We really want to talk to Foster Carers. Please email us: firstname.lastname@example.org or call Alex: 07954406176.
Sam Butler and Alex Butler are sisters, and artists, living in Reading and Brighton. Sam is co-Artistic Director of award-winning Fevered Sleep and Alex is a video and fine artist returning to her practice after time out to raise her three children. This is their first collaboration together and Church’s first production. They both have extensive experience of working with children and families and non-professional performers in their practice.
This project was imagined following a conversation about our extraordinary childhood as a family of foster carers.
“Like losing a limb when they leave. Physical pain not just emotional. Nightmares, dreams. Lost. Names, birthdays. Dates that apply to other people’s children. Endless socks that are forever hanging round the washing basket, years after.”
Foster families still hold the ghosts of absent and lost children. For Sam and Alex’s family, the strongest conductive jolt into their domestic history is music; the songs played for each foster child on record players, guitars, sung, danced and jumped to round the table. This piece is a monument to the commitment of foster families and to Sam and Alex’s own mother’s loss, re-imagined by sisters who are now mothers too.
Church will work with foster parents and their birth and foster children local to both supporting venue – West End Centre, Aldershot, and Quarterhouse, Folkestone – to find out their experiences of letting go of their temporary families as they move onto their new lives, either back with their birth families or in new adoptive families. Church intend to capture foster mothers singing the songs they sang for, and with, their lost looked after children and to use this sound as the central element of the piece.
This is Church’s first production, the subject matter is personal and they want experienced, insightful, committed partners.
West End Centre knows there are over 100 looked-after children in Rushmoor, they want this project to reach out and give a voice to this community in their venue.
Quarterhouse supports co-created work with communities, this piece would feature in their Festival of Family in 2016. They also know, and want to continue to support, artist Sam Butler.
Both venues will work together to share knowledge on reaching contemporary theatre audiences and marginalised communities.
Marina Norris, works with artists and companies to help them achieve artistic ambitions whilst becoming financially resilient, is Producer for the R&D.
August: Visit venues, establish Local Authorities contacts
September: R&D at West End Centre to include all staff sharing. Sound/video editing
October: R&D at West End Centre including visit from Quarterhouse. Sharing of work for staff, foster families, Local Authority staff.