Finding our voice

The last post was about trusting the process. I didn’t expect things to happen so quickly, but a morning’s work was enough to clear the mists. Working with actor and director, Ramūnas Šimukauskas, the group literally found its voice.

The opening scene happens in a market and strong performance ideas are starting to emerge from the group’s shared creative work. The dance and drama workshops have helped the group to move and know one another better. But it was hearing three great singers, all with very different kinds of voice, that suddenly made the words community opera more than an aspiration. And in the afternoon, we had a visit from Egidjus Sipavičius, the Lithuanian pop star, who grew up in Šančiai. His engagement brought new energy and his session on singing was greatly appreciated.

While that was happening, the visual art group went back to the field to begin looking for material: spaces, colours and textures. A lot of ideas emerged. Some will become stronger as they’re tested, while others will naturally fall away. We have two tasks for Thursday: to plan a way of working on them during the months after the school, and to develop something visual for Friday’s performance. That is not so obvious since the opera will happen at night in midwinter and many of our visual ideas depend on the use of light. Our contribution to this pilot performance will therefore be somewhat symbolic.

Wednesday was a good day though. I think we all felt a new shared and confidence in what we’re trying to do. It’s still a sketch, but it’s a sketch of something. The promise that we will perform on the Cabbage Feld in 48 hours’ time is starting to seem real.

Cabbage field selfie