28th June 2014
...and a lovely review from THE INDEPENDENT now on we go to The Lowry...
27th June 2014
The First REVIEW is in and it's 4.5* STARS...
25th June 2014
It's Opening Night at the beautiful Lawrence Batley Theatre - below Michaela Longden (who plays Nina) is in the dressing room with her first night flowers. We've had a great time getting to grips with the ideas, the sense and sensation of playing with the script, and for two days we've been rigging and plotting and dressing on the stage. But now we invite the audience into the play - its really important to make space for the audience, and you only get to know how they will take the space when you put the work in front of the audience for the first time. Of course, every audience is different and reacts to the material/body of the work in different ways...so we're all very exciting and a little bit nervous about how we're going to play together...
23rd June 2014
Fast forward...through a very intensive last week of rehearsals in which we ran the show in the studio a number of times, and we've arrived at the very beautiful Lawrence Batley Theatre for our get-in and technical days. Tim Tolkien's bike shed is assembled and the roof section is flown. The lighting (designed by Mike Lock - from Opera North) is rigged, focused and is now looking amazing - that's the lighting not Mike! Amid the hard work, there's genuine excitement as with set, lights, costumes, music, bikes, dance, words and action the world of the production steps off the page and comes into full view...
17th June 2014
Well, its the end of our second week of rehearsals. Last week was all about playful invention and energy, and finding ways, means and understandings. This week characters are quickly coming into focus and the atmosphere in the studio has changed as the actors really get to grips with the text in order to be 'off script' for the final week of rehearsal. There's a huge amount of 'graft' that goes into creating a theatre production, and what happens on the stage is only part of the story. Mike Lock our lighting designer came into rehearsals this week - there's a provisional LX plan on the table, but there's a lot more work to do on it. Mark went back into the recording studio to edit a couple of pieces and quickly composer a couple of new sequences of music. Meanwhile Rob our stage manager has been talking to venues about our technical requirements, as well as adjusting bikes and rounding up the last few props. Meanwhile, all our venues are busy with marketing activities - there's a press night at the LBT to be organised, notices and invites to go out. Thomas Aldersley dashed over to Media City on Tuesday to record an interview with Russell Walker for BBC Radio Leeds Late Show (its on our production page if you want to listen - great fun). Toward the end of the week we ran both Act One and Act Two... it was so exciting for all of us to see the whole work up on its feet.
8th June 2014
We're at the end of our first week of rehearsals with the cast - and what an amazing week its been. Such a great flow of energy and ideas as the shape of the play begins to emerge and as our wonderful director Liz Postlethwaite mine's the script and the actors begin to get under the skin of their characters. Our studio space in Oldham is full of props, furniture and costumes. Some excellent furniture wrangling by our stage manager Rob who has been sawing the legs off, lowering, bolting and generally dealing with castor, bike and prop modifications. Across the corridor in our second studio, performer Sean King has been working hard on the unique BMX physical theatre/dance vocabulary for the elusive character of Lost Boy. We also managed to celebrate actress Sarah Groarke's birthday with cake and candles, and fit in a research trip to watch TeamGB training at the Manchester velodrome.
31st May 2014
The end of a really exhausting week dashing around gathering up the last few bits and pieces before rehearsals being on Monday. I think its called getting all your ducks in line...bikes might be more appropriate...and goodness, there's a lot of them in this show! We're wondering how we're going to get them all in our tour van. Curious fact of the week - you can't scan bank notes - good to know, but a bit inconvenient. We still managed to create some prop money for the production.
24 May 2014
This week we have mainly been creating small actors (all will become clear when you see the show), collecting, making and ticking off items from our props list and getting very excited about seeing our supper massive posters going up around Huddersfield. Mike (LX designer) and Rob (Stage Manager) have been talking lighting desks: 'to tour or not to tour' general logistics of tight get-ins and different hardware...
18 May 2014
The end of a really full-on week in which our composer Mark mastered all the music for the show - we did a photo shoot with Mark and our race bike in the SPIRAL studio (see pics on gallery bar) - and our office filled up with yet more set furniture and items of costume...whew! Lots of logistics too with schedules to check and organise. Meanwhile somewhere on the outskirts of Birmingham sculptor Tim Tolkien has started creating something marvellous out of 1.5 tons of bike parts and steel...so exciting. Our hectic week culminating yesterday with a really fun and fantastic audition workshop for our supporting cast for the LBT performance dates.
9 May 2014
Furniture, props and costumes...we're having a hectic few weeks with all kinds of stuff arriving. We love this part of the production process - it's like Christmas. Tomorrow our racing bike arrives!
26 April 2014
Really feel like we're peddling now with our first audition workshop for supporting cast kicking off at Harrogate Theatre led by the brilliant Natalie Bellingham. What a great afternoon of imagination and mayhem.
Saturday - Sunday 12/13th July 2014
While most of us are quietly recovering following the last performance of the show, our energetic Lost Boy (Sean King) is off doing the 116 mile overnight bike ride from London to Dunwich. We obviously didn't work him hard enough in the show!
Monday 30th June 2014
The last time Sean King, who plays Lost Boy, had the day off he tackled Holme Moss - today, he's up Cragg Vale and just happened to bump into Roanna Rowsall MBE (Olympic Gold Medalist) doing the same...
Sunday 8th June 2014
Day off - and our energetic performer Sean King who plays Lost Boy in the production just had to jump on his FIXIE and tackle 'The Moss' (Holme Moss) which is the big climb on the second stage of the Tour de France as it comes through Yorkshire. This is why we just had to bring Sean back to his home town of Huddersfield to appear in Lost Boy Racer - he just goes for it with grit and determination...
Friday 7th June 2014
Company research trip to the Manchester Velodrome to see TeamGB training session. Here's actress Michaela Longden who plays Nina in LBR with Wiggo in the background...