Jess – Week 5 – Passing the Baton

A wonderful first week in France – after our performances at the beautiful Bosmeleac lakeside we return to Le Fosso, a magical retreat centre run by our hosts Mike and Hilary.

Rachel has given me some days off from this week’s teaching and rehearsal schedule to work on my upcoming PhD performance which I have to rush back to Herefordshire after our shows at Caurel this weekend, to perform next week (long ago booked for the Herefordshire Walking Festival), before coming back for our final week in France. Phew!

These few days have presented much-needed time to collect my very dispersed butterfly-thoughts after a non-stop rollercoaster year, straight from my last PhD performance into devising and rehearsals for Damselflies. I am very grateful for being granted this breathing space, whilst also still safely contained in the midst of Rachel’s own creative process.

Because I will be missing some shows while I’m back in Herefordshire, the dancers and Rachel have swiftly re-worked the piece without me. I’m sad not to be in it, and don’t want to let the company down, but I can’t be everywhere at once and I’m so grateful that I have still had the opportunity to be part of this wonderful project.

I have still been joining in with the morning training and warm-ups which begins with a run to the village shop for bread. A very serious business:

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Meanwhile,  while I sit indoors embroidering activist messages of positivity into many metres of bunting ready for my installation at the end of my walk, I hear from outside the delightful sounds of people – children and adults from the local community – enjoying the daily workshops on the ropes. I realise that the sounds of human happiness are universal. Well done Rachel, Milton, Lisa & Eleni for facilitating so much happiness this week! (And Dave for kitchen and bread-making genius!)

PS Today was some corde lisse training… YAY!

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