Wonderful intersections

by Clark Crystal | 1 September 2015

the relationship between theatre and opera is clearly connected by the use of recitative

What a great topic to think and then proceed to write about. As an applied theatre practitioner for over 30 years who creates theatre an opportunity to reflect on my practice is always welcomed.

For me there is a distinct and clear relationship between theatre and other art forms. I would like to refer to one of the current projects I’m collaborating on as a distinct illustration of this relationship between theatre and art. This relationship is not with the visual arts intersection, however, it is another form of art: opera.

Since 2009 I have been the artistic collaborator of Blue Roo Theatre Company Inc. An inclusive ensemble with 28 artists based in Brisbane. Blue Roo create contemporary performances led by the artistry, experiences and imaginations of an ensemble of artists with diverse ability and impairment. Through unique artistic collaborations they redefine theatrical genres. The personal and private investment of the artists ensures that the work connects to everyone and poetically engages in public, social and political discussions.

We create one production each year, performing at the Judith Wright Centre of Performing Arts. The company meet every Thursday and it takes nine months from the floor to the stage. In 2013 I asked the ensemble what is going to be the project in 2014. Their response in one loud voice was: “Singing”. “Right then …” I said to myself, “ …I’ll go to the top”. The following day I rang Opera Queensland. Serendipity was on our side. Throughout the world, opera companies were closing.

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