Handprint Theatre

A peek into the world of the sometimes crazy, but mostly lovely Handprint Theatre

Month: June, 2013

Happy Monday

by Sarah

When was the last time you did something for the first time?

When was the last time you had a solitary adventure?

When was the last time you took genuine pleasure in the simple things?

On those Mondays, or any day of the week that isn’t so hot, why not try one of the things mentioned above?

Something that could combine all of the above is going on a long, solitary walk in the city, countryside, or even along the coast…and document it somehow. Have a camera on your phone? Good. Now just take yourself out there.

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Yes; we love you all. Wishing you a very Happy Monday, hoping you have a great week; and here’s to solitary adventures…and the inspiration they bring us. Big hugs from the Handprint team x

Happy Monday

by handprinttheatreblog

It’s creeping towards 11pm; there was a gorgeous North London sunset tonight, yet Happy Monday has not yet gone live… It’s been one of “those days”, yet, us Handprinters are determined to find the silver linings…even on “those days”. Perhaps, on days like these, it is all the more important that we seek out the little things that make us smile? Well, we certainly think so. Without further ado, we give you Mika. (Special mention must be given, as Sarah tweeted earlier today…and got a tweet back from a blogger in America…pointing her towards this song. Don’t you love random acts of kindness on the internet?)

Doom da da di da di Doom da da di da di

Everybody’s gonna love today,
Gonna love today, gonna love today.
Everybody’s gonna love today, gonna love today.
Anyway you want to, anyway you’ve got to,
Love love me, love love me, love love.

I’ve been crying for so long,
Fighting tears just to carry on,
But now, but now, it’s gone away.

Hey girl why can’t you carry on,
Is it ’cause you’re just like your mother,
A little tight, like to tease for fun,
Well you ain’t gonna tease no other,
Gonna make you a lover.

Everybody’s gonna love today,
love today, love today.
Everybody’s gonna love today,
Anyway you want to, anyway you’ve got to,
Love love me, love love me, love love.
Girl in the blue with the big bust on,
Big bust on, big bust on.
Wait till your mother and your papa’s gone,
Papa’s gone
Momma, momma papa, shock shock me,
Shock shock me, shock shock.

Everybody’s gonna love today,
Gonna love today, gonna love today
I said,
Everybody’s gonna love today, gonna love today,
Anyway you want to, anyway you’ve got to,
Love love me, love love me, love love.

Carolina sits on ninety five
Give her a dollar and she’ll make you smile.

Hook her, book her, nook her, walk away!

Girl dresses like a kid for fun,
Licks her lips like they’re something other,
Tries to tell you life has just begun,
But you know she’s getting something other
Than the love from her mother

Everybody’s gonna love today,
Love today, love today
Everybody’s gonna love today,
Anyway you want to, anyway you’ve got to,
Love love me, love love me, love love.

Girl in the blue with the big bust on,
Big bust on, big bust on.
Wait till your mother and your papa’s gone,
Papa’s gone
Momma, momma papa, shock shock me,
Shock shock me, shock shock.

I said,
Everybody’s gonna love today,
Gonna love today, gonna love today
I said,
Everybody’s gonna love today,
Gonna love today,
Anyway you want to, anyway you’ve got to,
Love love me, love love me, love love.

Doom da da di da di Doom da da di da di Doom da da di da di Doom da da di da di…..

Everybody’s gonna love today,
Gonna love today, gonna love today
Everybody’s gonna love today,
Gonna love today,
Anyway you want to, anyway you’ve got to,
Love love me, love love me, love love.

Doom da da di da di Doom da da di da di Doom da da di da di Doom da da di da di…..

~ Love Today, Mika 

 

A very Happy Monday to you all, and here’s to finding the silver linings on our off days! Big hugs from the Handprint team x

Happy Monday from Sri Lanka!

by handprinttheatreblog

Our lovely Jenny, for the last 5 months, has been living and working in Sri Lanka (we’ve missed her!). For this week’s Happy Monday, we want to pass it over to her. She’s been having a wonderful time, and can’t wait to tell you all about her experiences… A very Happy Monday to you all, hope you’re finding the sunshine on this dreary day!

Ayubowan! (That’s how we say hello in Sri Lanka!)

In this post, I will write about my experiences in Sri Lanka over the past five months. My main incentive to visit this wonderful country was to gain experience in the very rewarding prospect of volunteering as an English teacher in a school for the deaf.

Since I visited a deaf school in Kenya at the age of 21, I have made it my ambition to volunteer at a deaf school in a third world country. Since Kenya, the opportunity has never presented itself, until a good friend of mine mentioned that there was a place at a volunteering experience in Sri Lanka! I thought to myself “Why not?” and jumped at the chance.

Upon arrival in Sri Lanka, we were given a chance to relax in our first homestay in Maharagama, which was owned and run by a lovely lady named Savitiri, who was most helpful, and made us feel very welcome in a totally different culture and environment to our own. Indeed, we were taken out of our comfort zones a little bit; I started to realize just how much us British take for granted. For example, there was no computer or video game in sight (a bit of a relief, to be honest!), and the majority of the food they eat in Sri Lanka is rice with various different curries.

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Speaking of food, this is where I had my first culture shock. Sri Lankans eat curry (rice, sauce, the lot) with their HANDS! I was a bit horrified because I had had no previous warning! Yet, after a few failed (and very messy) attempts, I managed to get the hang of it. In fact, now, after four months, I think I will have difficulty using a knife and fork!

After a week of drinking in the Sri Lankan culture, getting over ‘Delhi belly’ (which I will not describe), white water rafting, jumping 20 feet into natural pools, and most importantly, going through training, myself and a French lad named Samuel were taken to our homestay near the school we were going to be teaching at in Bandarawela, which is a picturesque mountainous area in the Central Province of Sri Lanka. The journey to Bandarawela was to take roughly six hours, which we were forewarned about; however, we were not told just how mountainous the area was! Cue lots of being thrown about on the coach!

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After the basic conditions of our first homestay, the second one (our home for the next eight weeks) turned out to be a bit more luxurious; Samuel and I had a whole flat to ourselves. We would be given meals every day, apart from lunch, which we would eat at our school.

We were then taken to our school for a welcoming visit. At this point, I was not sure how to feel; scared? Excited? Happy? To be honest, I think I opted for all three! I just did not know what to expect. As we approached the school gates, we were greeted by a sea of white; the children were standing just inside the gates, in two very long orderly lines with huge grins on their faces.

Walking up the drive, in between the long lines of children, who were waving at us and smiling, I felt tears start to my eyes. I was expecting a welcome, but not of this magnitude! And still, there was more to come.

We were taken into the school hall, where speeches were made by the principal, who then beckoned us forward to light a candle set on a plinth, which was a brilliant honour. We were then treated to some dancing and singing acts performed by the children. I could not believe that the school had made such a supreme effort, just to welcome two newcomers!

The very next day, upon arrival at the school, I expected to just be observing lessons, but no. I was thrown straight into teaching! On a positive note, this was a good thing, as it meant there was less chance for me to be nervous! However, as I looked down at the expectant year-11 faces, I have to admit, I did feel like running away! I decided to start by teaching them the names of things in the classroom, such as a pen, paper, book, rubber, pencil case and so on.

Over the next week, I tried to look at the knowledge and learning abilities of the children, so I could determine exactly how and what I would teach them. I was given the freedom to choose what and how I would teach them, which was good, as it gave me the chance to look at each class’s individual abilities and think about how I was going to go about teaching them.

I was in for a little bit of a shock. The school is by no means a bad school (in fact it is a very good one, seeing the abilities in all the children, rather than the disabilities) and even has a Sri Lankan English teacher. But I did notice that the children, when learning English, the children were told to copy English examples from the board, as opposed to actually being told what they were writing. The English they were told to write was sometimes very advanced, and a lot of the children had no idea what they had written.

I decided that I would start from the very beginning and use very basic English. I started by teaching the children the BSL alphabet – which they knew to an extent – and then progressed to teaching them English words bit by bit, such as colours, weather, moods etc. I worked hard at using visual resources such as pictures and mime to help them to link the object to the word, so they could learn to recognise English words.

At the end of school, almost each day, the boarding children went to the playing field near their boarding home to play cricket and do keep fit exercises. This was a nice change from the world of computers and mobile phones! Even when a teacher was not present, the children went outside to run, play cricket, volleyball and many other sports!

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Aside from working at the school, I have found the time to explore Sri Lanka, and see what the country has to offer. I will not waffle on about every single thing I have done, but I will list the most impressive parts: –

Climbed Adam’s Peak – a 2250 metre high mountain that has steps, yes, steps, going all the way up to the top! Even more impressively, we started climbing at 2:30 in the morning to see the sunrise from the top, which was glorious!

Experienced a lot of Buddhism – The main religion in Sri Lanka is Buddhism. The other day, I saw the actual Buddha’s preserved body! It was made up to look so real, it was creepy! I even had a cup of tea with a Buddhist monk in his house!

Learnt to drive a Tuk-Tuk – Sri Lankan taxis basically! In Sri Lanka, you see these three-wheeled cars all over the place. It was so much fun to be able to drive one!

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That’s all about me for now. I would also like to mention that the playing field at the school I worked at is in dire need of a revamp. The playing field is on a steep mountainside and lacks a fence, so whenever the children play their sports, their volleyballs, cricket balls etc get thrown over the side and lost. The school struggle to afford to pay for all this extra equipment. There is also the fear of the children falling off the side (yes it is that steep!) and getting seriously injured.

Therefore, I have decided that I would like to help them pay for a fence around their playing field. It seems like such a small thing, but even the smallest things can make a huge difference! This is where I would like to ask for YOUR help. I will be setting up a fundraising page in the near future so people can make donations, however big or small, to help this wonderful school that I feel very privileged to have taught at.

That is all for now. I really hope you enjoyed reading (or skimming through) this post.

Much love, hugs, and kisses,

Jenny xx 

Happy Monday – ‘Something’s Gotta Give’ style…

by handprinttheatreblog

This week’s Happy Monday is focused on our (revamped!) production of Something’s Gotta Give – hopefully it’ll make you smile, and round off your Monday with a bit more of the wonderful sunshine we’ve had today. Hey, June, we think we like you. A lot! Happy Monday, y’all!

Who is your favourite celebrity?
Someone who you can look up to and idolise, or that guilty pleasure as you watch someone fall from grace in the public eye -what could they possibly do next?

We have been passionately exploring our relationship with celebrities:  just why did we idolise, and now seem to love to hate certain ‘celebs’. It is fascinating that 51% of 18-25 year olds said that it was their lives ambition to become famous – are you part of this statistic? With the ever increasing number of TV talent shows manipulating the way we perceive the arts, Something’s Gotta Give is no X factor.

Without following a predictable argument against celebrity culture, we hope to explore, expose and excite ourselves with the bizarre world we live in. What do you think? We encourage anyone with a response to celebrity culture to come along and contribute ideas towards the development of the performance. (Something’s Gotta Give is going to be performed at the Ignite Festival in Exeter this week – come along if you’re in the area!)

New to Handprint? 

Our company is made up of Deaf and hearing performers, directors, writers, photographers, and any roles going, working together as equals! The impact this has on our work is that we devise visually; taking images before words to develop the performance means we work with an aim for total communication (a combination of BSL and spoken English, fused together, wherever possible – bridging the gap between the deaf and hearing worlds).
Something’s Gotta Give includes film, British Sign Language and a bit of Britney Spears – an unusual combination for us but it has been an interesting process! But how to devise a performance breaking down the journey of a celebrity without simply re-enacting ‘that’ Britney video has been a challenge.  Additionally, none of us could ever strive to become the sophisticated images of Marilyn Monroe or Audrey Hepburn! As within all devising processes, there has been laughter, tears and a lot of toilet roll (?! – it’ll be clear once you’re in the audience…). And we are excited to share with you the completely revised piece.

We hope you find this performance artistically accessible. Whether Deaf or hearing we would like to welcome you and hope it is an engaging  eye opener to our own responses to celebrity.  (Even if that favourite celebrity is Lindsay Lohan – we won’t judge. Much!)

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