work.txt (Modern Plays)

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work.txt (Modern Plays)

work.txt (Modern Plays)

RRP: £99
Price: £9.9
£9.9 FREE Shipping

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The content is just a bit too pleased with itself, and forgets to make the point it came here for, but there is something in it. Perhaps if it spent less time trying to convince the naysayers. Temping is a jewel-like show, elegantly paced with a constant flow of ‘work’, and, of course, slowly dawning revelations about office life, unexpected relationships, petty squabbles. But behind the mundane trivia of work lurk real lives and hopes – too easily snuffed out by your own complicity, and even by murkier activities that are only hinted at. There’s a limit to how far Dutch Kills can go before shattering the illusion they’ve so carefully created, so in many ways Temping is full of ideas that could be far more fully developed in an alternative format. Nonetheless, it’s a quietly moving, slightly unsettling, miniature masterpiece of a show. It is easy to pass through things these days without asking ‘but who made this world?’ and it is becoming easier. The clatter of the restaurant kitchen recedes behind the delivery driver on the doorstep; the hands that made the clothes we wear move through the air in a country we may never see. So disconnected becomes time spent from thing made that the ‘hour selling’ in which most of us participate feels increasingly abstract. We no longer make most of our personal world nor have relationships with those who do. So obscured is the thing made that it becomes harder and harder to tell when we are working, and what it is we are working at. Writer Nathan Ellis seems well aware of the potential criticisms of the show. That’s sort of the problem really: The script is so self-aware that self-awareness is basically the protagonist, and the actual point is lost amongst knowing, wry quips. The script has predicted a variety of niggling reactions, at one point assigning a ‘cynical audience member’ a rant about how this isn’t real theatre, that they’d seen Mamma Mia The Musical just last week and “ that was proper theatre”. But self-awareness does not “proper theatre” make.

The new show from Yann Coste and Sébastien Rambaud is a genuinely inventive hour of musical clowning – and a whole lot of drumming. Read our full review here. Photo: Nicolas Galloux I Am From Reykjavik @ Portobello Promenade (★★★★★) In a similar vein, don’t expect any conventional performers in Nathan Ellis’s very clever Work.txt( pictured above, picture by Guy Sanders) at Summerhall, but do expect to be doing quite a bit of a show’s work yourself. That might involve a bit of group reading, some solo microphone work, a few gentle construction activities, even a bit of lying on the floor. Chloe and Natasha's And Then The Rodeo Burned Down is a delightfully queer, sexy and foolish mix of clowning, physical theatre and dance. Read our full review here. Photo: Chloe and Natasha work.txt @ Summerhall (★★★★★) A surprisingly unimaginative audience participation take on work culture, which asks its audience to take a DIY approach to a night at the theatre. work.txt | Soho Theatre | Until 12 Mar 2022 There are so many budding writers but it’s an incredibly competitive field and one that’s notoriously hard to break into. What advice would you give to someone hoping to write a script and get it out there?

work.txt

I struggled for a long while over whether work.txt was a successful reconception of work. There is a deceptiveness to the whole set up that that made it hard for me endorse its vision. I felt like it was out to get me. But in the weeks since, trying to piece together my own conception of what work I wanted to do, what I felt to be ‘good’ work, I found that the act of reconception is itself a spur to further reconception, and my own dissatisfactions with what work.txt did and how it worked were necessary and intentional. A question I often find myself asking is ‘why am I working so much?’ I think this is a pretty familiar question to 20-something year olds, fumbling for career ladders that have been melted down into crumpled heaps, anxiously aware of each other’s side hustles and striving to become a poorly defined ‘enough’.

Alongside its fast cars, dizzying theatrical devices and pounding beats, Common Wealth's Peaceophobia counters prejudice with stories of humour, passion, and belief. Read our full review here. Photo: Ian Hodgson Dykegeist @ Summerhall (★★★★) Following the course of a regular workday in a major city, in a major company, someone suddenly and without an apparent reason lies down in the office. The internet is outraged, the story goes viral, the art world is interested, and the parents of said person are on a cruise trying to enjoy their holiday. That is more or less the story of work.txt. However, the magic of this play really lies in the fact that you – the audience – are acting it all out. Are there any writers who influence or inspire you at all? Have any particular plays stood out for you in recent years?Besides which: it was a great piece of theatre. It was gripping, satisfying, discomforting, with an elusive glimmer of hope I couldn’t quite catch, but knew I would go on seeking. Work demands focus. It demands being at the right place, at the right time, wearing the right clothes, being in the right mindset. It feels like it’s really hard to do good work at a time of persistent strangeness and wrongness and uncertainty, when the structures that bring us together have been worn away. And the same is true of watching a performance. Not simply a tale of despair, but a space where the depth of lived experiences surrounding abortion can be felt in their entirety through storytelling combined with years’ worth of recorded Zoom interviews. Read our full review here. Photo: Chalk Line Theatre But this is the wrong question. Or at least, it’s a question that is easily answered: ‘because I do not know which work I should be doing.’ This leads to a better question: ‘what is the nature of the work that I am doing?’. Asking this helps us begin to answer the current beneath all these work-questions, ‘what is the work that I want to do?’.



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