‘Shelter Me’, by Circumference

Theatre Delicatessen; 2nd July 2015

Deservedly glowing reviews of #ShelterMe have appeared all over, so this is something a little different… An experience…

(Will probably look awful on mobile. Apologies)

'Must make sure my phone is charged for #ShelterMe this evening. I gather I'll need it?'

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Behind the imposing office formality, Circumference present a world of surprises in the most exciting thing to happen to circus theatre in the last decade.

I am about to go on a personal journey in the shared company of many fleeting new friends. My relationship with my phone will be a big part of this journey…

'So far, so intriguing. I've sent a text to a strange number, and been told a buddy will find me later...'
‘So far, so intriguing. I’ve sent a text to a strange number, and been told a buddy will find me later…’

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We’re being invited to have fun here, to be playful. So that’s how my review will be.

'After being invited to keep our phones on 'loud and proud', might as well use it'
‘After being invited to keep our phones on ‘loud and proud’, makes sense to use it’

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Our hosts are gentle with us, warm. Inviting us to join in, but as much or as little as we feel comfortable with.  There is touch. a shaken hand, a patted shoulder, assistance. There are games.  There’s an exploration.  There are gentle introductions, meetings. They develop as trust grows.6

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Where do we feel safe? Where do we feel Comfort? Where are our boundaries with other people, strangers?

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The text won’t go through. Is this a one-way relationship?17

We’re fed a text history of Nich Galzin and Aislinn Mulligan‘s relationship as they live out its consequence above the concrete.

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Then the wonderland becomes stranger, less cohesive, more intriguing…

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A glittering cave of technological debris that, devoid of any direct human agency, seems to have developed its own form of ‘life’.19

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I remember… I’m supposed to be searching for someone…

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Ellie Rose Rusbridge in a softly sung haven.

Mulligan on umbilical silks. Beatific smile. Legs seemingly following their own impulses, gaze exploratory.25

Isolation.26

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A place to ask questions to the void, with answers spewing incongruously, amusingly, from speakers. An infinite number of monkeys…

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Needy.

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I liked it in the small crowded dark room they gently ushered us into. We got talking. Didn’t want to leave.

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Overheard: ‘This makes you open yourself up to anything’ ‘Like drinking coffee’

'I love you' 'I miss you'. This is what it's like.'
‘I love you’ ‘I miss you’. This is what it’s like.’

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Surrounded by a circle of onlookers, Helena Reynolds spins her hula hoops, then stops. Disjointed moment.

'All the phones are out. The 'buddies' are talking, but the human beings aren't'
‘All the phones are out. The ‘buddies’ are talking, but we, the human beings, aren’t’

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She’s real! I should have trusted them all along!35

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It feels right to hold hands.

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All this city. All these people. IMG_6147

Belonging. Don’t try too hard to understand everything. Dusk over the city is beautiful. We’re beautiful. Together.

The bonding at the beginning was nice. But I appreciate it so much more having come through the rest of the adventure.
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They’ve been so tender with us. Smiles on the aerialist’s faces, tears in my eyes. Simplicity is so hard to remember.IMG_6148
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Sharing. Loving. Doubly counterweighted.
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And danger! (Some people say circus has to have danger) Pablo Meneu swings out over all of London on his straps. What joy in this freedom.  This freedom to be connected. Not digitally. Through our presence, our hands and our eyes, and our hearts.
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Thank you everybody <3
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I tune my headphones to Channel A – as, it seems do most others.  The music brings us back up, but brighter and with more intent than before.
‘You got to show me love’
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As I step into the lift that will take us back to where we started (but so far from where we started) the lyric cuts of finally:
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‘So you want
To be free
To live your life
The way you want to be’
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In the bar, I talk to new friends Dan and Anne-Marie about how different our personal revelations were.  I give my complimentary gin to someone who lacks a drink, and run to catch my train, buoyant.
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pledge button.

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