The Backpack Ensemble

As mentioned in the previous blogs, the heart of our ethos is, to be honest:

The Backpack Ensemble don’t intend to shy away from the fact that we are performers onstage, instead we embrace it. And embrace the sense of honesty and openness that this provides. We draw from personal experience to give our performance a real, emotional backbone.

Through use of narration the characters that the performers take on are described and formed. Allowing for moments of light hearted silliness, with the ability for genuine emotion.

The setting and environment of the piece is created on stage, everything taken from the performer’s backpacks which they bring onstage. The DIY nature of the creation, embraced.

In regards to us as an ensemble being honest, at first it was difficult in terms of how to approach performance. How would we play a character on stage if we are honest, because with that statement if we are in a performance space and attempt to play a character the audience know we are just ourselves. Through experimentation, we approached the story in a way that we would have a few set characters and then narrators. Charlie would be played by Samantha, but Samantha would enter on stage as herself and in front of the audience she would turn into Charlie, she would explain the change into a character in great detail and we would add Charlie’s clothing to her to complete the image.

 

It was a performance style that I had rarely encountered. This made it all the more enjoyable, being onstage and playing yourself is such a rewarding experience. I found myself smiling and laughing at scenes that I genuinely enjoyed, this was because we had broken that barrier between us and the audience. Of course certain parts of the dialogue were heightened but I felt my performance was natural, and thus as the show progress, my performance felt incredibly enjoyable.

 

I can’t wait to see what the future is for The Backpack Ensemble!

 



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