Our Brighton Bites series offers short, witty and slightly tongue-in-cheek insights into the offerings at England’s largest arts festival. Venezuelan performer Saras Feijóo tells us about her showMemories of a Lullaby, which she’s performing at The Warren, Brighton.
How would you describe your show in one sentence?
The need to remember and the wish to forget.
Is this your first visit to Brighton Fringe, if so what interesting tales have you been told about whatto expect?
It is, indeed, my first visit to Brighton Fringe. I have heard that this Festival is it much more artist friendly than any other as well as the team involved in the organisation of it. So far, everyone has treated me well making me feel welcome!
How has the show developed on the way to Brighton?
We had to crowdfund in order to fund our production and travel costs, so I am even more grateful for the opportunity to perform at Brighton this year. I want to put on the best show I can, so as not to disappoint everyone that believed in me.
How have you been preparing for Brighton Fringe?
Writing the best possible press releases, creating the most beautiful flyers and posters possible, getting in touch with as many journalists, producers and venue managers as well as the general audience that I can. Keeping open to new opportunities of promoting the work and, of course, rehearsing many, many times to bring the best of myself and my art to the lovely Brighton Fringe audiences!
What do you think sets your show apart from all the other festival offerings?
Memories of a Lullaby is a one woman show about my experience growing up in Venezuela. It draws from multiple true stories to reveal the tension, the constant changes between the horror and the beauty, the despair and the hope that I experienced there. It is a hard-hitting exposition of existence skilfully combining storytelling, physical political theatre and visual art elements. It gives a fullon, yet tender performance by an artist with firsthand experience of the events she portrays.
The show starts in a very personal and intimate way: my voice begins a story and then with my hands I create a painting in front of the audience. Through body movements and more painting, the show then becomes an invitation to every member of the audience to bring their own experience in and connect more deeply with what is in front of their eyes.
At the end of this 50-minute show, not only will we have travelled through more than 25 years, but also, a painting will have been made as a result. Moreover, a Venezuelan philosopher has been helping us to portray the current situation in Venezuela, in order to explain the sociopolitical context to our audiences. During the show, I talk about my family, my friends, the sun warming my skin, the time I was kidnapped by corrupt police, the dead body I saw through my bathroom window when I was around eight years old. I recreate the beauty of the Caribbean sea, the highest mountains, the lively and danceable Latin rhythms, the deaths that occur from simply using a mobile phone in the street.
I talk about my lullabies, the songs made out of gunshots through the night. As I grew up, this soundscape became faster and scarier. Memories of a Lullaby prints on the stage, in a transparent and honest way, the palpable fear of death waiting around the corner, ending on a note of transcendent hope achieved through creativity.
What’s the show that you don’t want to miss at this year’s Brighton Fringe (apart from your own!)?
To be honest, I wish I had more time on my hands to see what’s on during my time in Brighton but I have been so busy organising all the necessary to bring both my productions to the festival, that I am not sure what will I don’t want to miss.
I am arriving few days before my shows are on, though, This will give me time to go around, meet other artists, see some nice shows and so on.
If your show was a flavour of Brighton Rock, what would it be?
It wouldn’t be any. Memories of a Lullabyhas it own unique flavour. The flavour of a soul that lived in hell, passed through the darkness, managed to bring her own light to it and continue to walk, creating her own path in every step, in every moment… This woman has managed to make gunshots become red roses that all eyes in the audience could take away with them as they leave the theatre space at the end of the show – if they wish to…
Memories of a Lullabyis being performed 20 – 22 May2016
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