Using Shadow Theatre, Projection, and Puppetry, Behind the Screen is an exploration of how our relationship with Social Media can have an unexpected impact on our relationships with family and friends, and how we view ourselves. Follow the story of a teenage girl finding self-confidence behind the screen of her phone. However, as her perceptions of reality become blurred by Likes and Emojis, she succumbs to the power of the Social Media Puppeteer.
Behind the Screen is a new show in development, Directed, Performed, and Created by Jessica Innes; Actor, Physical Theatre Performer. Supported by Summerhall through a Residency Development Week; “Virtual physical theatre artist Jessica Innes, will spend a week with Summerhall to develop Behind the Screen, a show exploring the effects of social media on teenagers.” https://www.thestage.co.uk/news/2017/summerhall..., and Puppet Animation Scotland through mentorship and a performance slot as part of Snapshots at the Manipulate Festival.
Jessica spoke to The List's Theatre Editor, Gareth Vile about the creation of Behind the Screen and the development extract shown at Manipulate; Social Butterfly http://vilearts.blogspot.co.uk/2018/01/dramatur...
The show will be accessible to everyone; it is entirely visual and uses a soundtrack with effects and no dialogue ensuring engagement for all languages. Behind the Screen is being created to help raise awareness of staying mentally safe online.
The production uses a combination of Shadow Theatre (Bodies in Shadow) and Shadow Puppetry, with projections created by Overhead Projectors, and Motion Graphics. Using both traditional and contemporary styles of Shadow Theatre, this promises to be a visually stunning piece of theatre.There is no dialogue in the show. Lewis Maxwell Bigham (Glassmasterer - BBC Scotland's Vic Galloway's Top 25 Artists to look out for this year) is the musician and designer of the soundtrack for the piece.
To create this show, Jessica not only has skills she attained from graduating with a Diploma in Physical Theatre but also attended workshops with Curious School of Puppetry, Fabrizio Montecchi (Teatro Gioco Vita), Norbert Götz, Tortoise in a Nutshell, Smoking Apples Theatre Company, Théâtre du Soleil, and received private training from Vision Mechanics. She has also received support and guidance from Surge Physical Theatre Company, Ross Mackay (Tortoise in a Nutshell) and Robbie Gordon (Wonderfools Theatre Company).
WHAT ARE PEOPLE SAYING?
Manipulate Festival 2018.
Some of the audience written responses;
"It was very intense with it feeling fast paced it felt like a symbol of anxiety"
"I found it amazing, probably because it’s so relatable – pushing a common experience to an extreme, ridiculous limit."
"It was very effective in capturing the anxiety and inertia mobile phones and phones can enkindle"
"The showing of the disconnect, the corrosion of social relationships comes across well. Love the simplicity and effectiveness of the shadow puppetry. Accessible for all."
"Engaging and built anxiety, felt like it was making it approachable"
"Depressing and scared. I have an 11 year old"
"Sad that it has to be aimed at 12-16 year olds but it should be in today's society. Very thought provoking and well done."
"I never considered the impact that social media has on school, and this piece really did a good job showing that"
"Topical, especially in the era of Black Mirror-esque social critique, this piece looks at the themes of social disconnection, cyber-bullying, self esteem and body dysmorphia, and the dangerously ill effects of social media and the internet upon mental health, especially in today’s youth. Soundtrack by Glassmasterer (aka Lewis Maxwell Bigham) with complex, busy guitar melody, adds to the intensity of this piece. A moving and important production that will only increase in importance as we continue to educate ourselves and the next generations on how to stay mentally safe online."
- Edinburgh Guide.