I have been providing mentoring and critical friend services to several performance makers and organisations during 2016/17. A Critical Friend can be described as 'A trusted person who asks provocative questions and offers critiques of a person’s work as a friend. A critical friend takes the time to fully understand the context of the work presented and the outcomes that the person or group is working toward. The friend is an advocate for the success of that work' Heller, Harold (1988)
I work responsively with each organisation, depending on what people are looking to achieve. No two sessions are the same and there often dancing around to loud music involved.
I have been working with Wyldwood Arts, mainly reflecting on their process of producing intergenerational work with schools, libraries and arts organisations. After our first session we widened this lens to include the more aspirational and developmental aspects of the work.
In 2016 I began to mentor Isadora Vibes as part of Beacons Icons and Dykons. This was a more traditional directorial and mentoring relationship relating to Isadora's devising process for She Must Be Seeing Things.
This year I am also working with producer and artist Jo Bligh; founder member of Thorny; A platform for the outsider voices of Bristol and beyond. We are investigating personal and organisational goals for growth, expansion and creativity.
If you are interested in mentoring or curious about the Critcal Friend role and think it might work for you, drop me a line!
Photo credits Vonalina Cake and Camilla Adams.