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The first Hidden Spire performance took place December 2012.

I was appointed as creative director in September and was given the theme of ‘hidden.’ I then acted as a magpie and introduced it to all the creative classes here at Crisis Skylight, giving Crisis members provocations, such as quotations or questions around the theme, taking in images or objects that could evoke the concept of hiding, and then taking away the jewels of their creations: pictures, pieces of writing, ideas and stories that the classes produced whilst I was with them.

Alongside this process I worked with a small group of professional actors and artists sharing the themes and contributions coming out of Crisis Skylight classes, which were continually being sent, to which we added and developed further.

In early November an open event was held in the theatre, for all those interested in being involved in the project, to join together to start sharing ideas, experimenting with possibilities and exploring potential collaborations between art disciplines and people. We spent the day playing music, reciting poetry, trying out shadow puppetry, and generally acting like overexcited children as we all played together, throwing ideas around the space. It was the most fun we’d all had in ages!

The three professional performers then created a 15min work-in-progress to show at the Old Fire Station’s regular Theatre Scratch Night. Crisis members were invited to watch and feedback, and since then it’s been non-stop; four weeks of devising and rehearsing, art classes working on the design of set and costumes, music classes composing, and all the back stage work and technical requirements of putting on a show.

It has been a joy and a privilege to see the coming together of so many diverse people, and have a chance to share and tell stories and turn them in to a piece of theatre.

– Lizzy McBain, Creative Director.