Last year I blogged my highlights of 2010 and it seemed to put me on the right track for what was to become an epic 2011. I had wanted to leave 2011 more established as a performer whilst getting my teeth into bigger projects as well as honing my craft and exploring the world of light entertainment. It was also the year I wanted to experiment with becoming a director, this is what happened..
I kicked started the year as a Duckie Artist In Residence and presented new work to their Saturday night crowd, from this Milkshake and Silent Film were born but most importantly the Lisa Stansfield Experience - my first short with Judy Jacob in which I went to Lisa's home, studio and local pub in Rochdale as I tried to find my baby
In February EYHO were awarded our first Grant for the Arts award. 'Enforced' ran until June at Stratford Circus that saw blind date style collaborations set up with regional solo artists to create new work, the experiments were a success and EYHO are currently planning a second series.
Feb was also fab as it saw my first cover - Hello Time Out London..
In March I was invited to perform at the ICA as part of the Leigh Bowery memorial night alongside Mark Feehily, Ryan Styles and Sue Tilley. This followed champagne and nibbles with Lamé and Jarvis Cocker at the top of the BT Tower so March was a lovely month for it.
I also filmed a pilot with NYC's Murray Hill for Channel 4, I think old showbiz people would say it was 'in the pipeline'
As spring awoke I began my first directing gig with fellow chub performer Amy Lamé at Battersea Arts Centre. We spent the next 8 months rolling around the floor, splashing paint around, inventing ways of making coffee without a coffee maker (or sometimes even coffee), browsing in provincial Evans stores and eating anything that had Ameretto in it - all in the name of her new solo show Unhappy Birthday (see the 2012 bit below on that!)
June saw the launch of my newest project Burger Queen - a beauty pageant, game show, cookery show for fatsos. 16 fatties flabbed it out for the title which went to the gorge Nina Neon. A huge success that I couldn't have done without my chub gang Sami, Amy, Annabel and Flick. June also brought with her my second cover - The Independent!
Festival season kicked in and I checked in at Glastonbury, Lovebox & Latitude - shortly followed by a week of development at the Contact for Unhappy Birthday and launch of the EYHO podcast TVs:AM - what a summer!
July I started working on a Christmas project, this felt wrong. I also performed at Paloma Faiths birthday and made friends with Terry Tibbs, as you do.
August saw the annual retreat to the other side of the country for the Fringe festival and EYHO's 2nd variety run - they loved us. Again. Once on safe soil and back into the routine of not drinking at noon in Scotland I got my teeth into DIY:8 - a Live Art Development Agency initiative developed in collaboration with Artsadmin (national), Fierce (West Midlands), Live at LICA/Nuffield Theatre (North West), PLATFORM (national), Text Festival (North West), Whitstable Biennale (South East), and Yorkshire Sculpture Park (Yorkshire) - what a mouthful - find out what I did here.
October left me abandoned for a week in a old house near the Essex coast as an experiment to see if artists could make comedic work - I blogged alot that week and it wasn't very funny stuff - here is Day 1 - am I funnier now? Have I ever been funny? I also presented my first academic paper to a bunch of academic folk at Performance Matters. I Am Legend.
November and EYHO get their second Grant for the Arts Award to present a new piece at the Riverside Studios titled 'Violence' - this should be fresh in your memory so I won't bore you but here is a lovely video we made for it
December - The is a special month and the month I am writing this in. It has invited me to become a Duckie Associate Artist and begin to perform Copyright Christmas in the main house of the Barbican - you can see older blogs for info and documentation of me having a ball being Judi Dench and being all theatre and stuff.
Inshort I have massively enjoyed this year and what you see is only what I can remember - thank you for watching, bearing with me and laughing at my outfits. 2012 has already shaped itself up to look like the next stage / step / slap in the face - here is a few bits to wet you appetite:
March 2012 - Burger Queen returns to The RVT every Thursday
April 2012 - My first commision with the Roundhouse and a limited run of 4 nights only titled 'Camp'
May 2012 - Unhappy Birthday starring Lamé at CPT
I love you.