Artistic Directors Message - 2017
Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, he mihi maioha ki a koutou
Be you, Bravely.
Waiho i te toipoto,
Kaua i te toiroa
Let us keep close
Together, not far apart
He aroha whakatō,
He aroha ka puta mai
If kindness is sown,
Then kindness is what you shall receive.
I am thinking a lot about support, kindness and how to be your best, full, self, as we head into 2017. I want to embrace these qualities full on and headlong. I want to be kinder, be more supportive and I want to be myself, bravely. I also want to encourage and support others to do the same. Why? Because I think these qualities matter. I make and work in theatre because I want to examine, explore and create what matters to us as humans and because the process and product of this is a force for good in the world and I want more good in the world.
Our show, The Wholehearted, is touring NZ this year and I can hardly wait to share this show with our audiences, get to hear what it provokes in them and offer workshops where we can explore and share ideas from the show.
I love our show The Wholehearted because of what it examines and how I saw it touch, connect and impact with our audiences in 2016. It embraces and encourages vulnerability, letting down one’s guard, being present and deeply seen so that you are in the life you live, fully and bravely.
I desire more conversations on how our work impacts with people and how it matters and has meaning for people. I want to understand what a show or a workshop provokes within people so that we can continue the conversation of what it is to be human and create places where our sense of community and belonging is stronger.
I want this engagement, where possible to be real, face to face and up close, not on FB, or twitter etc so that we are brave enough to look each other in the eyes and show ourselves and be seen.
Our post show forums are the places where we are privileged to exchange thoughts, feelings and questions about what the show has provoked for our audience. We make our shows for our audiences, they are very much with us in the rehearsal room, so it is one of the best parts of the journey to hear how it has ‘landed’ with them.
Alongside our tour of The Wholehearted, we are also continuing to develop and grow our practitioners in directing. Over the past 2 years we have offered The Directors’ Lab where those who are keen to explore and see what directing entails can do it safely and bravely. This meant in 2016 that both new shows were co-directed my myself and new directors Scotty Cotter and Miriama McDowell.
This year we see Scotty directing the new emerging artist’s production Hope Burns, with director in training and long term company member, Tuyet Nguyen as his co-director.
These are exciting times for Massive as we see the growth and expertise of the company members infusing all aspects of our activity. Further to my desire to be more supportive and create supportive structures, I want to find the best ways to stand at Scotty and Tuyet’s backs so that they can create in the best possible environment. I am embracing and loving this new role of mentor, and loving the learning around it for me.
Finally, I want to find ways to engage in a meaningful way with other arts practitioners and specifically theatre companies in our community. Again, I desire more conversations on how each other’s work impacts with people and how it matters and has meaning for people. I want to understand why others do what they do in theatre, what are they labouring for? What is the change we want to see?
I hope this will lead to more understanding, more curiosity, more appreciation of each other and ourselves, which will in turn make for a richness in our lives and a stronger more connected arts community. I believe so strongly that the arts are a force for good, and I want to keep finding all the ways our work can enrich the lives and communities we are a part of.
I encourage anyone reading this to please connect with us at Massive Company in any way you might like to. I am keen to have cups of coffee with anyone who would like to begin or continue a conversation about what we (both do), the whys and the how’s, share stories of success, of challenge - anything that gets us talking, connecting and engaging.
I wish you all a year full of kindness, support and being you, bravely.
Noho ora mai
Sam Scott MNZM
Artistic Director - Massive Company