KC Where Are You? On The Road

February 11, 2013

Where are you right now?

Here is my post, a little late, from my visit in early January to Philadelphia to attend IPAY. This annual conference brings together arts presenters and producers from around the world to discuss
our artistic practice relating to the creation and development of performing arts work for young audiences, as well as giving us the opportunity to watch over 40 performances. This year, l saw shows
from Australia, Canada, the USA, the UK, the Netherlands, Finland, Spain and Belgium. The caliber of the shows was fabulous, and l met a number of great artists and producers who are creating
exciting work that l plan to bring to future Festivals. l stayed on the same street as all the theatres so was able to walk everywhere in the sunshine.


What other attractions are you planning to see while you are there?

While l was there, l took some time to visit the Mutter Museum , America?s finest medical museum full of medical oddities. It was
fascinating looking at the collections of specimens, medical instruments that look like something you would find in a horror movie and models of various diseases.


I also went to see the Liberty Bell . Having grown up in the UK, l had no idea the significance of the bell and its importance as a symbol of
individual freedom.


Did you meet anyone that made you squeal with excitement? Who and why?

I met Christine Johnson the fabulous creator and performer of Fluff, a show from Australia. Christine is a brilliant and stunning woman who transforms into the most grotesque yet fantastic
character in her show. Her obvious talent and gentle nature made her performance even more powerful. It was such a pleasure to meet her.


What made this trip successful for you? Number one highlight?

l was wowed by the caliber of the work being created by talented artists from around the world. Seeing the shows live is so important as video never captures the work at its best, and watching the
work with children in the audience is invaluable as they let us know immediately whether they are engaged or not.


The highlight for me was witnessing two brothers watching Fluff. They spent much of the performance on the edge of their seats fluctuating between ?oh no what is going to happen?? and laughing
their heads off. It was a joy to see them engage with the work and express themselves so freely.

Where are you heading next?

I am off to Ottawa at the end of February to meet with the Canadian Children?s Festival Association (CCFA) to discuss the possibility of creating performer tours to bring to each of the Festivals
some fabulous international work.


Top photo: Katharine with Kevin O?Loghlin and Oslo from ?Love? by Australia’s Terrapin Puppet Theatre