mindflow

mindflow consists of five audio-visual pieces about the experience of living with depression. To play each of the pieces, click on a link below.

KARL, a nineteen year-old, first year student in his first term at university.

THERESA, a thirty year old mother with a baby girl of three months.

JANE, a theatre director in her forties.

PAUL, an unemployed builder in his late forties, married with two children aged eight and ten.

DOT, a retired teacher in her early sixties who lives alone and has recently been diagnosed with angina.

The aim of the five pieces is to capture the inner thoughts of five fictional characters, all different in age, background and symptoms but who share a vulnerability to mood disorders. These characters’ “inner voices” are heard at various moments along their journey through depression towards balance and recovery.

The voices are accompanied by film of the movement of water in nature, to invite a meditative acknowledgement of the healing potential of natural phenomena.

As a series, the aim of the five pieces is to reflect the richness and diversity of the experience of mood disorders, to contribute to a breaking down of the stigma against depression and bipolar disorder and to increase awareness of these common conditions.

The five pieces were created by playwright Daniel Jamieson in collaboration with a number of other creative artists, during a ten-month artistic residency (2012/13) in the Mood Disorders Centre at the University of Exeter. The residency was awarded to Jamieson by the Leverhulme Trust.

The process of creating the pieces involved Daniel Jamieson:

  • Talking to members of the Mood Disorders Centre’s Lived Experience Group.
  • Talking to staff members at the Centre whose research and clinical experience relate to the fictional characters.
  • Reading and researching.
  • Writing draft “scripts” for the five voices.
  • Gathering extensive feedback, and then re-working the pieces until they rang true.
  • Working with a director, a film maker, a sound designer and five actors to record the voices and set them to film.

Daniel Jamieson has worked with Theatre Alibi over a period of twenty-three years as writer and adaptor, performer and Artistic Director. Daniel has written five plays for BBC Radio 4. He has also written for Polka Theatre, London Bubble, Theatre Royal Plymouth and Northampton Theatres, including the award-winning ‘Flathampton‘.

The creative artists with whom Jamieson worked extensively to make mindflow and without whose generous contribution they would not exist are:

Director and vocal coach, Dorinda Hulton, who directed the actors and synthesised the elements of each piece. Dorinda has been working as a director and dramaturg in association with Echo-Arts, Cyprus, on either side of the military border, since 2003 www.dorindahulton.co.uk. She is an Honorary University Fellow in the Drama Department at Exeter University, Artistic Consultant to Theatre Alibi, UK., and an Intermediate Senior Iyengar Yoga teacher. Her recent publications include a chapter in Classics in the Modern World (Oxford University Press 2013) and she is currently commissioned by Routledge to co-author a DVD/booklet entitled ‘Yoga and Actor Training’.

Film maker, Peter Hulton, who filmed and edited an extensive bank of visual material in response to the written pieces and set it with the “voices”. Peter is a documentary film maker and writer. He established Arts Archives – an international digital moving image resource for performance research initiated by the Council of Europe – and the Exeter Digital Archives at Exeter University. He has created award-winning DVDs for a number of international publishers. He is a past recipient of the John Whiting Award for New Playwrighting and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts.

Sound designer, Duncan Chave, who recorded the voices and mixed the soundtrack of each piece. Duncan is a sound designer, composer, musician and programmer and has frequently worked with Theatre Alibi, most recently on ‘Curiosity Shop’. He recently wrote the music for an adaptation of ‘Gulliver’s Travels’ for the Curve Theatre, Leicester. He has also worked extensively with Exeter Northcott, the National Theatre, English Touring Theatre, Foursight and on West End musicals including ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’, ‘The Producers’ and ‘The King and I’.

The actors who play the characters are:

  • Joshua Clarke, who plays Karl. Joshua graduated this year from the University of Exeter with a First Class BA (Hons) in Drama. He recently played the title role of 'Gilbert' in Sitting Duck Theatre Company's sell-out production of 'Gilbert and Sullivan: The Musical' at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. At the university, Joshua has been musical director for: 'Little Shop of Horrors'; 'The Sorcerer'; 'Copacabana'; 'The Pirates of Penzance'; and 'Little Women : The Musical'. He is currently musical director of the Richard Dale Theatre School in Exeter and is studying for a PGCE in English.
  • Eileen Dillon, who plays Jane. Eileen is a graduate of Exeter University Drama Department & Goldsmiths College London and has fifteen years’ experience of working with professional artists and/or community groups to create live performances that interpret sites or historical events. Locally she has worked with Wrights & Sites, Northcott Theatre, Wren Music, Magic Carpet, National Trust, Crediton Arts, Exeter University & Exeter College. She is currently developing a promenade performance with four rural schools to interpret the impact of WW1 on the agricultural communities that surround National Trust Killerton House. Performances, Killerton, June 2014.
  • Martin Harvey, who plays Paul. Martin trained as an actor at RADA in the 1970’s. After graduating he worked as an actor at Clwyd Theatr Cymru in North Wales for seven years, playing a wide variety of roles from Romeo to Hal in Joe Orton’s Loot. He then moved into theatre direction, eventually as a resident director at the Northcott Theatre Exeter (1986-91). He now combines working as a lecturer in the Drama Department at Exeter University with developing and directing new work for the stage.
  • Jan Hookway, who plays Dot. Jan has been involved in drama/theatre for most of her adult life. She has performed many roles at the Northcott Theatre, been involved with new writing projects and Whiskyjack Productions and worked with Reverb at the Bikeshed Theatre. In 2008 she travelled to Mumbai to appear in a feature film. More recently she has performed with Uncommon Players in 'Speaking in Tongues', 'Talking Heads' monologues and Samuel Beckett's 'Endgame'.
  • Lizzy Pennington, who plays Theresa. Lizzy is a graduate of Exeter University Drama Department. She is an Actor, Producer and Community Artist in Exeter. She creates solo pieces, and works as an associate artist with site specific company, Burn The Curtain, performance collective, Blind Ditch and a regular collaborator with film collective, Syndrome Pictures. Lizzy has worked as an Associate Producer with Wide Awake Devon, and works as an independent producer with choreographer Jane Mason, and outdoor theatre projects with Theatre Rush and Eccentric Exeter. She creates community arts and youth projects in Exeter, and runs the Freefall Youth Arts group at Exeter Phoenix.

In “Dot”, the “Pie Jesu” from Fauré’s “Requiem” is sung by Celia Taverner (soprano) with Richard Taverner (piano).

Many thanks

Many thanks are due to the members of the Lived Experience Group and staff of the Mood Disorders Centre, to John Allsup, Tony Culley, Julie Garry, Raye Gicquel, Stephanie Jibson, Simon Robshaw, Mary Ryan, Joanne Welsman, Prof. Ed Watkins, Dr. Kim Wright, Dr. Paul Farrand, Prof. Willem Kuyken, Dr. Heather O’Mahen, Dr. Anke Karl and Prof. Eugene Mullan. Also, particular thanks to Carole Pluckrose, Maryanne McCardle, Dinah Lees, Joanna Mann and Louise Webb for their invaluable advice and to Jean Usher for arranging the song recording.

Thanks are also due to Charlie Dibble, Stacey Zerbe and Charlotte Keetch for all their help and support, to John Staplehurst, Juanita Gill, Nikki Sved, Annemarie MacDonald, Annie Chave, the Exeter University Drama Department and to Theatre Alibi.

Enquiries and feedback please to: dancjam@btinternet.com.