Recovery – my response…

Image of Natalie Cursio and Shannon BottNat and Shannon Dancing

Recently I saw Recovery a new performance work by Shannon Bott, Nat Cursio, Simon Ellis and collaborators (above images are by Rachel Roberts). It was on at The Substation.

Simon has written a lovely note to the performers you can read here.

I was really moved by the work. For me it was a contemporary ritual for grieving. I wrote the following response…


Recovery – 5th December 2014

A ritual in grief. Black. Intimate. Movement at close range. A gripping hand. Breath. A big open space going to dusk, nothing artificial. People close together.

And then we were simply asked if we would like to walk down stairs, we sit in a little room together and we share a few words about loss. We are let in via a small door, a glimpse of the events that led to this piece. No detail, just clarity and invitation.

Then they move it for us. For themselves. We watch through a piece of metal punctured with thousands of holes, they are simultaneously clear and continuously reconstructed – a moving pointillism.

Throw, recover, fall, jump, catch, hold. Throw, recover, fall, jump, catch…

Holding my hand Nat says to me –

Would you like to put your bag down?


Yes, that’s better.

She had walked me up the stairs, my bag slung across my shoulder, uncomfortably heavy. So human, no ‘performance artifice’ that would make this brief conversation impossible. We were making the work with them. We had their permission to be imperfect.

We stand in a circle as friends and share a drink. Appreciating the intimacy we had just been invited in to. Grateful that art exists to ease the mending of our grief and loss.


Artist, advisor, coach.
I find the real problem, make the difficult easy
and tell a great story.

Check out more stories in the category: In the Village