Emergency 2017

Emergency at Z Arts is Word of Warning’s annual foray into what’s new, different and emerging in the fine line that exists between performance art and theatre.  This is ‘Manchester’s micro-marathon of the bizarre and the beautiful’, featuring a mix of durational performance and staged theatre. Running from noon to 10pm, with a full evening performance schedule of shows running 15 – 20 minutes, you can dip in and out, experience whatever you like.

Durational performers include:

Jelly and I Scream

Alex Billingham – Jelly & I Scream – the ultimate (grown up) brat’s birthday party.  Set in a paddling pool filled with balloons the performer engages with the audience in the gallery space as if a petulant child.

Vijay Patel – Asperger’s Question Time – ‘a playful journey into the Asperger’s mind’, the audience of 20 ask random questions of the performer who finds this type of interaction difficult; nicely done.

Dolls House

Paula Davy & Gilda Lockheart – Dolls House – ‘a re-enaction of childhood trauma’ through the destruction and repair of childhood dolls.  Strangely mesmerising to watch.

Johanna Bolton – I Twang! – predicting the future based on your choice of elastic band shape, based on the ancient Chinese ideas of I Ching.  If you’re interested in seeing my specific reading you can look here.

What I’m Worth

Gameshow – What I’m Worth – Two performers count out tiddlywinks, each one representing a pound spent on sustaining a person’s life through health, housing, culture, education.

Laura Napier – Reject – Performer Beatrice Scirocchi reads a year’s worth of rejection letters received by sculptor Laura Napier, examining the etiquette of letting someone down gently.

Briggsy + Hawk (photo: Tamsin Drury)

Briggs & Hawk Dance Theatre – HandsON – An immersive performance using headphones, three dancers weave through the audience to explore male behaviour and why we don’t express our emotions in public.  Intimate and engaging.



From 5pm the focus turns to staged performances in three venues throughout Z Arts:

Katy Dye & Craig Manson – The Cat’s Mother – A superb piece where the performers take on cat personae to demonstrate how we love cuteness, and attractiveness.  ‘We want to critique the crassness of the idea that humans who are more photogenic, attractive, young and privileged are more deserving of our compassion’.  A great example of using innovative form to present an important message in a new way.

Krissi Musiol – Work It Out! – A performance that works through physical and cerebral issues, taking the form of a workout, but looking at the world’s bigger problems.

Jon Coleman – Two Suns in the Sunset – A mix of storytelling and lecture, a silver space suit and images of distant galaxies, questioning whether and how life might exist elsewhere in the universe.

Tom Estes – The Speculator (main photo) – exploring how fantasy and illusion are an integral part of our everyday lives, this performance questions how the digital world affects our lives.

TukaWach – How the Hares are Dying – a compelling piece of physical theatre that examines self sacrifice and transformation through a performance as a hare – ‘for me the Hare is a symbol of reincarnation’.

Matt & Nath – don’t try this at home – a surprising and clever performance; two male wrestlers inhabit a fight ring and spar verbally around their memories of ‘maleness’.

Emergency is an annual event held at Z Arts, 30 September 2017.

Theatre lover, amateur director, occasional actor, writer.

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