Blog

19th March 2014

The Second Residency

Written by Roshana Rubin-MayhewOur second residency (weeks three and four) of What Is Left? was spent in the North West, based in Lancaster…well, in an idyllic cottage in the middle of nowhere: Roeburnscar.Meals around the large table, late nights in front of the wood burning stove, waking up to the sound of the stream, opening my bedroom door onto the patio and gazing out at the lichen covered trees. This place was an utter joy to leave from and come back to. Though I have to admit a part of me did miss Ellie’s (slowly deflating) blow up mattress that…

20th February 2014

Generosity & Web Weaving

Roshana, our lovely project manager Kate and I have been on the road working with participants in Yorkshire. We started research for this project over two years ago and so I’ve been looking back at what I wrote about it at its start to see what’s emerged.The residency started with a visit to our first participant Helen. The last time I visited Helen, I had been looking to source some ‘Queens Green’ crockery as a prop. Whilst I had hoped that she might lend me some items (she has one of the largest collections in the UK), I didn’t expect…

28th October 2013

Unfinished Histories

Below is a talk I gave as part of Unfinished Histories on the subject of Theatre and Therapy. It is something that I have been thinking about a lot recently and I still have more questions than answers at this stage. You can find out more about Unfinished Histories hereI am EllieI am a womanI am a performance makerI am making a seven part body of work about bereavement called The Grief Series. Each part correlates to a different section of a seven stage Grief Model and for each part I collaborate with a different artist working in a different…

16th September 2013

Death Cafe Comes To Leeds

Etiquette of Grief and Death Cafestage@leeds, University of Leedsstage@leeds.ac.uk26 September 2013, 7.30pmLeeds Bereavement Forum and local artist Ellie Harrison have joined forces with stage@leeds at the University of Leeds to present a very special evening of entertainment and discussion around the topics of bereavement and grief.Beginning with a performance of Ellie Harrison's playful and provocative one-woman show Etiquette of Grief, the evening will then move on to a Death Cafe hosted by Ellie and members of the Leeds Bereavement Forum team. Death Cafe is an international movement that encourages individuals and groups to host their own events which offer informal…

14th September 2013

All Go

Well it’s been all go at Team Grief. I’ve been mentally spinning plates for the remaining parts of The Grief Series. I’ve been taking walks both solo and with artists Matthew Bellwood, Pauline Mayers, Sally Lemsford and Jamie Fletcher as research for part 5 and 6. Adam Young, Bethany Wells and I have begun to redevelop part 4 under the new title The Unfair. There has been collaborator finding, research and plotting for part 7. And we have our last dates of Etiquette of Grief in Barnsley, Leeds and Glasgow. For now, here is a sneak peek of very early…

11th July 2013

Two Shires Ghost Walk

You can follow the journey in pictures as you read by going to FlickrToday my mother took me on a walk around Oxford.Except my mother died twelve years ago and I was in Leeds. Whilst sorting through endless boxes of my mothers papers a few years ago I stumbled across a walking tour she had written, perhaps for friends of our family visiting Oxford. I don’t know and can’t ask. I think it is a kind of ghost walk. I would like to do the walk in Oxford where I grew up but we are more mobile now and since…

19th June 2013

Practising What I Preach

I have been making The Grief Series for 3 years now.Over those three years I have spoken to countless people: people who laugh at death because they still can’t believe it actually happens and people for whom it is an imminent reality. People tell me their stories. From every conceivable type of person there have been laughter and tears. Other people often ask if this is ‘heavy’ or whether I find it a burden to listen to all these stories of grief. I have rarely felt any sense of burden in listening to others. I find it humbling and also…

4th June 2013

Making The Rage Receptacle

Ellie: Hello. Well Team Grief have been very busy. But now the dust has settled, the Rage Receptacle is tucked up safe, here is a belated blog originally posted on the West Yorkshire Playhouse Website. You can also see some articles about the Rage Receptacle by clicking the links belowExeunt MagazineVideo from WYPA younger Theatre articleOn play, plays and collaborationA performance artist, a sculptor and an architectural designer walk in to a theatre. This is not a joke. This is our process.Collaboration. It is a word we love using in the arts community. But what does it mean to collaborate…

14th December 2012

Bill On What Is Left?

Bill: What is Left, for me, was a powerful and emotionally engaging exhibition. Interestingly, for me, this a part of the Grief Series that I have not had too much contact with, so going along to the exhibition I was not too sure of what to expect, how it would be formatted and what the atmosphere would be like.On entering the gallery I was taken by the amount of people that were totally engrossed and engaged with the artwork. Each of the ‘portraits’ consist of four elements: the photograph, the audio interview, a transcript booklet and a seat. The concept…

14th December 2012

Holding On And Letting Go

Holding on and letting go… and borrowing thingsI am a hoarder. And whilst I am often embarrassed by it, I love to own things and have those things around me. I am currently collaborating with photographer Roshana Rubin-Mayhew. As we work it becomes clear how different my feelings about photographs are to hers. It is about the present moment for her, about the taking of photographs rather than the having them. If she is engaging with something or someone in a particularly meaningful way, taking a photograph adds another dimension to her engagement with it or them at that moment.As…