Limn Gaza, The Joy of Return

Review in Issue 5-2 | Summer 1993

Most site-specific performance cannot help but question or bring attention to the nature or context. Whether this be deliberately integral or merely hinted upon simply by being placed outside of a ‘conventional theatre setting’ a site always raises specific questions of situation. Limn Gaza’s The Joy of Return, set on the Bluebell Railway, in the heart of the Sussex countryside, is no exception to this. The Joy of Return extends this question to include an examination of the journey to and from a performance.

The performance itself focuses on time: The Supreme Ticket Collector stealing time; the steam train’s journey through time; and a use of a variety of periods and histories. How I arrived at the Bluebell railway and how long it had taken me, became crucial. The journey from London via tube, train and bus, and the journey back via bus, train and taxi gave the performance an added weight. The mad rush to arrive on time and the mad rush home again gave an added significant to the suspended time of the steam train journey and the following performance. Although the actual performance had a few teething problems and some difficulties in its cohesion, it was an ambitious project that really managed to pose questions around our relationship to time through a clever and very specific choice of site.

Presenting Artists
Presenting Festival

Bluebell Railway

Date Seen
  1. May 1993

This article in the magazine

Issue 5-2
p. 17