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The Cagebirds: Letting The Bird Out Of The Cage

As a theatremaker, there is always apprehension, excitement and pure terror when putting your work on stage.

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The cast from The Cagebirds brought their energy and creativity to the production!

The cast from The Cagebirds brought their energy and creativity to the production!

copyright: brian tomlinson photography / black sheep collective

There is a desire to impress and amaze, to inspire, to change, to antagonise. You want your work to be memorable and resonate with the individuals who have attended and shared that liminal experience.

For five weeks my production of The Cagebirds was under incubation; slowly developing, finding life in a very safe space where it was loved, respected and nurtured by everyone involved. As a director, when you take your production into a theatre, you have to detach all those maternal instincts and allow it to stretch its wings and fly. I really struggled to do this with The Cagebirds.

Don't get me wrong, the piece was very well received and certainly got the attention of the audience - which is what we wanted to achieve - but a part of me really couldn't let go. I think what was difficult was not having the opportunity to justify and support any of the assumptions that were made from the piece.

I received lots of mixed feedback. Some loved it, some didn't get it, some it really affected and felt it went too far; and it all affected me like it never had before. It was as if I had been judged personally by the audience. Maybe this was because I had put everything I had into this piece? I 'd also loaded a tremendous amount of pressure on myself by both performing and directing.

I think I just wanted to speak out about why I interpreted it the way I did. A Q&A would have been a solution, and the cast agreed to share our interpretation and reasoning behind our choices.

"The whole performance was what I had envisioned and more!"

It wouldn't have been half of what it was without the truly committed actors and collaborators who brought their energy and creativity; and with the vibrant and abstract costumes from Susan Lee Burton (Spike Productions) and an imaginative lighting and sound design by Joe Allen, The Cagebirds became theBlack Sheep Collective's most polished piece to date.

I believe the power and potential of this show is truly great (even if I do say so myself) and Black Sheep will be looking to take the piece to other small intimate venues around the country.

This won't be last time the 'Wild One' is released.

Until next time ...


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About Georgia Tillery ...


Georgia grew up in Milton Keynes interested in drama and performance from a young age. She left MK to attend LIPA (Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts) where she studied Community Drama.

During her time in Liverpool, she absorbed the Arts and Culture scene of the city and feel in love with vibrancy and diversity of the arts there. She also studied at ITI (International Theatre Institute) in Singapore where she observed and researched mime and physical theatre as part of a placement.

On returning to Milton Keynes after graduating, along with Danny, they set up Black Sheep Collective CIC in order to fill the gap in the arts scene of Milton Keynes.

Since setting up the organisation, Georgia has written and directed several fringe theatre shows including 'Where's Alice?' and 'Who's Alice?' a twisted adaptation of Alice in Wonderland and most recently 'The Cagebirds' by David Campton. She has established her own style of work nurturing and guiding young talent. She manages and facilitates the Black Sheep creative learning and community outreach program both in Milton Keynes and Northampton.

Georgia is always striving to push the boundaries with her work, allowing opportunities for an audience to question and challenge their beliefs also with an alternative dark twist.


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