THROUGH THE CRACKS: Genevieve Butler

See A ROSE AMONG HORNS by Genevieve Butler at #CTF2017!

CTF: Why do you make experimental performance?

How can I answer this? (Insert: existential crisis) What is experimental? (Insert: melt down). My work focuses on the human body; I have always been fascinated by how we communicate, make habits, and what is passed on generationally. I love to develop characters. With each personality, I discover the world anew. Through characters, I get to re-program my brain and body to be more empathetic to the personalities I encounter when I am being regular me. In my free time I am constantly experimenting, concocting and devising scenarios in which these characters can thrive, be heard and understood. Sometimes these scenarios reveal the characters undoing. Which is the case in A Rose Among Horns. What is appealing to me is seeing how people get into shitty situations and then what happens next.

With A Rose among Horns I am mashing up a whole-lot-a elements. We have big questions (like “one’s propriety is valuable to whom?”) with big personalities, (seven commedia dell arte archetypal characters to be exact), and a small human (me) selling this ‘experiment’ as a one-person show.

CTF: What’s the best thing about physical comedy?

Most of how we read and interpret the world is through observation. Physical comedy exploits that. We may say one thing but the body will say another. The body doesn’t lie. I always look at stand up comedians and think, ‘wow, most of their material would be way funnier if they could just act out the scenario’. With words, we often know why something is funny. We can unpack that. But when we see something that sets us off, more often than not, it’s because deep down we relate. We saw something that resonated with who we are.

CTF: A highlight of developing and/or performing this work so far?

How audience’s respond; people coming up after the show; confessing how they are that particular character; people proclaiming that their best friend/boyfriend is just like so-and-so character; when the audience invests heavily in the narrative and the situations/scenarios presented in the work.

CTF: What are three words/phrases that describe your body of work?

Enthralling, visual and memorable.

CTF: What can audiences expect?

A physical comedy spectacle that examines themes of the human condition in small Australian
rural towns.

The lives of six ‘oh-so- close-to-home’ characters. Their dysfunctional neuroses could be a friend, family member or even…you.

This show tackles themes of female independence and the archaic notion of Prince Charming in the world, where chivalry is dead, and even the men want to be rescued.

CTF: Have you been to Crack Theatre Festival before?

Last year was my first time. Over the space of four days, three actors and I brought to life a script I had written: a play, performed in French, titled Éden. Connecting with exceptional artists who performed during the festival, with those who worked on creating the festival, and the people who attended and supported the festival, was definitely the highlight.