RICHARD III BY WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE
(Site-specific theatre, Wales Millennium Centre, 2015. Guardian critic's choice)
Associate movement director
A ground-breaking all-female production for Wales Millennium Centre, performed in the never before used roof void space. This promenade production challenges preconceived ideas about how and where Shakespeare should be staged and who it is for. Seeking to address inequality in the theatre industry, Omidaze created powerful roles for women both on stage and in the creative team. Vanessa-Faye led workshops in Lecoq practices & techniques during the research and development phase in November 2013, funded by Arts Council of Wales. She joined the team for the rehearsals and performances in Spring 2015.
Lynn Gardner’s CRITIC'S CHOICE (Guardian)
"Vanessa-Faye's work was flexible and responsive to the ensemble and the research nature of the project. As a director, I found it inspirational and thought provoking." Yvonne Murphy, producer/director Omidaze Productions
“Within moments one does not see gender, just the characters being portrayed. Fresh and exciting out of the traditional. Do not miss this production.” Jacqui Onions, The Public Reviews
SWEENEY TODD: HIS LIFE TIMES AND EXECUTION
(Theatre, new writing. Shortlisted for Total Theatre Award 2009, Time Out Critics Choice )
This play recasts Sweeney Todd as a clown in the tradition of Buster Keaton and Charlie Chaplin. Sweeney Todd is a black comedy - combining slap stick humour, grotesque characters, physical storytelling and live cabaret music. It premiered at Jackson's Lane, had a UK tour and was shortlisted for a Total Theatre Award in 2009. Vanessa-Faye also composed the music for this show, and co-created the play.
THE PRINCESS AND THE PEA (Short film)
The SHIP OF FOOLS
(Theatre, new writing. Edinburgh Fringe and International tour, 2003-2004)
This piece of new writing premiered at the Edinburgh Fringe, and starred an international ensemble. Vanessa-Faye was director and co-creator of this show with AmStramGram theatre company.
ABC DEAD (Short film)
A collaboration with film maker Camilla Robinson, inspired by the dark tales of Edward Gorey, ABCDead is a gothic tale of sadness and woe, tracing the decline and fall of Amy, Basil, Cynthia and Doris who all come to untimely ends, in the most fashionable attire. Showcasing the designs of shoe designer Tracey Neuls and accessories designed by Dean Sidaway, it premiered at the ICA as part of the London Short Film Festival, part of the official selection for the Aesthetica Short Film Festival (ASFF). It was 2015 Funny Women Awards finalist and featured on The Huffington Post.
(Winner of the coup de coeur award from Canal + in 2003)
Movement director, assistant director, producer.
A tale of lust, love and a kilo of sausages from film-maker Bruce Burgess, filmed in France with an entirely French cast. Vanessa-Faye directed the actors in this short film, which she also co-produced.
Winner of the coup de coeur award from Canal + in 2003.
WEST END WORKSHOPS
As performer and workshop leader Vanessa-Faye delivered puppetry workshops for The National Theatre’s War Horse in the West End. She also worked with The National Theatre to help create the content of the workshops.
FOUND IN THE GROUND BY HOWARD BARKER
(New writing. Riverside Studios, 2012)
Movement consultant. Performer.
Drawing on the elements of Butoh, Vanessa-Faye created the movement style for the part of Macedonia with playwright Howard Barker for The Riverside Studios and The Wrestling School.
OTHER MOVEMENT DIRECTION WORK
March of The Red Death Lates, Gideon Reeling/Punchdrunk
Shakespeare Schools Festival
About movement direction
Movement work can focus on the creation of a single character or the entire ensemble, it can create special effects and choreograph scene changes, and consolidate the style of a show. For a good link describing the work of a movement director, watch this video from the National Theatre.
Originally an athlete, Lecoq set up a theatre school to explore movement and theatre. Lecoq’s mantra was “tout bouge”- everything moves, and movement can be, well... moving! We tell stories through the articulation of words and body. Lecoq's teaching encourages the performer to create character and space by drawing inspiration from the detailed observation of the live and inanimate things which surround us. His classes included rigorous mime and set-pieces, and a strong focus on breath. He was also a master of clowning.
Butoh is a Japanese form which originated after World War II in response to Hiroshima, and which typically uses playful and grotesque imagery, taboo topics, extreme or absurd environments. It is usually performed with slow hyper-controlled motion. Vanessa-Faye drew on this style in her work with the playwright Howard Barker for the show Found in the Ground (Riverside Studios), creating a slow march ofthe victims of extermination camps- "All the Ann Franks"- for the surreal play about a dying Nuremberg judge and the legacy of war. It was also used for directing scene changes in War Horse, creating a stylised, macabre way to clear the stage and change scene.