Through The Senses Podcast
Want to find out more about our project ‘Through The Senses’? Then listen to our brand new podcast and/or read the transcript of the conversation below.
This podcast is a sit down conversation with Orla Connolly and Ebony Dark Rose, the creative assistant and lead artist respectively on ‘Through The Senses’; an alternative walking tour of Brighton that explores the visually impaired experience of navigating the city.
We discuss Brighton, accessibility, compassion, the project, the workshops, Ebony’s practice and what visually impaired people and sighted people can do to make their experience of Brighton safer. The podcast is complete with all of the ambient noises of Brighton’s remarkable soundscape.
Linked to this podcast is the route that made up the tour; we started at the clock tower in Brighton and navigated our way to the Pier so you may wish to open the route and listen to the podcast whilst you do the route yourself guided by the route map which you can find here.
people, Brighton, visually impaired, workshop, London, bit, places, tour, cabaret, seafront, road, city, bar, guess, navigating, organisation, participants, spaces, sea, ebony
Hello, my name is Orla Connolly and I have been the creative assistant on ‘Through The Senses’; an alternative walking tour of Brighton that explores the visually impaired experience of navigating the city. This tour was delivered by Sussex Dance Network in March 2022 in collaboration with visually impaired performance artist Ebony Rose Dark and was funded as part of the ABCD plan for Cultural Recovery. We want to say a big thank you to our partners; Brighton & Hove City Council, Arts Council England, Brilliant Brighton Business Improvement District and the Welcome Back fund all of whom made this project possible.
Ebony is a visually impaired performance artist who is based in Brighton and is very experienced in and passionate about accessibility both in and out of the arts world. So this podcast is a sit down conversation with Ebony at Brighton Palace Pier. We discuss Brighton, accessibility, compassion, the project, the workshops, Ebony’s practice and what Visually impaired people and sighted people can do to make their experience of Brighton safer. The podcast is complete with all of the ambient noises of Brighton’s remarkable soundscape. Linked to this podcast is the route that made up the tour; we started at the clock tower and navigated our way to the Pier so you may wish to open the route and listen to the podcast whilst you do the route yourself guided by the route map and Ebony and mine’s conversation or maybe not, either way I hope you enjoy it as much as we enjoyed making it…
If you just want to speak a bit about your experience of Brighton, I guess and how you experience Brighton?
Okay, so my experience of Brighton. I’m going to start from the beginning because I have two different kind of sides, I guess. I have the side were living, I was living near London road. And so that was kind of coming from not conveying not a very hostile and bustling area you’re going into that’s very different to being, living in it. And going through it. So it’s quite different. The only obstacle I had there was bins, yeah.
Wheeley bins. It was like, Wow, I’ve never seen I’ve never experienced anything like it. Walking down the street, and you’ve got bins. And sometimes both sides can have them.
Or you have bins one side and bikes attached to lamp posts. Often have that. And that was like, interesting. What I find in these areas, because it’s not so busy people are very aware of, were very aware of me, so they’d like move out the way or say if you just stop their a moment. I’m doing some work on my house and I’ve got all my tools out in the street. So please hold up and I’ll tell you when you can go by and I’d say thank you very much. People were always letting me know what was kind of going on. Which is very helpful because when builders around in their town, sometimes they can be very vigilant and other times not. So I can literally be walking through and I would not know if there’s an obstruction of some kind. And they won’t necessarily say either to me that’s a little bit irresponsible.
There was one point I walked through I could hear sounds. As I was walking through there were drilling stuff was going everywhere. And yeah, cuz I think in the city in the city itself, people are a little bit more are not so aware that people are actually wrapped up in their mobile phones. And or they’ve got headphones on which I think is dangerous.
I’ve heard some horror stories about people being knocked over with the headphones on and so yeah, it’s very different to be I think that’s that’s different to me is living outside of Brighton city and living inside Brighton city very different. In the thick of tourism constantly because I don’t feel, all that happened in pandemic is people came less.
There was less. I heard less suitcases wheeling down the road. And as things opened up and opened up, that constant wheel of suitcases has become ike huge every day, like whether it’s sunny or rainy or awful weather tourists from up North like to come to Pebble Beach in the south.
Do you find, so through the year do you find like there’s different? Like you just talking about the suitcase wheels like that, like nearly a sign of summer in Brighton or do you find it? It’s consistently like that? It’s consistent consistent. Even the winter time. I mean, in the wintertime, I would in the wintertime to get sunshine or to get anything I’d go abroad.
And also because now Yeah, but but some people Yeah, the difference is is that it’s just less busy. Going around town is a little less busy. Unless there’s an event on.
That can just turn things on its heads quite quickly. Yeah.
From being, from it being dead to there being an event that oh my god, there’s an event on everywhere’s so busy. People are coming down like I’m sure yesterday would have been busy when UB40 were in town.
Yeah. And so do you go like would you go to many events in Brighton and like what’s your experience of that.
So I have been. So when things started opening up, I went to the Speigel tent, to see David Hoyle. That was fun. The staff were very helpful. And I know David, we’ve performed together. So it was amazing to see. And actually at the time, I was thinking he’s come an awful long way. And I haven’t done that journey it was at the time when face masks was still mandatory on public transport.
And I was thinking I haven’t done that big journey yet out of Brighton, right up North.
So for anyone who doesn’t know do you want to give some background about David?
So David Hoyle is a cabaret performer, known as The Devine David from a show back in television channel four back in the day. And then he went into cabaret performs in London a lot, Brighton a lot, Manchester a lot. And so I was I performed with David at the royal vauxhall tavern for six consecutive Thursdays. Just amazing. he pushes me in the right way I wanted to in terms of producing like crazy and great creative, like getting the creative juices going and when you’re around someone whos like that. It really inspires you to keep on like, even as like every week he was like can you just bring it.
And trust in what you know already. So anyway here. I was amazed I think I don’t think I’m ready to do that yet.
At the time I thought I don’t think I’m ready to make that journey. What if I get asked to work in Manchester and lo and behold, the following year, months later or following year, last year, last year I was asked to do something in Manchester, it must have been last year andthen months later I was asked to do something in Manchester and there I was going through the journey the other way around.
And that was, I was pretty nervous, I went on my own. I was like, it was, I actually moved trains and carriages so I was a bit annoyed about that. I was sitting next to a family who were French British they had children and a guy behind me he was coughing a lot and he called his friends to come sit with him and I heard I could hear that’s theres shuffling around in the carriage and I was feeling like lots of people moving around in this carriage. As I left I noticed that most people had moved carriage and I moved into a different carriage but I also need to charge my mobile phone there was seat facing which is facing what I’m facing now but the seats on the side where the disabled area and the doors are where you are but there was a guy sitting there I was thinking I need to sit here and I was over analyzing the coughing and all this.
I really need to charge my phone and I know that here was a charging point.
So I was like do you mind if I sit here and he was like oh no problem. I was thinking please don’t cough and he didn’t cough like at all, He was there for 45 minutes and I was thinking oh, you haven’t coughed I’m so glad and it was really weird and after that I was like okay, well I’ve done a journey now it’s time to try ease myself back in some normality.
So when you go to like events and things just circle back to that little bit yeah, so what’s your experience because obviously like Brighton is so well known because it’s like such a lively city with so much going on. It’d be interesting to like how you experience that or how you find it?
So, I mean, I haven’t been out as much as I was going out before in London because the lockdown has happened yeah so that was, Spiegel tent was great, I went with my friends. It was a really good night. And then I also went to I went to a night at the ironworks and the ironworks I was like an accessible venue where pride was held during the pandemic that was hosting a few performances.
It is accessible though there are few little bits which just mark up to be you know that that they, actually to be fair when I performed there they actually marked up everything which was really great so they respond to access needs even if they’re doing it for the night yeah I haven’t really in terms of the bars yeah, the for example the Charles tap on the corners very good. And I’ve always been very kind of welcoming. And asked if they can help in any way. Very accessible friendly. Yeah, they have disabled toilets as well. so there very Good. Yeah, overall I mean, I’ve always had a good time. I feel that some spaces, some other LGBT spaces, were a bit, so like the whole table service that kind of in some places, I think were not so prepared for the amount of people that would be going.
So it was a bit slower. Sometimes we were left waiting, in one place I was waiting for such a while I actually got up to ask. They said, oh you must sit down, you must sit down! I said I know but I have been here for quite a while. And yeah, again before that. There’s often a problem with, for me, the imposter side, my eyes probably look quite normal whatever normal eyes look like. And so a lot of people they think I can see them making weird faces or expressions or signals.
Which doesn’t really for those who are not confident in saying shouting out or who’s next or what can I get you a kind of thing?
Which I find bizarre working in the bar.
You can’t you can’t ask this question to customers. That can be a bit of a problem where people just don’t feel confident enough to say, Hello, can I help you type thing? That has happened a few places. Yeah. Yeah. So I’m actually doing an awareness, core training for people that work in LGBT spaces to hopefully give them a bit more confidence coming forward. Hi, can I help you type thing or let me know if you want me to walk around the bar so you know what it’s like this kind of thing that what what as soon as bars get busy. It just becomes a bit chaotic basically to get from the table to a bar with loads of people, as a visually impaired person just the whole navigating through a bar and to know what the space is like before people come in, is amazing and so I’m hoping that there will be more open to that kind of offering
Yeah because I mean, like when you say that seems like a really basic access requirement that would like make your experience of a bar so much easier. But also Yeah, I guess it’s just I don’t know maybe because people aren’t aware. Because the second you say it I’m like ya of course that makes a lot of sense.
Yeah, which is why I think a certain set of people are sad that the table service has stopped because of this very thing of going to the bar back, So yeah and waiting in the queue at the bar for a long time and nothing’s happening. So, yeah that’s my experience so far, in pubs its quite different. I find pubs and bars very different and just getting served is not so much a problem at pubs when I used to come here before I lived here, there’s places you just go to because you know the service is so good, James, James Street pub, James Street Tavern…
It’s a really friendly pub. The staff are very friendly, very chatty and the Black Dog at the end again.
Yeah, very chatty. People. Very confident, that makes all the difference to your experience there as well for me, yeah, so I went to a cafe in the South lanes and they asked me what I wanted and I said what kind of food do you do and the staff said oh I can read you the menu if you like and I was like yes actually that would great and yeah that is so cool that is why I will come back here.
Again, people just don’t think about those things. And these days I try to read the menu if its decent enough presented in a decent enough format online, I try and go before, look at the menu before I go to the restaurants or anywhere providing is up to date or it’s not like a photo, some of these menus are actually quite awful like photographs or however they’re put on the website and really not the quality is not that great and is always blurred out so I zoom in on my phone and it is still a black line so yeah and here I have been coming here quite a while yeah, and when it gets warmer I sit on the the table, the next one here and the sun comes directly down, it’s beautiful.
I really lovethe warmth on my skin, like tactile stuff like sensory comforting, yeah, yeah. And here also you got the sound of the seaguls, you get the sound to sea, a lot of ambience.
Yeah, I don’t know if like it’d be picked up on the recording but also the sound of the amusements like in the background
Yeah, I can hear that. Yeah. Yeah, it was funny to be here and that being not on that was quite funny. It was also funny surprising to have a log flume ride.
Oh do they, I’ve never been a friend told me about it my friends came down with her husband and they’re a bit of adrenaline junkies, they’re both adrenaline junkies just go into the sea on a log flume.
So if we were to like to describe Brighton, like if someone hadn’t come here, and you were to describe, like, what is the first thing that comes to you like, What is this? Cuz for me I would like talk about like, visual stuff. I would talk about all of these things. So talking about other senses.
For me, I would say seagulls yeah, the kind of sea air which you get the waves depending on what time of year, wind. If coming in the summertime, I guess I’d say like hotspots for sunshine, but that might be on the beach or on the pier. The places to go to get the sun.
And bars where you can get, nice sunny places you get good sunset, which is here. There’s two bars along the top of the road here.
Yeah, along the seafront.
Yeah. spaces along here also back, you have Amsterdam hotel is a really nice, really nice spot to sit to watch, to watch the sun or like I’ve taken beautiful pictures from my phone zoomed in on the colors of the sky. It’s really nice spot, and the occasional the smell of fish and chips.
Yeah, goes hand in hand with seaguls. It would be really good to hear you speak about the project.
The idea is through the senses is to give people a very sensorial tour of Brighton. So that’s kind of experiencing the vibrancy, the smells, the textures of the floor the sounds and also different ways of getting to places that might not be as obvious, you might not have thought of, a bit off track while you’re still getting to the sea front going down the main road. So places where they can be a little less congested. Yeah, but really, just a more I guess slightly less visual approach to getting around Brighton.
And what was like, Where did this idea start from? I guess so like what made you? Yeah, what was the beginning?
Oh, gosh. Well, many things. So first of all, I did a photography project last year, and I was walking around quite a lot looking back on that, that was a real good walking through, walking around just to get a good idea of ways in which I’d like to try and navigate the city. And then when this project came up I thought wow, I can now apply it and really play on it and think about how I might guide a group of people and use the landmarks I know such as the clock tower, boots, the town hall as ways to get as far as ways I might’ve gotten to the seafront.
I. Yes. So I’ve known I’ve kind of done walks through the city I guess around so like going around coming through like the bottom of um, I don’t know how to describe it. The Pavillion coming around that way.
So yeah, I’ve done I’ve done ways and I think that’s that’s also a good way as well as again, it’s not gonna be a little less busy until you get to the end, which are all Crossroads or big crossings. Like because this way is not so bad it’s a bit of a quiet that’s a bit of gradual build gradual quietening down and gradually building up again in terms of soundscape and business.
And then also so I guess maybe describing like the process that you’ve been through, so like the one on ones and the movement workshops.
So basically the the one on ones is, I was really, for me, it’s about all the visually impaired people that live here, and their experiences, how long they’ve been here, how it contrasts everywhere else I’ve lived before, in which case luckily, most people I can think of have all got a place to kind of contrast it with all. One of the participants has been in and out of the city to other places and they were able to comment on what they feel could be better for them and for other visually impaired people and what were the types of things that came up in that?
Just just in terms of a tactile paving, the lines on the road, more kind of clearer signage for visually impaired people that actually brings out to stand out.
So there is signage there, but it’s probably not and I know in areas it’s it’s not as pronounced and like it could be clearer, yeah, they’re, they’re a little there’s this new, probably a new idea of points of crossing, they have them in the lanes and have them on the streets as well. And I feel that indentation is really important to for that to be kept up things like that came up having ballards in appropriate places.
Is also good if you’re going to have a ballard have a billard that is visible. So preferably black not silver, which is often the color of the floor. These kind of things like railings if you’re having them then make sure they’ve been put in a spot that’s appropriate.
Yeah. So actually on the railings thing what you were speaking to me about earlier. I think that’s a really interesting point about this. Railings that are really confusing.
Yeah, and if you’ve got like, particularly for even for myself and those who are totally blind if a railing is there for purpose, it should be it shouldn’t be half done. It should be all done. Yeah. It’s like half doing the roads. Yeah. It’s kind of it’s not it’s not advisable to do that. So it’s not normal, but that’s happened so maybe someplaces it is. But it’s not some advice. I wouldn’t say that as a good idea. So I think just to be all or nothing with I think with the visually impaired signage.
And tactile paving and drop curves. I think I think more more and more as opposed to more needs there needs to be more of it as opposed to less of it because no matter where people live in Brighton, most of them do have to come into town.
Yeah, yeah, so and also that needs to be carried on out throughout the whole city aswell, really important its not just gravitating to centre of town but throughout so its all kept inline and up to date is important. That came up quite strongly from that participant who has been here for two years, since they’ve been living somewhere else. And again, one of the other participants who’s lived here for quite a while also agreed with that as well. A bit more clarification would be very useful. Yeah, so that was one thing that was spoke about in the one that ones and then like, how else did they I guess inform the tour or lead into the tour?
All those conversations actually came up in the workshop as well in the prediscussion in the workshop and then in the tour
personally, so for the lights that we’ve used or sounded lights, but they are, they are the cone spins underneath.
For most of them, I might have to rethink actually Okay, one of the crossing points, which I think is the one by the albion. I’m not sure. How if I might choose a different point
And why would you do that? Just because that the one of the ones, I can’t remember but by the sea? was the one of the things are missing, a cone, I can’t remember which one it was. There was a cone missing. And one of them was a bit broken.
So I’m not sure. I can’t remember what point it was, not sure if it was around there. Am but I might, I’m not sure.
Either way I might do is use, there is a crossing right of the side of the Albion, which faces to sea on the left. Actually, theres only two roads to cross which is easier than crossing four almost five roads. Yeah, so then you’re still getting the pier, the sealife center, which should be on the right. So, yeah.
And then I guess, maybe, because you just mentioned it but the movement workshop, just for like, to get to maybe talk about that a little bit.
The movement workshop, for me, it was about really getting people used to moving around navigating the space, if thinking of ways they might how they might deal with uneven paving, through playing with balance, spatial awareness, and just taking the time to really listen. What feels, can they sense where they are? Yeah, that was that that the whole the idea of that workshop, hopefully from that workshop people will feel more confident in navigating space, feeling the floor being in touch with the floor, especially for those who don’t use canes. Because some of the people, I’m not sure I don’t, I’m not sure everyone that came to the workshop used a cane. And particularly, it’s very important for those who don’t use a cane. Yeah. To really be aware, to sense where they are. Yeah, to just take their time when moving around. Yeah. And also, the idea is to help with posture awareness as well, because presumably, people have come to have a problem with posture, depending on how I mean if their heads down looking at the floor or straight ahead. And also to relax the arm, which uses the cane if they’re a cane user, not to hold tension in that because there’s a chance of muscle tension, which can happen if you’re tensed up all the time. So, yeah, that was, that’s what we explored in the workshop. And hopefully, that all feeds in nicely to the actual tour.
Yeah, it also sounds like it was like a really great experience, because it’s this really creative, fun environment, but like what you’re speaking to now is like, there were principles behind it that can be taken away, and implemented. Yeah. And this is the first time you ran a workshop like this or do you do that as part of your practice?
It’s I’ve, I’ve done I’ve kind of fed in the same ideas in other workshops I’ve done as well. But I actually actually use similar things in regardless of if the people in the workshop are visually impaired or not.
Because often people are so used to visualizing, seeing everything that is good for people to play with, to use their mind’s eye and to use other senses, especially with the leading and following exercise, which is what I did in the workshop as well, to be able to explore level changes, which happens on the foot often, in Brighton it’s very common. uphill and downhill. So yeah, I’ve played, we’ve played with that as well. Yeah, so I do use that. So yeah, I generally use some of these exercises most of the time. Yeah.
And then, yeah, well, it sounds fantastic. And then. So did you get much feedback? Because I know that like you portioned some of the day to having discussions as well.
What type of feedback was it that came up.
They all, all the participants found it really interesting. They were really happy to meet other visually impaired people, because they hadn’t all done that before. So particularly for the participant who had just moved back after being away two years, they, they were really glad to have this experience to be a part of something which is very new for them, and to share and hear the about the tour and to experience it. So they were hopeful. And they were like, well, I really hope after this workshop, that maybe some of this information will get to the right people. And the changes that we spoke about today can be implemented and I was like Oh, that’d be amazing. Yeah. So that was one of the things and overall, people just really enjoy the chance to move and explore
Were any of the participants. Like, obviously, movement makes up a lot of your practice. But were any of these participants, movement practitioners, or was it just visually impaired people of the community? Was there like a range of experience?
They were all visually impaired people of the community although one of the one of the participants is from Bristol and has actually had actually done some stuff before with dancers from touchdown dance company.
So that was really they were actually really confident when it came to the following and leading, where they trusted their guides and when they were guiding they were moving up to speeding. And walking and moving at a faster pace they were confident with that with and I was like Oh, gosh. Yeah, it was. That was that was really nice. Yeah.
And then, do you feel like so you were just speaking about how these people were looking forward to the, like, the prospect of these things being brought to someone and someone hearing them or whatever? Do you feel like there is like someone who listens in that way? Or like if there’s a body or an organisation?
Well, actually. I mean, this all this stuff is is first I mean, it’s Yeah, I mean, organizations can listen, vision, vision organisations can listen, but it all comes down to the council at the end of the day so there the people that need to be listening.
As always, in anywhere and even where I am from, where there’s a load of you know, there’s a lot of visually disabled people. Yeah. All comes down from the community to the council. Even though say an organization out there or National Institute of the blind RNIB can say we need this but this still comes down to the council. And doing so, yeah, so it’s the Council.
Yeah. So we’ll send this to the council Yeah, great, because, um, yeah, I don’t know. I it’s I guess. I feel like around the country, depending on it’s depends on organizations, how many organizations there are, how many visually impaired people there are, how vocal they are, what you do see is the difference in areas of cities where there are very though out things. It’s very interesting how how, yeah, I know there are there are a lot of visually impaired people here in Brighton. But I also, I also wonder if a lot of people, I’m not sure if this is right. If majority people here and Brighton, are living with someone who is sighted. And so therefore that changes everything, if you live alone as a visual person, there’s a lot more externally, for me, that needs to be in place, in terms of the city being built up and geared up for you. An example of that would be Birmingham, Manchester, London, where there cities are very built up Nottingham even, I would say, yeah, the constant upkeep of markings. indentation. Yeah. It’s pretty thorough throughout. Yeah.
Yeah. So like an implementation, and then a maintenance. Those are the like, yeah, important things.
Yeah. I just wonder, yeah. Because like, it is different when you do, If you’re independent, and you go out on your own a lot, then yeah, it does make a difference to how, how confident you feel about getting around? Yeah.
And is there spaces where visually impaired people say in Brighton can like, come together and meet or
as far as I’m aware, there is an organization that have various meet various kind of events where they meet, but again, there’s, there’s one organization to deal with 20 – 30. And there’s another one, which I don’t know about the age bracket , but it just so happens that that the people that attend those events are can be older. Yeah, there is there I haven’t been to any of the social stuff. Again, the social stuff, generally is attended by older people. So yeah, there’s room for a mid. Yeah. Kind of 30s something.
And up, yeah, that needs to kind of, yeah, it happens everywhere it happens in I mean, in London, there were many groups, because often it was the case of there was, you know, a group for people up to 20, then Visually impaired people 20 – 30 but nothing above that. So people will have to form their own kind of social thing. So yeah, there’s room for that in Brighton here because that definitely happens. I think I think tennis is probably the thing where that attracts a range of ages. Well, I don’t know about the other activities. I don’t know. I don’t know I haven’t been on any of them to know the details.
Yeah, I mean that they’re open that well, they’re open now. So yeah, it’d be interesting to see but yeah, so there’s definitely a social somewhere for more another social thing to say and have space for.
And then so like how did you get participants for the workshop and like, what kind of channels I guess would you like reach out on or even like another visually impaired person if they were like looking for what would be the resources to meet other people
To meet other people, they will probably have to speak to the Association of visually impaired people Sussex. And then as another one Blushington court or something or House for people from age 20 – 30. And so those are the two organizations that I knew of. As a matter of fact, I actually spoke to the visually impaired officer for the Brighton area to get the word out there.
Because they can actually get in touch with everybody. They know. And so that’s how, that’s how I got my word out about the workshop.
So yeah, thankfully to be honest, the rehabilitation officer for this area, they’ve been amazing. Before I’m not sure where things were, where, where if the organization knew or they had learned, because so I’m really glad to know, now that it’s out there now. And yeah, it’s just a case of laying see what comes because now I was in touch and connected and yeah. So I’m hoping that some we have a couple more people will come forward. Now.
Do you imagine this is like the beginning of like, some more sort of work on this side of things? Or? What’s your ideas around that right now?
After? I mean? Yeah, I’m not sure. Maybe some more workshops, if people are interested in those. Yeah. Particularly, the movement workshops, I’ll be very happy to do more that for, for the visually impaired people, maybe invite other artists that do similar stuff. To come some of my teachers from London to come down to do so. And I will be really excited to do something like that. So that’s kind of what I’ll be hoping. Yeah. And also, hopefully, on the social side, create, a mid, a mid group, I guess. For people to meet other visually impaired people.
Because I know that there are, there are many groups of people on socials in Brighton. I know that. So but I do feel it’s nice as, as visually impaired people it’s nice to, to occasionally or at least once a month or twice a month to meet up with other people that are visually impaired like yourself. Even if it’s just to go for a Sunday roast together. Or to go to London together to go on an adventure. Yeah.And then just like when you moved to Brighton, how did you like first experience? Sorry this is kind of changing the subject, but I’m thinking about it? Like did you know Brighton much before? Or like, what were your like, first if someone was to move to Brighton what would you advise them to be their like first protocol as like a visually impaired person or ya like, access stuff? Or what would be helpful okay, looking back on it now. So first of all, the first thing is, is to move here, you have to stay here for about a week to find somewhere to live if not longer. A week should be fine. And also, to be aware of estate agents that might seem a bit more open and friendly to people that are the visually impaired because some don’t have a clue and just like want your money. Yeah. Bear that in mind.
And also to find out about, for me, I probably would have looked more closely at the visually impaired organizations to see what they’re doing and how much say they actually have in the city. How things are implemented, and how active the visually impaired community is here. That’s important. And yeah, because I didn’t know, I was coming to Brighton as a tourist and as an artist performing so yes
it was a huge a big move I wasn’t I was living in supported accommodation in London so I was in a very secure place area, however when I moved out the whole the whole thing has changed things change dramatically and are not what they were so but yeah I think just research and like having exploring all the different areas it’s probably good to stay if you can stay somewhere Central and safe and somewhere else to view the contrast. if you’re gonna spend money on renting a place to do it also look at the different House share options and how they’re charging.
Yeah, those those are the things what else? Pretty much it… personal decisions where is how much of your stuff medically?How much of your medical stuff do you want to move / keep. For me, I kept I chose to keep my hospital in London my doctor stuff here but yeah, that’s just a personal choiceI chose London because it’s one of the places of expertise I will stick with that so yeah, that’s it, that’s really helpful. I mean, it’s like a really great little starter checklist. Yeah, I think there are two more things I want to ask you the first one I should have asked it’s just like maybe speak a little bit about your practice like outside of this tour?
So I am cabaret, dance performance artist, so I am creating working on stuff for performing often through inspired by music and movement and dance attending dance workshops also just walking on the seafront things like that but yeah that’s yeah that all feeds in just navigating the streets to the sea and taking in, having moments of where stillness not doing much but taking it all in and then applying it, thinking how I might apply that to movement and so I’m also trying at the moment to figure out how I can best audio describe describe my cabaret, yeah, so that’s a constant journey I want my performances to be accessible to everyone. So that’s an ongoing journey, ongoing discovery I guess my backgrounds because I went through my college years. So basically started training in performing arts When I was about 16 years old and the RNCB at Hereford basically, I focused on dance and music. And I do theatre for children as a kind of drama, but drama has never been my thing. So, yeah, we also use we also use like, props. And so in terms of my cabarets I always use some kind of, some sheets or some shiny material?
Just to add something substance even if it’s just to bring a flow to the piece, yeah. Yeah. Yes. Even likemy cane using it as a as a prop and is you cabaret mostly solo work.
Yeah .Yes. It is. However, at the end of March, I will, basically, as part of an event called transpose, which is sort of a queerness and transness. I will be kind of, I guess, creating, choreographing I am! so a piece which I had in my head where we were playing with picture frames on the small to large scale I’m working with two other amazing artists, one from Liverpool. And an artist from London. And we’re gonna be Yeah, it’s gonna be I’m really excited to do that at the Barbican.
Oh, yeah, that sounds amazing.
So yeah, it’s just nice to be I don’t often I mean, Generally because being part of groups like I mean, companies like the big the big Theatre Company, 30 people large! so working alone I quite enjoy, but to work with two other people who are very easy to work with. And yeah, so I’m super excited about that. Again, yeah, that’ll be we’ll be using props, chairs and frames. And yeah, yeah, it sounds really interesting. Sounds like maybe the props offer like context to the work as well?
Yeah, yeah, I mean, so the the idea of frames is from a song.I thought it would be cool to have big picture frame, like Yeah, and to play with that and so like yeah, play with being in and outside of the picture. What’s that what that’s like to be seen not to see to be in fame out of fame. Yeah.
And then last thing, I’m just wondering, like, what’s next? Yeah, I guess you kind of answered it. Yeah.
That’s that is actually no what’s next is when I’ll be on Judge panels. I’ve always kind of been scared of and said, Oh, gosh, oh, not enough for this position. I have been invited to a disability talent show. As part of the organization disabled queer and here is a disabled LGBT organization, that supports LGBT disabled people and their talent, and they’re putting it on. So we’re putting on a talent show to celebrate LGBT talent, talent. And yeah, I’m one of the judges along with the host of the night which should be sugarcube Miss sugarcube.
There’s going to be some amazing cabaret performers who I’ve known for many years Miss Moore who’s a wonderful cabaret performer as well I’ve visited their shows, seen their shows yeah amazing and then we also have guests from from Cardiff as well as gonna be also hosting live so it’s gonna be an amazing that’s on the ninth of March that’s just before the tour for this yes yeah. Busy, yeah see. Yeah, that’s that’s that yeah I’m also involved in a photo shoot in a photo shoot at the gosh can’t think of the name of it now, but its happening beyond the tour and beyond the talent show celebrating beauty with some of the amazing drag cabaret performers in London.
I guess is there any like patflorms to see what you’re doing? What do you use and social channels?
Yes, you can follow me @ebonyrosedarkon Facebook, or @ebonyrosedark on Instagram. And then if there’s anything else you feel like you want to say.
I would just want I hope you enjoy listening to this podcast and be it sitting in a place and just sitting at home listening to it. Or taking yourself on the actual tour from the clock tower all the way to the seafront and also if you want to deviate so you know. Yeah. So yeah. Yeah. Enjoy, enjoy that. Enjoy the tour from a sensorial point of view thank you so much.
And that’s it! I hope you have enjoyed this podcast and don’t forget to keep up with everything that Sussex Dance Network are doing, through our website and social media channels! Thanks for listening.