Voice International and Giving Voice
The primary aim of Voice International is to restore the vital role of vocal expression and creativity within the performing arts and within community life in Wales. The enterprise consolidates and develops a wide range of voice initiatives originated by the Centre for Performance Research (CPR) over the past twenty five years. Through a range of activities, organised at a number of levels, practical and theoretical, for professionals and amateur performers, individuals as well as the community, Voice International will extend opportunities for all to participate in explorations and projects that enhance and underline the significance of the expressive voice in creative life.
A major focus of work to date has been the Giving Voice festival. Giving Voice is an established international event which has the aim of advancing the appreciation and understanding of the voice in performance through practical research and a celebration of its many and varied manifestations throughout time and culture. It brings together those who have an interest in the voice but who will not necessarily meet in the course of their practice: academics and practitioners; performers from a variety of disciplines; teachers of spoken voice and singing teachers; those with an experimental interest and those who favour traditional methodology; those from the world of medical knowledge of the vocal mechanism and those interested in the spiritual dimensions and healing properties of voice work. Giving Voice explores the voice through a series of themed meetings during which there are workshops, lecture demonstrations, discussions and performances and a symposium. Giving Voice attract a wide range of participants from the performing arts but also from voice therapy, laryngology, teaching, linguistics, communication studies etc. as well as the general public.
There have been eleven sessions of Giving Voice since 1990:
• 1990 First explorations – Cardiff, Wales
• 1994 A Geography of the Voice 1 – Cardiff, Wales
• 1995 A Geography of the Voice 2 – Cardiff, Wales
• 1996 An Archaeology of the Voice 1 – Cardiff, Wales
• 1997 An Archaeology of the Voice 2 – Aberystwyth, Wales
• 1999 A Divinity of the Voice – Aberystwyth, Wales
• 2002 The Voice Politic – Aberystwyth & Cardiff, Wales
• 2004 Towards a Philosophy and Psychology of the Voice – Aberystwyth & Cardiff, Wales
• 2006 Myths of the Voice – Aberystwyth, Wales
• 2008 Breath Inspiration Voice – Aberystwyth, Wales
• 2009 Harmonic Accord: Encounters Through Song – Wroclaw, Poland
• 2010 Hearken! Do you Hear An Angel? – Teatro Era, Pontedera, Italy
The Summer Shift
The Summer Shift is an intensive working retreat in beautiful surroundings for those wanting to explore new ways of working and experiment with different processes and approaches to making theatre and performance.
With a compedium of practical workshops and performance laboratories led by some of the most talented and inspiring theatre and performance artists working today, The Summer Shift offers the opportunity to take time out and away from the usual pressures of everyday life to explore ones creative practice amongst like-minded participants from around the world.
The Summer Shift is comprised of workshops, talks, discussions and evening events. Past editions include:
• 1994 Inaugural Summer Retreat – Druidstone Haven, Wales
• 1995 Summer Retreat: Eros and Psyche – Druidstone Haven, Wales
• 1996 Summer Retreat: King Lear Project – Druidstone Haven, Wales
• 1997 Summer Retreat: Landscapes, Bodiescapes, Escapes – Druidstone Haven, Wales
• 1998 Summer School – Aberystwyth, Wales
• 1999 Summer School: Hotel Wales – Aberystwyth, Wales
• 2000 Summer School: Landscape and the Body – Aberystwyth and Preseli Mountains, Wales
• 2001 Summer School: Landscape of the Senses – Aberystwyth, Druidstone Haven and Preseli Mountians, Wales
• 2002 Summer Shift – Aberystwyth, Wales
• 2003 Summer Shift – Aberystwyth, Wales
• 2005 Summer Shift – Aberystwyth, Wales
• 2006 Summer Shift – Aberystwyth, Wales
• 2007 Summer Shift – Aberystwyth, Wales
Points of Contact
This international conference series aims to generate investigation, critical debate and understanding of cross-disciplinary approaches to performance studies through contact and confrontation with other disciplines.
Seven major conferences of this series have been staged and the series will relaunch in 2015.
• 1988 Theatre, Anthropology and Theatre Anthropology
• 1989 Performance Nature and Culture – Devon
• 1990 Performance Politics and Ideology – Lancaster
• 1993 Performance Ritual Shamanism – Cardiff
• 1994 Performance Food and Cookery – Cardiff
• 1996 Performance, Tourism, Identity – Beginning in Aberystwyth and journeying across Wales
• 1998 Performance, Places and Pasts – Beginning in Aberystwyth and journeying across Wales
PastMasters is a series of projects designed by CPR to explore and re-evaluate the work and influence of some of the great reformers of 20th Century theatre. The essence of PastMasters is to bring together practitioners and scholars to exchange views and skills, meeting and working within the context of contemporary theatre – from its roots to all its current diversity.
Past Masters has been a huge success generating extraordinary training opportunities for professionals, a forum for debate between practitioners and scholars and a crucible generating new knowledge within the field of study.
• 1996 Antonin Artaud
• 1997 Etienne Decroux
• 1998 Bertolt Brecht and Sergei Eisenstein
• 1999 Michael Chekhov
• 2000 Beyond Pastmasters: Tadeusz Kantor & Cricot 2
• 2001 Grounded in Europe: Tanztheatre and its Legacy
• 2003 Craig and Appia: Sculptors of the Modern Age
A programme of two-day creative development workshops in theatre, dance, and voice led by world class artists and established UK practitioners, the series offers in-service professional training and creative development opportunities in communities across Wales often under-served by existing provision. Locations have included: Aberystwyth; Harlech; Brecon; Bangor; Milford Haven and Mold.
CPR Productions – Performance Banquets/Installations
• 2005 100 Years in Boxes: As Worlds Fall Apart – Aberystwyth, Wales
• 2007 Everyday Life in the Folds of a Serviette – Chichester, England
• 2008 First Supper at the Foundry – Aberystwyth, Wales
• 2011 Out of the Box: Unfolding Feasts / Allan o’r Blwch: Agor Gwleddoedd – Across Ceredigion, Wales