English, Rose 12 of 13).  National Life Stories: Artists' Lives

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  • Recording date

    2005-12-08, 2006-02-03, 2006-04-11, 2006-05-08, 2006-06-05,

  • Recording locations

    Interviewee's home/studio, London

  • Interviewees

    English, Rose, 1950- (speaker, female)

  • Interviewers

    Dyke, Anna, (speaker, female)

  • Abstract

    Part 12: [1:09:10] For eight years, rented studio in ‘Circus Space’, Hoxton, as artist in residence. [sound dropout 1:10] SV used the adjoining space. Mentions Gary Hume, Paul Daly also had studios there. Describes RE’s and SV’s spaces and working routine; computers. SV’s sketchbooks. Images on storyboard wall in RE’s studio, eg. for ‘Rosita Clavel’; ‘Lost in Music’. Collaborative process with SV from ‘Walks on Water’ onward; more recently on ‘Lost in Music’. Changes to RE and SV’s working practises; mentions ‘Duckie’ club nights. RE returning to interest in vessels, objects with ‘Lost in Music’; correlation between the image and the word; words in songs; collaborations with composers, eg. IH and currently Luke Stoneham. [17:05] Difficulties making work after ‘My Mathematics’ and ‘Tantamount’; not knowing what form ‘Lost in Music’ would take; smaller works; collaborations with IH ‘Standing Room Only’ and ‘The Nature Table’; radio collaboration with David Sawer ‘The Long Time Ago Story’. ‘Standing Room Only’; setting verbatim speech to music; first made ‘The Nature Table’, with rural primary school in Uley; songs made from interviews with the children. ‘Standing Room Only’; from conversations on route master buses about London; at Hoxton Hall; experienced and novice singers; pianist Jenny Sandler. Re’s interest in working with singers. [26:05] Recurring feature of horses in RE’s work; childhood experience of pilgrimage to village of El Rocio in southern Spain. ‘My Mathematics’ - produced by Michael Morris - developed into ‘Rosita Clavel - A Horse Opera’, which was to be staged in Suffolk in 1997; lack of funding meant it didn’t go ahead; pursued it with another producer Adrian Evans; then sought commercial sponsors. Technically-demanding show, eg. choir of Bulgarian singers; small orchestral ensemble; seven horses and riders. Mentions show with 1000 horses at Windsor horse show. ‘Rosita Clavel’ so complex that its stage space has been left open. Approached GSC’s Cheval Theatre; and Madeleine Lloyd Webber of Really Useful Company. Story of meeting with GSC, formerly of Cirque du Soleil, in Las Vegas; positive experience, but no funding. Mentions friend Daniel Zippi. Themes of ‘Rosita Clavel’. [41:53] Other work: 1999, played Prospero in adaptation of ‘The Tempest’ by Nick Philippou; songs by Laurie Anderson; Kate Alderton; enjoyed speaking the text, the role. Collaborations with choreographer MH; played The Figment in ‘Double Wedding’; worked as dramaturge on MH’s work eg. ‘Silent Rhythms’. ‘Lost in Music’; MH inviting RE on trip to China. Quotes herself on collaborating. Being an outside eye on MH’s work. Trip to China with MH; meeting acrobatic troupe; development of ‘Lost in Music’. Choreography in RE’s shows; working with MH. [53:44] RE’s friendships tend to be connected with work, collaborators. Long term friendships: TL and CD from schooldays; TWM; SV; artist/director Julia Bardsley, Angela Clerkin, Suzy King; Richard Jones; IH; MH and his partner Mr Pearl; GB. Curation of ‘Force Fields’ exhibition; individual works such as Takis, Agnes Dean, Vantongerloo, Len Lye. Interest in different art forms; develops deep passions at particular times; loves Richard Wilson’s work and Bow Gamelan collaboration. Seeking out Islamic glass; lace; Elizabethan gloves; concrete poet Dom Sylvester Houedard. RE ‘makes shows’, rather than things. No longer plans work in the long term; ‘Lost in Music’ hopefully will be staged in 2008; working with producer Jeremy Goldstein of London Artist Projects; and plan ‘Rosita Clavel’ for 2012. Can imagine a time when doesn’t want to make shows anymore; may make work in another form. Reflects on motivation for making work. [1:09:10]

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