In a preposterous circus sideshow booth two rivalrous clowns in spectacular costumes compete to make ever more extravagant balloon creations, doomed to be gnashed to pieces by psychotic puppets. This is classic street theatre, with funny and provocative vignettes exploring loss, cycles of life and death – the big and little things we need to let go of in order to live more fully. Madam Balwn subverts the archetype of the jolly balloon-animal clown, using that playfulness to address complex themes, see-sawing between conflict and co-operation, and shining a light on the interplay between these urges.
Co-director Emily received a bursary from Articulture and XTrax to promote Madam Balwn at Greenwich and Docklands International Festival in June 2015. On Friday October 23rd we shared the work in progress, directed by Rachel Porter, at Freshly Scratched at London’s BAC. Here is the film: