Damp leaves stirring in the gutters. A car door slamming. A woman waiting in the shadow of a lamppost. A strand of hair catches in her mouth and she chokes a little. Then she turns and her eyes lock with yours.
Interweaving lyric storytelling, character and live foley, Brisk Wind is a visceral musing on nature and stupidity and the wild constancy of the passing of time. This is a show for women who don’t give a f**k,for people who like jazz, for cynics and romantics, for smokers and non-smokers and people who like biscuits.
Pheobe Mason speaks to Jonty about what you could expect from the show.
How did the show originate?
The show began as a five minute devised monologue while I was at clown school (John Bolton Theatre School, Melbourne). The provocation for that week's devised piece was 'a building block of your life which has a story that needs to be told'. The building block I chose was the year I went to counselling for my depression. We did an hour of free writing, and I came out with this intensely evocative prose about the wind in the gutters and the rain on the hood of the car and other noir-y tropes. It made me feel like I was in a Raymond Chandler which was hilarious and a little inappropriate, but also very fun to write and play, so I sashayed down the gritty path with a fake cigarette in my hand and a few months later it turned into a show.
What can we expect from the show?
You can expect THE UNEXPECTED. No, but kind of. Expect a mixture of dense poetry and dense stupidity, of reality and surreality, of music and silence. Expect to be able to control the story and expect that control to disappear. Expect to make eye contact with me, but you don't have to expect me to make you do anything embarrassing, that won't happen.
Based on the title I'm assuming that Cornwall Park may feature?
Yes! It's lovely doing the show in Auckland where that reference rings bells for people. I've spent a lot of time (good times and sad times) in Cornwall Park as a Mt-Eden-ite, so it's a really important place for me. The show begins with you, the audience, in a car parked in Cornwall Park, and then zooms out into an other-dimension version of the world before dropping you back down on the earth.
What has been the most difficult part of the production?
I've made the show almost totally on my own. think I needed to do this show on my own for a number of reasons, but I don't think I'll make a show this way again! It is quite lonely, and it can be hard to see the fun for the trees. People are fun to hang out with, and when you track down the right collaborators, it's a dream. Also money, but what's new.
What reaction are you hoping the show gets?
I hope people are swept away for 50 minutes. I hope people feel a touch of magic, I hope people laugh, I hope people are reflective afterwards.