Here at Bright Shadow we are extremely lucky to have the opportunity to work with professional artists who are all passionate about what they do.
Over the next few months we’d like to tell you a bit more about them and showcase the incredible work they are doing to support those living with dementia and their loved ones.
Laura started her professional career as an actor. After graduating from drama school and finding herself doing more physical theatre she landed a prime role in the National Theatre’s acclaimed production of Warhorse, as the back legs of Joey! This was her first foray into puppetry after being trained by the world-class Handspring Theatre company. After this exciting experience, Laura and a team of WarHorse puppeteers went on to devise a new piece for the NT in The Shed– an immersive show featuring giant inflatable elephant puppets!
Since then Laura has worked as a movement and puppetry director for some of the most memorable productions including; The 2012 Olympic Opening Ceremony ( Associate Movement Director), Don Quixote, RSC (Puppetry Director), The Boy in the Dress, RSC ( Puppetry Director),
A Monster Calls, Bristol Old Vic & The Old Vic ( Puppetry Director) and many more…
Laura started to diversify her work teaching workshops as well as staging productions and from there discovered a real feeling for working with people of all ages.
“It’s always a really lovely way to connect with people, to share some stories and to share a bit of the devising process- to really come together in a way you rarely get to do, quite so closely, with an audience”
Clare (our CEO) had been following her work for some time, and it wasn’t long before she was part of the Bright Shadow family of talented artists and performers.
Laura has devised a wonderful block of sessions for us. A Journey through Puppetry is designed to create a space for the imagination to spark and for participants to think about the places they’ve been and (maybe places they’d like to go)
From Stage to Zoom
Our artists often find working with our participants very engaging and rewarding. Laura had this to say after a recent session….
I just love the can-do dive-in attitude, so wonderful and light and a treat to be a part of
But how difficult is it to translate such a physical art form to an online environment? As the picture below shows, Laura has managed to inspire and encourage the group to make their own puppets, even using inanimate objects as a starting point!
Back to the future?
In this uncertain time artists are finding that plans for shows and performances either have to be shelved or postponed, but as things start to open back up again it means that at least outdoor shows may go ahead. Laura was due to direct a show in at the open air theatre at Regent’s Park last summer and hopes that this will be happening this year, mainly because she’s got a dragon puppet the size of a warehouse and no show to put him in!
We’re so happy that for now, we’ve got Laura all to ourselves…
We have spaces in all our Zest Communities sessions as well as running 1-1 sessions and our Families Reunited program which connects loved ones unable to see each other due to care homes visiting restrictions.