It’s behind you!

When I moved to France in 2017, I knew my life would shrink in certain ways. But what I didn’t expect was the many ways it has also expanded.

When you live in a big city, you take everything for granted. You have the world on a plate but all you do is pick at the green beans. It’s nice just to know that the world is out there: juicy, moist, fragrant, flavoured and within easy reach. It’s nice to know you live in a city of hundreds of theatres full of plays, musicals, operas, and dance shows. From the classic to the avant-garde. From fringe shows to celebrity-studded shows. From the latest movie to themed nights at the British Film Institute. From immersive experiences to concerts. The world is an oyster ready to slide down your throat. But when you live in the French countryside, you learn to accept that the choices you once had are no longer yours to ignore. You launch, dive or gallop towards anything (and I mean literally anything) that could be considered a cultural night out.

But that’s not what my being part of the Christmas panto was.

It was something I would have never done if I still lived in London. I would have never committed to a six-month schedule of rehearsals and being on stage for two nights. In fact, when I first arrived in France, I attended a rehearsal as a way to meet the local community and I could not fathom ever having the time investment it required. Fast forward five years, I’m in it and I’m having the best time. And when it’s finished, I am bereft. I miss my fellow cast-members and I miss talking in panto language. I know that it’s behind me now (get it?) but I can’t wait to do it again!

Creativity relies on a well of inspiration that needs to be constantly filled, or it dries up. In the absence of art galleries and immersive events, being in last year’s panto saved my creative life. It strengthened friendships and made new ones. It gave me so much more than what I gave it and I can’t wait to do it all over again.

If you live in the Pyrenees Atlantiques, don’t miss out the next 64 Players Christmas Pantomine, which will take place at the end of November at the theatre in Salies de Bearn. You can always message me directly for information and tickets.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *