We raved about the Exeter Phoenix in our Alternative Freshers’ Guide, and Landscape II, a new, compelling solo work by Melanie Wilson, will be shown there on Tuesday 8th October. Telling the story of three women separated by a hundred years, the show distils live performance and live sound, together with a poetic use of film and projection, to create a portrait of three minds rooted together by a landscape. The show has particular resonance with Devon as it is the Devon landscape that features in the story and uses archive material from rural photographers such as James Ravilious.
The production, presented by Fuel Theatre and Melanie Wilson, follows a conversation across time. A retired lighthouse keeper in her 60s, Beatrice, decides to undertake a period of solitude and reflection inspired by the solitary and contemplative life that is detailed in the diaries and journals of her great, great grandmother Vivien. Both of their letters, diaries, drawings and photographs expose a series of threatening episodes and unsettling occurrences; with themes ranging from solitude, foreign lands, female inheritance and the sensations of sound and silence. As the landscape presses in on them, they draw upon the threads that connect them to survive.
Melanie Wilson is a London based performer, writer and sound artist. Her work often involves performances, installations and sound walks that centre upon the use of sound as a distinct, immersive agency. Named as “one of the brightest lights of experimental theatre” by Music OMH and described as being “a genuinely disarming performer… [with] the most unsettling and intense presence” by The Guardian, Wilson has written the sound, the text and performs in the show.