A Few Little Drops is part of a portfolio of work in which Hewison has had a significant creative role in large-scale community arts practice. Other prominent examples include:
• The Preston Passion (April 2012). Commissioned by the Preston Guild/BBC Television, and screened live as the Good Friday Broadcast, BBC1. The programme was the winner of the ‘Live Broadcast of the Year’ (Royal Television Society awards, 2012).
• The Land of Giants (Titanic Slipway, Belfast, June 2012). A multi-disciplinary community-arts event celebrating Northern Irish history. Funders included The National lottery, Cultural Olympiad, and Arts Council Northern Ireland.
A Few Little Drops was an unprecedented international interdisciplinary arts project based in Kuwait and Qatar, and jointly lead by Hewison, and Paul Davies, Artistic Director of Volcano Theatre Company, Wales. It was co-funded by The British Council, Arts Council England, and Arts Council Wales. The project brought leading UK practitioners in contemporary physical-theatre to work with mixed-gender participants from across the Gulf region. This resulted in two, week-long, physical-theatre residencies, exploring Western physical theatre practices within the thematic context of regional myths and cultural narratives around the subject of water. Each residency culminated in original performance events in the host cities of Doha and Kuwait City. As a scholar-artist, Hewison’s primary research motive was to respond to Patrice Pavis’s contention that truly interdisciplinary theatrical exchanges are only conceived through daily sharing of embodied practices (1996). Specific research questions included:
• How might intensive studio-based practices serve as a model of intercultural exchange and development?
• What is the affective nature of cultural exchange in contexts requiring cultural ‘leadership’?
This project, together with other large-scale city-based projects (Belfast and Preston), contextualises Hewison’s interests in community arts-participation as a locus for exploring interdisciplinarity and the dual impact of and on professional artists of such community engagement and leadership.
Evidence Portfolio includes:
• DVD of Qatar performance output
• Complimentary reflective writing
• Participant reviews
• Press cuttings – Kuwait and Qatar
• A Few Little Drops (contextual essay)
• Link to The Preston Passion: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p00q06xx/clips
• Link to The Land of Giants: http://www.landofgiants.info