Monday, 5 June 2017

Dramaturgy Off: Craig Quartermaine @ Edfringe 2017


Brendon Burns and Craig Quartermaine in:

RACE OFF

18:45 (19:45)

2-28 August (not 17)

From the directors of So I Suppose This is Offensive Now. No-filter white Aussie Burns and charming ball of rage Quartermaine are the first double act of their kind in history... that's right: in history... ever. Relax.




What was the inspiration for this performance?
Over the last year I have been going through an emotionally draining and steep learning curve of combining my emerging comedy career with my established Journalism career. Australia is a country in complete denial of its historical treatment of Aboriginal Australians and pretty much every race that followed the British first fleets. Now I’ve found a platform that won’t be edited by the exact establishment I’m criticising. Stand up is the ultimate freedom, as long as it’s funny.


Is performance still a good space for the public discussion of ideas? 
For me it’s the only space that’s still a legitimate option to discuss ideas or at the very least provoke discussions of ideas. There is far too much bureaucracy holding back important discussions and voices. Performance can inform and create debate - at least it can still try.  
 
How did you become interested in making performance?
I became frustrated with the editorial process of my Journalism. I found that too much control was being given to people who had not witnessed what I was reporting on and were simply crafting my work to make it more palatable or poetic regardless of the actual content.


Is there any particular approach to the making of the show?
Unfiltered banter of an unwilling double act. My co-star and I shouldn’t have ever crossed paths and we have had a very difficult journey on covering Race relations in Australia. But all that has contributed to the finished product and the key to that approach has been brutally honest with trial and error.


Does the show fit with your usual productions?
I am very much a low-fi comedian; for me stand up involves a stage and a mic a light if you’re feeling indulgent. This production has lighting cues, music and way more production than I would have ever conceived so I’m a long way from my comfort zone.


What do you hope that the audience will experience?
Tension releasing laughs! I’ve found while I am from a very different place than people in UK audiences, my comedy and the show has relatable situations but a unique and generally unheard perspective. I hope people find something they can relate to but if not then they at entertained enough to keep listening anyway.


What strategies did you consider towards shaping this audience experience?
Well without giving too much away, a lot of study of crowd reactions and general human behaviour has gone into the narrative of this show so anything that provokes has been considered for this show.





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