"at first you feel a winding pain... you get used to it, then you develop a liking to it..."
The Happiness Project explores our need for non sexual physical contact in our highly digital era.
It features scenes of graphic reality TV binge watching, Whitney Houston and spooning.
We're not sure if any of it will make you happy but it’s worth a try.
The Happiness Project is performed by a diverse and inclusive cast and places queer, working class and disabled peoples experiences centre stage.
After researching physical contact we discovered that the majority of people aged 16-30 yrs only experience physical contact when they are having sex.
No platonic hand holding
No cuddling up to your pals whilst watching tv.
During research and development for The Happiness Project we explored the mental and physical effects regular digital connection has on a person.
We spoke about social media, porn, online dating (with a focus on disabled peoples experiences) and Sophocles. We looked at Juan Mann's Free Hugs campaign and the impact it had on both him and the people he hugged.
During this research period we began to speak about how the majority of our physical contact was during sex.
We found this incredibly interesting and so decided it should become the focus of a new play.
The Happiness Project tells the stories of five people in their own words and is interwoven with movement based around physical contact including awkwardness, need and violence.
Each performer has a very different take on physical contact which has allowed us to create a piece that engages a wide demographic. It features spoken word, strong choral work and the opportunity for audiences to interact digitally.
Feedback from audience, industry and press include:
“it achieves a stylish lightness of touch that often eludes shows on this subject; and reminds us that in surviving times of stress and change, a clear focus on the simple joys of life, and on sharing them with others, can be very useful indeed.”
Joyce McMillan, The Scotsman
“humorous and funny, sensitive and affectionate, a collage of scenes and lives that conveys a strong but loving message, and ends with a moment of utter hope.”
All Edinburgh Theatre
"informed, compassionate, bold and fearless."
"thanks for Creative Electrics existence and bravo to everyone who made The Happiness Project such a wonderful thing.
I was really moved by it at the showcase"
Morag Deyes, Artistic Director, Dance Base
"a beautifully gentle triumph"
Caroline Donald, Edinburgh International Festival.
"I just wanted to say how much the happiness project touched my soul. I’m so glad I had attended the workshop before watching the show as well. I’ve learned so much from the energy you gave us in the workspace and feels sooo inspired by what you put on stage!”
Creative Electric chose to stage The Happiness Project as part of Summerhall’s Army at the Fringe programme during EdFringe 2019. We recognise that this may seem like an unusual choice for the company.
We wanted to ensure that queer and disabled voices would be heard in a space they would not traditionally be heard in.
We provided free tickets to anyone who identified as LGBTQ+, disabled or working class and had a non uniformed friendly face available to meet audiences on arrival at the Army Reserve Centre.
We also worked with the Army to host equality and diversity training for senior officers and ensured that the venue made changes to their everyday practice to make them more inclusive including gender neutral toilets.
The Happiness Project was originally performed at The Biscuit Factory, Edinburgh and for National Theatre of Scotland Exchange 18 at Eden Court, Inverness.
It was programmed as part of ID.Y Fest at Dance Base in October 2018 and as part of The Festival of Rest and Resistance at Battersea Arts Centre in March 2019.
The show has been short listed for The Sit Up Award and Creative Edinburgh’s Creativity Award.
The Church of Broccoli celebrates love in all its forms. We’ve married couples in a laundrette, groups at festivals, a man to his dog and an awesome lady celebrating her single self!
"Creative Electric embody a creative approach which is enjoyable, accessible, topical and wildly creative – demonstrating that innovative theatre is alive and well in Edinburgh outside of August. After LeithLate, [their] Broccoli Weddings were on everyone's lips.”
Claire Stewart, Creative Edinburgh
The Church of Broccoli has featured at Leith Late, The List Party, Dance Base, Pride, the Grassmarket Wedding Fair and headlined the cabaret tent at Kelburn Garden Party.
For larger parties The Church of Broccoli is accompanied by their wedding band- Broccoli Spears and the Florette Quartet.
Leith is where the heart is was commissioned by Hidden Door as an outreach project to connect members of the Leith Community to the festival.
Over four weeks Creative Electric visited community groups to facilitate creative writing, storytelling and reminiscence workshops.
Leith Dockers Club
The Hindu Mandir and Cultural Centre
Leith Community Centre
Janice Parker Projects
Stories were collected and developed into a performative tea party that was performed in the colonnades of Leith Theatre.
Creative Electric were delighted to be asked to direct and perform two shorts for Theatre Uncut at the Traverse Theatre during the Fringe 2018
Every year since 2011 Theatre Uncut have commissioned leading and emerging playwrights to create short plays that tackle political and social issues. We then release these plays, rights free, for anyone to perform anywhere, creating theatrical mass action events that engage people all over the world with the issues at the heart of the plays. so far over 6,000 people in 26 countries across 4 continents have been part of Theatre Uncut.
Creative Electric performed Nobody by Vivienne Franzmann and Safe by Neillah Arbonne. Both plays are part of Women on Power, Theatre Uncut’s 2018 season of work.
Shoplifter<>Shapeshifter is a new project supported by the City of Edinburgh Council and Edinburgh Military Tattoo.
“When I was 14 I ran a shoplifting business.
It started because I desperately wanted blue nail polish from Miss Selfridge but I had no money and knew that nail polishes were treats for birthdays or Christmas.
I wanted what the popular kids had. But my Mum had no means to give it to me, we were a single parent family and lived on her disability benefits. And I was impatient.
So I started to shoplift.
Nail polishes turned to Kangol hats from Jenners which turned into a profitable wee business.
It wasn't about the thrill of shoplifting; it was about looking good and fitting in.
Over 20 years on and I'm no longer a small- time career criminal but I am acutely aware of the pressures on young people to look, dress and act a certain way.”
Shoplifter<>Shapeshifter was performed at the Edinburgh International Children’s Festival and at the Merchant City Festival.
It is available for bookings throughout 2019/20
Desperation Bingo merges verbatim theatre with our favourite seaside game – bingo!
However, we’re playing for high stakes. We’re playing for the last 69p in Heather's account. We’re playing for the cost of her public liability insurance. We’re playing for the story of when she used to steal birthday cakes from work which would feed her and her flatmate for a week. We’re playing for Creative Scotland funding, 20p vodka at the Jaffacake in 1999, we’re playing to stop Heather’s Mum having her disability benefits cut.
It’s just for fun. But it might just change your life.
Desperation Bingo was performed at the Biscuit Factory during Fringe 2017 and was winner of the Fringe Zeitgeist Award.
The Fruitmarket Gallery invited the company to perform Desperation Bingo on ‘The Temple of Jackie’ during Jacqueline Donachie’s exhibition. The cast also worked Donachie’s infamous advice bar.
YOU ARE HERE: Kickout hole – A depression in the pinball table that the ball can fall into. This is usually just large enough for the ball to fit into it. After gaining some points, and/or adjusting the game state, the ball is kicked back into play in a predictable direction and speed.
YOU HAVE WON: 2205 Pills* plus 1 Free Life Game
*Pills must be taken over the course of one year by one player.
An interactive, durational performance created by Heather Marshall & Rosalind McAndrew and informed and performed by you.
Sinking Horses featured 3 40 minute performances throughout each nine hour durational episode. These were created using extracts of Heather’s diary that detailed her experiences of anxiety, depression and pre-menstrual dysphoria.
Sinking Horses was supported by the Tom McGrath Trust, Leith Links Community Council and the City of Edinburgh Council's Performing Arts Fund.
It was performed over five days at Leith Theatre as part of Hidden Door Festival and over two days at Leith Police Box as part of the Scottish Mental Health Arts Festival.
I am male.
I am masculine.
I am independent.
I am non emotional.
I am aggressive.
I am tough-skinned.
I am competitive.
I am strong, self confident and rebellious.
I am sexually aggressive.
I am male. I am masculine.
Fragility was created by eight young men as a way to explore and discuss the pressures on young men surrounding sex and sexuality.
It was performed as part of Leith Late, NTS Exchange 16, Bongo Lives and Edinburgh Fringe.
Fragility was supported by Artcore Edinburgh and the National Theatre of Scotland.
Creative Electric X Freya Momomoses
Creative Electric create bespoke outreach projects for communities. Working with your organisation Creative Electric will create a project that suits the needs of your participants. We specialise in creating live art, contemporary performance, verbatim theatre and guerilla art workshops and can adapt these to suit particular themes.
Previous project partners have included:
National Theatre of Scotland
Edinburgh International Festival
Birds of Paradise Theatre
The Touring Network
Argyle Arts Collective
ITAC New York
Hidden Door Festival
Royal Conservatoire of Scotland
The Bongo Club
City of Edinburgh Council
Ashcraig Former Pupils Club
Link Up Women’s Support Centre
The Biscuit Factory
Unga Nyskapare (Stockholm)
For more information on Creative Electric outreach and to discuss creating your own project please email email@example.com