Cannonballista Reviews

Mar 13 2018

Holly Stoppit
Image credit: Vonalina Cake

The reviews are in for Liz's Clarke's final outing of Cannonballista, the one woman show I directed last year and have been touring with since September.

To me, the show last week in Cardiff, on international women's day, felt like a fitting end to an incredible tour. We were in The Sherman Theatre studio, where Liz came as a young person to have her mind blown by crazy avant-guard performance art. Incidentally, it was also where I performed A Midsummer Night's Dream with Sherman Youth Theatre, a million years ago.

For the first time in both Liz's and my history of making theatre, we had a sign language interpreter (Erica James) on stage, making the show accessible for deaf people. This felt like an important development for our shared vision of making theatre accessible to all. I'm eager to continue to explore more ways of removing barriers and welcoming audiences into my future work. Erica was amazing to watch, both in the performance and throughout the tech, where she kept her hands busy, knitting hats for homeless people.

Liz reached new depths in her performance, allowing the images and words their full space, which allowed the audience their full experience. The post-show discussion gave us clear, unambiguous feedback that the audience were touched; when asked if they saw themselves in the show, the whole crowd raised their hands. Their comments were insightful and varied; for instance, one audience member told us they felt very sad throughout the show and another had laughed out loud throughout. This let us know we'd created a show that allowed people space to tap into their own stories and feelings without being told what to think or feel, which is exactly what we set out to do.

I'm very proud of Liz and the show we made and super grateful for all the support we received along the way. Here's what the reviewers say:

First up is "Cannonballista" by Othniel Smith in The British Theatre Guide:

"At the beginning of the show, Clarke seems to suggest that this may indeed be the last we see of Betty. Given the warmth and enthusiasm with which she was greeted by a lively, supportive and engaged audience, I find this hard to believe."

Read the full review here.

Next up is "Cannonballista, Sherman Theatre" by Natalie Paisey on Art Scene in Wales:

"This was a brave and endearing performance, with a hearty message."

Read the full review here.

Last up is “Dirt and Glitter. Lights and Sounds. Grief and Laughter” by Rimantė Ella Bivainytė on Quench, a student media website:

"Liz and Betty’s story is a great example...of the painful coping with sorrow and grief that everyone, at least once in a lifetime, experiences."

Read the full review here.

You can read my blog about the tour here.

You can read my blog about the process of creating the show here.

You can have a wander around Liz Clarke's website, by clicking here.

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