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Panic

14/48 Leicester is getting closer. We’re a day away from the first all company meeting.

The panic has set in.

Not a panic because I have a mission critical job which I feel I can’t do. The panic I’ve forgotten something or, more importantly, got something wrong. I did book the hotel for the right days, didn’t I? I did book the train ticket for the right place and destination, didn’t I? Crikey, I did book the right hotel, didn’t I?

I’m also going over words and phrases in my head. I don’t want the blog to be a constant stream of me saying, “This is {insert name here} and they are fucking awesome.” The trouble is the people I know doing the festival are fucking awesome and it’s difficult to think of new ways to say “fucking awesome” when you want to be both accurate and equal across the board.

There is also the fear of my own strange and individual humour. Some of you may think Neil Reading keeps bees, Liam Thornton’s real name is Greg or Pove reads Maeve Binchy novels. These are all little white lies I started to amuse myself and twist a conversational carriage off the tracks. There is no rhyme or reason to it and I give little thought to what I’m going to say until I’ve said it. From Thursday to Sunday I have a blog, an audience and a self imposed word count. It’s safe to say, I can’t be trusted.

I want to do 14/48 Leicester proud. I might just be blogging but I want to create a blog which is informative, entertaining and something else to complete the three part list.

So yes, I’m panicking. But I’ve checked and the hotel is right. The train ticket is right. I know words and I’ll put something like “at least one fact in this post is made up.”

It’ll be fine… But I’m still panicking. The thing is… Those jeans I’m wearing on Thursday… Does my belly look big in them?

Dave Pitt
3rd May 2017. 20:15
@davethepitt

Gender Neutral

So we’re one day away from the launch night of May 2017’s 14/48 Leicester, and we have something else to throw into the mix to make this festival even more interesting…

We’d been toying with the idea for a while based on some discussions with our American (and West Mids) counterparts and are pleased to announce that this festival will be gender neutral.

So, what the hell does that mean?

Well, each festival our writers are set a brief to write a 10 minute play, based on the theme that was pulled form a hat. The only other information they get, is where their play will fit in the running order, and the number of male and female actors they are writing for. But why… why do we give them a number of genders to write for? We don’t categorise the actors in any other way; race, sexuality, religion, so why gender? Well, let’s find out what happens… is it possible for our writers to create a ten minute piece of theatre overnight, without this piece of info? Will we end up with seven plays about amorphous sci-fi entities, will it prove difficult to form narrative without relying on some of the cliched stereotypes formed by the relationships between ‘men’ and ‘women’?

Personally, nah… I think it’ll be fine. Because I trust the creative process, and I’m a bit of a hippy; but the only way to find out is to do this thing and pull it apart afterwards. So, if you come to watch this weekend, and have an opinion on how our gender neutral experiment worked out. Give us a shout, comment on here, hit us up on twitter or facebook, and let’s see what we learn. Other than that, let’s make theatre, drink beer and have a good time.

Cheers. @bobchrister

 

Walking a Dog Behind Enemy Lines?

In 4 days time I board a train in Wolverhampton and make the short, cross country jaunt into Leicester.

It is another of the 14/48 Festival and for the first time ever I will be blogging. Blogging is an odd discipline for 14/48. If 14/48 was a war blogging would be a person stationed at the front line but their sole job is to take the general’s dog for a walk out of range of enemy tanks. For everyone else the pressure is on. Bullets and missiles will fly past their faces and landmines will threaten to blow apart their weak and precious leg twigs. I’ll be walking a small dog. While elsewhere people have to pull out their A game to make the show a success I can, quite literally, leave the dog tied up to a lamppost with a bowl of water and some Winnalot and the show will be unaffected. A substandard script will destroy a weekend for scores of people. A substandard blog will be ignored and forgotten.

This results in people, myself included, believing me blogging will result in my base camp being constructed next to the keg. I will then proceed to indulge in a weekend of alcoholic destruction not seen since Keith Moon and Oliver Reed once suggested popping down the boozer for a couple. You know, that boozer with a hotel next to it, a swimming pool on the ground floor and let’s drive there in my Bentley.

I’m aware within Wolverhampton and Leicester I have a reputation for “hitting the keg”. This is partially true and partially false. I’ve always, without fail, produced a script. I may have been a little drunk before writing and I may have been very drunk after writing but while writing I am sober, alert and busy delivering the goods. As everyone else hits the keg with some wild abandon on Thursday night I am tucked away writing. As they hit the key on Friday night I am tucked away writing.

And yes, come Saturday morning at 10am once all the writing duties are out the way, I hit the keg. I hit the keg hard. Captain America’s shield against the face of a non-American while disregarding basic rights for those suspected of criminal activity hard.

At the last 14/48 festival in Wolverhampton there is a 20 minute video of me, face painted white, half standing, half staggering in front of a camera while I’m asked questions. I don’t know why my face was painted white. I’d written a script about sperm and the actors playing sperm had their faces painted white so I assume it was a desire of mine of fit in. I remember nothing of being filmed and refuse to watch the video. I live with myself 24/7 and more of me will not lead to an advancement towards Nirvana. But the point is, I’d written the script. Three sperm looking for an egg which was a metaphor for the EU referendum. I reckon I deserved to hit the keg hard after accomplishing such a feat.

But this time, I’m blogging. I see my job as letting the audience behind the magicians cloth. But also letting the people taking part behind the cloths they don’t see. What’s it like being in the band? In the design team? Being an actor? Doing lighting? Sound? Directing? A writer? The only thing I can’t find out is, “What’s it like realising you’re a turkey in a Dave Pitt play?”

Which leads to the question… when can I hit the keg? Yes, I could let the blogging slip by but anyone who knows me will realise I can’t do that. The blog has to be the best it can be. It has to reverberate around 14/48 and cause people to notice, appreciate and hell… even love the blogs. I can’t do that if I’ve got a white painted face and am unable to stand up.

To me the magic of 14/48 is the whole weekend and the job of the blogger is to document the weekend. It begins as I board the train and ends as I walk back into my house on Sunday afternoon. It includes all aspects of the weekend including the keg hitting. But I’m not sure I can hit the keg and successfully document the hitting of the keg by others. I’m not Hunter S Thompson.

As a writer I’m used to feeling like I’m not part of society and instead peering over the wall and looking in. I wonder if 14/48 Leicester will see me standing back, watching in a non-participatory way? Will it be a relatively “dry” festival?

In four days… we will find out.

Dave Pitt
30th April 2017. 14:15
@davethepitt

I Buongustai are feeding our artists again!

We’re really pleased to announce that local independent foodies, I Buongustai, will be serving up a slice of their fantastic Italian Street food to feed our artists on Friday 6th May.

They’ll be launching a new menu too on Thursday 28th April, so head on down to 82 Granby Street to sample some of the food we’ll be tucking into on the 6th! We recommend the Polpettine!

14/48 Takeover is back Saturday 4th June

It’s 14/48 for all the family!

As part of The Spark Arts for children festival, 14/48 Leicester are giving 12 young writers the opportunity to create 4 short plays with the help of a team of professional writers. Across 4 days (Tuesday 31st May to Friday 3rd June – 10am to 3pm each day), the young writer’s creative skills will be stretched and developed through a series of fun exercises and activities. At the end of day 4, the 4 new plays created will be placed into sealed envelopes and selected at random by a team of professional theatre makers before staging them using the usual time-limited 14/48 process. Book a space now for just £40 for all 4 days, including lunch!

1448TO_writing 5In just 10 hours a team of professional directors, actors, designers, musicians and technicians will take the words of our young writers from page to stage, complete with set, costume, props and a live score. Staging our plays for a family-friendly 6:00pm performance on Saturday 4th June. Tickets are available at just £4 each, click here to visit The Y’s website for booking details.

All activity takes place at Leicester’s Y Theatre (located on East Street opposite Leicester Train Station) as the city’s oldest theatre continues to support the city’s newest work.

 

14/48 For Laughs Artist Roster!

It’s that time again! Our list of Artists for 14/48 For Laughs is here! We are delighted to announce a fantastic array of Veteran and Virgin Artists… with Comedians added to the mix for the first time… Don’t forget to book your tickets!

Actors

Stuart Reid
Jonny McClean
Georgina Elsom
Kirsty Mealing
Fran Richards
Becky Wright
Rebecca Newman
Nadi Kemp-Sayfi
Jade Pearce
James Kerr
Joe Derrington
Lucy Tuck

Directors
Neil Reading
Charlotte Bond
Paul Rogers
Andy McWilliam

Design Team
Daisy Edwards
Holly Clothier
Lucy Ovenall
Mick McGuigan
Kirsty Povey
Jenny Cross
Hannah Smith

Writers
Jayne Lewis
Alison Dunne
Matt Beames
Hannah Torrance

Comedians
Kirstry Munro*
Matt Watts*
Claire Cogan*
Dan Nicholas*

Band
Les Hayden
Joe Doyle
Doug Deans

Stage Manager
Tracey Butcher

Photography
Allan Levy

Artist Liaison
Amy Christer
John Kirby
Amber Collins*

Marketing
Sheetal Amliwala

 

 

14/48 For Laughs!

14/48 For Laughs sees 4 short comic plays written, rehearsed and staged in just 24 hours as part of Dave’s Leicester Comedy Festival. Hosted by David Morgan (the latest co-host of ITV’s ‘I‘m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here NOW!) with support from a selection of Leicester’s finest stand-ups, the night throws quick fire challenges at our comedians alongside the speedily produced pieces of comic theatre.
“There is nothing like the energy, talent and unbounded creativity of 14/48. There is no other form of theatre that I look forward to more.”

Join us at 8pm on the 17th at The Y Theatre to see the results, and keep an eye out on our twitter feeds @1448leicester @1448uk for some behind the scenes action.

Buy your tickets from The Y’s website here…

Want 2 FREE tickets? Tweet us a theme @1448leicester to kick start proceedings using the hashtag #1448ThemesForLaughs if yours gets drawn, you’ll win 2 FREE tickets! See here for full details…

We’re also pleased to announce that the lovely Silvia and Massi at ‘I Buongustai’ will be feeding our artists with a selection of artisan Italian streetfood. Check them out on facebook here, or visit them in person at 82 Granby Street… we recommend the Calzoni!

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Supported by Leicester Arts Festivals via Arts Council England.
Photo 29-04-2015 11 52 12

14/48 Leicester returns to The Y Theatre, Leicester on Friday 4th and Saturday 5th May!

The 14/48 Festival, The World’s Quickest Theatre Festival, returns to The Y Theatre, Leicester 4th and 5th May

It’s a great not-to-be-missed opportunity for audiences to see 14 plays which have been written, rehearsed, designed, scored and performed in 48 hours, 7 different plays each night!

Performance times are 8pm and 10:30pm on both Friday 4th and Saturday 5th May and tickets are £7 full price and £5 concession with the Festival ticket at £10 full price and £8 concession which provides the opportunity to watch all 14 plays across the two nights!

For more information, head to The Y’s site here.

We hope you are able to join us at The Y Theatre, the hub of 14/48 UK! 🙂

 

14/48 Interview with… Paul Rodgers!

2015-11-21 16.33.11
Paul expressing his extreme excitement.

Have you been involved in 14/48 before?
Yes. Directing, design and band.

What are you doing for this 14/48 festival?
Design and acting.

What’s your experience been like so far?
Cracking. Tiring. Stressful. Wonderful. Amazing. Fun. Designing was some of the most fun I’ve had at 14/48 because of the team and the mental atmosphere. It’s really good fun because you’re involved in all the plays and creating all of them.

What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about getting involved next time?
Be ambitious but know your limitations. Don’t be afraid to make big bold choices because there’s enough support and talent that you can do anything. Hold on a minute, I’m being beavered. (He has something very large and odd attached to his back, and that’s all I’ll say.) There’s enough support and talent that you can bark with the big dogs. Or go big or go home. One of those. I don’t know. Make it sound like I’m cool.

Would you rather talk like Jar Jar Binks or talk like Jar Jar Binks?
Neither. I wish he would die in a fire.

If you had to describe your 14/48 experience so far in no more than three words, what would it be?
Four or three? …Wait, are those my three words?

14/48 Interview with… Michael Southan!

2015-11-21 15.44.48One of our brave writers persevering on through the lack of sleep!

Have you been involved in 14/48 before?
Yes, I blogged for 14/48 Wolverhampton in June!

What are you doing for this 14/48 festival?
I’m writing.

What’s your experience been like so far?
Really good. Seeing the process from the start transform into a whole show complete with actors and the set and the technical elements is great.

What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about getting involved next time?
Do it! Absolutely the maddest weekend you’ll ever have. It’s really nice to work with the community to achieve something. Relationships and friendships are built so quickly over such a short space of time and for me, as a writer in the company of so many other writers who have different ways of working, it really influences and helps you become better.

Would you rather talk like Jar Jar Binks or look like Jar Jar Binks?
Definitely talk.

If you had to describe your 14/48 experience so far in no more than three words, what would it be?
Insane, creative and sleepless.