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Physical Education


Physical Education is a new work by BCMG Apprentice Composer in Residence 2018-19 Robert Reid Allan, in collaboration with filmmaker Sasha Balmazi-Owen and actor/dancer Richard Court.

Childhood P.E. lessons are, for those without a natural capacity for sporting activity, oftentimes the site for cruelty and trauma. Hypermasculinity, unhealthy levels of competition and a focus on achieving 'the perfect body' creates an environment of violence, insecurity and self-hate for many of the children who partake.

Recounting memories of these times of our lives becomes in this piece a lens through which, on the one hand, the dynamics of violence, brutality and patriarchy are questioned, but also in which the need for physical intimacy and sexuality is explored. The piece also reclaims these dynamics: sporting imagery finds a new place in projected video on to the concert space, violent musical gestures sit alongside the physical gestures of the dancer, all the while the text weaves us through our nostalgia for the dreaded gym hall.

Physical Education lasts approximately 30 minutes.

Suitable for ages 18+.

Tim Anderson Conductor Richard Court Actor/dancer Birmingham Contemporary Music Group

BCMG Apprentice Composer in Residence is generously supported by The Leverhulme Trust.

Friday 21 7.30PMJune


CBSO Centre

Berkley Street

B1 2LF Birmingham GB

0121 767 4050

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