The Journey of an Idea. 2: Finding a language... written in 2016. / by Simon Jones

It's started raining again. It's been blowing a mighty gale all day, but that hasn't stopped my parents and me from going out for some lunch. It was sleeting and raining and we had hail this morning. Now we have rain and wind. I am sat by a fire. I am very lucky.

My performance piece, or play, or show is going to be on at The Dare Festival at the end of April (30th April) at The Shoreditch Town Hall. I am really looking forward to spending some time on this project. I have, to be fair, been almost ignoring it since I came back from Stratford-Upon-Avon. I guess I wanted to sort out my life, house and me out before anything else happened. Go on a holiday, have a break, read, paint the house and clean and make things ready for the rest of 2016. Do all those things before heading back into this world.

I guess though, like with all projects we invest in, this world of The Cycle Play was never far away. I began and have almost finished reading the Book, "Shadows on the Road" by Michael Barry. It is about his time as a professional road cyclist and domestique for The US Postal Team (Lance Armstrong) and Team Sky (Bradley Wiggins). It is getting my brain tuned in again with the language of cycling. This language will form some kind of base form, or note, to the piece. Some kind of lyricism on the language of a road bike racer. Understanding the rules of this sport are vital to unlocking how we build this character and the world they inhabit. Through investing in this spoken or written language and it's rules we can abstract it from it's form as far as we dare and still it will have a root in the world we exist as an audience (I hope!).

I want to taste the blood in my mouth. I want to experience the death-defying tuck. I want my legs to scream.

Also, in the time I have been back, I took part in a pretty inspiring workshop on Choreology taught by Olga Masleinnikova. We studied the language we use and the choices we make with our bodies in space. We studied the organic choices we make to inhabit the world in both the everyday and in dance, and then broke it down to find the inorganic, the things we want to highlight or play with or "fuck-up". We used the work we are involved in to test the language we were learning. For me a struggle is finding a non-physical language to The Cycle Play. How spoken word fits into my piece. I found this workshop was incredibly useful to understand and therefore unlock and play with language to tell the story. And certainly not exclusively in a linear narrative or linear sentence structure.

I am probably also ignoring the fact Marco Pantani was Italian. I can't speak Italian. Ha! Not that this piece is about Marco at all, but rather about some blur between him and me. Or whether any of that matters at all.

I still continue to have a lot of questions to ask in finding out what I want to make. Whether it is a blow by blow account of a cyclist journey to death, or something more akin to my dreams and the desperate nature of our memories. The subjectivity of what we choose to recollect. But I am starting to land on what the form of the work will be and am quite excited by the ideas I have in my head.

I highly recommend Olgas workshops. She is an excellent provocateur and teacher for all creatives. You don't just have to be a dancer to benefit from the teaching of Laban's Choreology.

I am not sure why yet, but the more I see and do, the more I want or need stillness. I am finding out how long I can push stillness in my own life and in the performance work I make. Can there be a point in stillness that the audience begin to present themselves upon me. I am not sure, but I'm excited by the prospect of testing that out.

In the meantime I am here in Devon, waiting for the rain to stop and spending time with my parents and thinking about buying a bike.