Interview: Sound of Silence

Our coaches are involved in a number of their own initiatives, some of which are pioneering. Penni Bubb is one of our acting coaches: in addition, she is the founder of Equal People Performing Arts; a charity who’s aim is to provide access to the performing arts to everyone (click here to read more on the charity). Because of the tone of the charity, she is able to combine her role as an acting coach, with dance based works that address the common issues we are facing as a society.

The latest is a piece called ‘Sound of Silence’ has attracted a lot of attention on social media; created to address and raise awareness of Mental Health in our society. With many sharing it and nearly 10,000 people having now seen it, we spoke to Penni about the piece:

Where did your inspiration for ‘Sound of Silence’ come from?

"The inspiration came from the music and the lyrics of the song initially, then from working with the dancers the story evolved through workshop. The dancers represent the different emotions of the central character with the one all in black symbolising the ‘Black Dog’ of depression"

Did the music, the idea or the choreography come first?

"The music, I heard it on the radio, obviously I knew the original but this version was so haunting and gave the song a completely different feel"

How did you decide on the cast for this piece?

"The central character had to be a good actor and someone I could work with on quite a deep level so that is why I chose Niamh"

They’re a very young cast; how did you get the kids to connect so well to the piece?

"We spend a lot of time improvising and just listening to the song.  We workshopped around feelings and drawing on each others experiences and the connection between the young people themselves.  We had some very emotional but interesting sessions and the result was a deep understanding between the group"

Where is it filmed?

"It was filmed in the undeveloped studio at our building in Brook Rd Rayleigh. We were after a derelict, disused hospital kind of feel"

What's next?

"We have just finished filming ‘Hanging Tree’.  A piece about an evil tree at the edge of a village, it draws parallels with that of the Tree representing a mother and the villagers the children, they are drawn to the tree even though they know it is evil and will hurt them"

Follow Mushroom Theatre Company on Facebook and Youtube to keep up to speed on the release of 'The Hanging Tree' and watch 'Sound of Silence' below and tell us what you think. To read more about Penni click here