On our way to Baycourt last Friday to see Andy Field’s show Lookout, I knew there’d be a conversation involved between an adult and a child, and some form of audience participation. Other than that, I had no idea what to expect.
That’s because you aren’t really told what’s going to happen. Now that the show is over, I can give you a little insight into our experience, but there’s a level of secrecy beforehand that we loved (shows should do this kind of thing more often, humans love a good surprise).
We, the eight audience members, were led from Baycourt to the top of a parking building and each given a speaker. We stood looking out (get it?) across Tauranga CBD and beyond, each listening to a student from Papamoa Primary School describe what they imagined might happen to our world: a hopeful future, then a disastrous one, followed by each precious prediction of life at 90-years-old (a personal favourite: “When I’m 90 I will have my grandchildren around me, they will be very sweet, and they will look just like me.”)
The students came out halfway through to talk to their respective audience member. I realised then that if you’re not a teacher or a parent, you’re not often presented with the opportunity to really talk with children. It’s an absolute privilege – you get to talk to someone whose mind and imagination are completely limitless. This came through especially when the students described their ideal future Tauranga: there was so much fun involved. Yes, there were fewer cars and everyone could afford a house – but, these houses were all painted bright colours, and when you left work you could simply swing down a vine hanging from your building lot. In their future, we really enjoy life – we don’t just struggle through ‘the daily grind’.
Andy Field (UK) collaborates with primary schools all over the world to produce Lookout – read more about him here, and check out the other Lookout projects around the world here! Awesome mahi by our mates at Baycourt for bringing Tauranga such a unique experience.
Image from Auckland show as part of Auckland Fringe. Images from Tauranga show will be uploaded here soon.