Osborne and What
Osborne & What - a circus theatre company creating contemporary shows with professionals and young people.
We direct, design and produce circus theatre shows, and collaborate with other companies and youth community groups. We make theatre shows using circus skills and techniques to help tell stories, and using circus equipment as theatrical set to create other worlds. Our shows are devised by the company and collaborators, use original soundtracks, and involve both actors and circus performers working to their individual strengths. We believe circus and movement can sometimes portray emotion better than words alone.
We are in the process of making a new show, called Planet B. Set in the future, it is a collaboration between circus performers and actors, and is based on the central themes of escape and climate change. We are working with a leading climate change scientist from Sheffield to support the making of the show, and this will also inform the workshops we plan to run with young people during the Research and Development stage of the new show.
We have previously been awarded funding by The Arts Council England to make and tour Birdy, a show based on the book by William Wharton; it travelled to London, Great Yarmouth, Sheffield, Llanelli, Brecon, Worthing and Canterbury. The show was described by Total Theatre as "A metaphysical investigation into how escapism is as sane a choice as any in a world that tries to suppress the human spirit....Proof that circus can be harnessed to theatre in the telling of complex and disturbing stories."
We are currently in the process of developing a new show, Planet B, and are planning a Research and Development phase to take place this summer at Seachange Arts in Great Yarmouth. Alongside this, we will be developing and running youth workshops on Creative Writing and Circus / Theatre skills, based around the central themes of the Planet B story.
Birdy is a story about two young men: Al is into lifting weights and meeting women, whilst his friend Birdy is obsessed with birds and is trying to learn to fly