Pleased to announce…


The GBS Project (working title)

I am pleased to announce that the Arts Council have approved my application for funding for the research and development of ‘The GBS Project.

This is the first stage of development of a new piece of small-scale theatre which will happen in November 2015 with a view to gaining further funding to make and tour the production in spring/summer 2016. The piece will be a fusion of new-writing, dance and physical theatre.

GBS stands for Guillain Barre Syndrome, a condition which I contracted  in 2009, I went from normal to fully paralysed in 3 weeks and spent almost 6 months hospitalised, it took 2 years to be able to walk unaided following a lengthy recovery process where I had to learn how to walk, talk and eat again. The journey was long and difficult but my positive attitude, which did often falter, is the reason I was able to make a strong recovery. The story will not be a misery memoir, it will be moving and inspiring and reflective of my humorous personality as I recount stories such as freewheeling to the pub in my wheelchair and the catheter bag dropping out and getting caught in the axel. I used dance to improve my physical condition and would attend dance classes in my wheelchair when possible and not deterred by chronic fatigue. Here is a Blog I wrote about my experience with GBS.

The reason for me taking on this project is to raise awareness of the illness and the charity which supports GBS sufferers and their families, visit their website GAIN for more information on GBS. 2016 is also the centenary of Dr Guillain and Dr Barre diagnosing the condition in France in 1916.

I will be working with and supported by an amazing creative team which will be announced fully in due course. Nottingham based writer Nick Wood has been heavily involved in the planning and application process and must thank him for his support. Nick will now be commissioned to begin writing the play following interviews to gather material with my family, friends and medical professionals who aided my recovery. I am also looking forward to announcing a high profile disabled dance artist who will help me look at the relationship between disabled and non-disabled creative artists being formerly disabled myself.

I have been overwhelmed by support so far and must thank the following organisations who are offering support in various ways. Derby Theatre, Arc in Stockton, Deda, In Good Company,  and of course GAIN. A special mention for Sarah Brigham, Annabel Turpin, Stephen Munn, Ruby Glaskin and Caroline Morrice from each of those organisations respectively.

Hopefully what we create will inspire and inform, we have set up a Just-Giving page and any donations made will go directly to GAIN Charity who are limited by their size and capacity and any donations will be greatly received.

I cannot wait to get started and will be tracking our progress in blog and vlog format which can be tracked through #GBS


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