This Is Foreign (formerly Ruido) is a dance theatre show exploring translation, language and communication barriers. Work began on this piece in 2014 after I went to visit Mexico with my partner where I was struck by how difficult communication is when a common language is not shared, and so I was inspired to explore these ideas in the studio. From 2014-16 the work developed through research, performance platforms and opportunities to discuss and feedback with fellow artists and mentors.
This isolation and frustration that I had experienced got me thinking about people that live with language barriers on a daily basis and so in 2016 I received Arts Council funding to run a research and development project which drew together academic research, professional dance and community practise. In this R&D I worked with several community groups in Sheffield and Leeds all who experience language barriers either by living in Britain where English is not their first language or through hearing impairments, and I met with academics from the University of Sheffield and Sheffield Hallam University who research in areas of language (language acquisition and 2nd language learning). This research influenced the development of the work in the studio where I collaborated with sound artist Alejandro Albornoz and received support from artistic mentors Beth Cassani and Charlotte Vincent.
The show was performed at the University Of Sheffield’s Arts and Humanities Festival and at Migration Matters Festival (part of National Refugee Week) in 2017.