Created by Foster&Dechery
‘With Epic we will go on a quest for History; the big one, written about in books. The one with World Wars in it, with memorable dates and names you learn at school, but also the personal one, the human one, the one you can relate to.’
Chloé, Lucy, Pedro and Ed track down the history of their own families, digging up the secrets of an English family in the Northern mines, a Portuguese family going through a 50 year-long dictatorship and a war in Angola’s jungle, a French family caught between colonialism in Alger and May 1968 Paris, and a grandfather on a torpedoed boat at the close of World War II.
A playful and experimental journey through the past hundred years, Epic combines personal stories, video interaction, fanciful re-enactments of key 20th century events, and a cameo from Bertolt Brecht. Epic creates moments of intimacy while also connecting us to the bigger picture.
Featuring a cast of four international performers, Epic takes a fresh and ambitious angle on 20th century history and its impact on our lives today. With playfulness, affection, and occasional bouts of anger, the show re-visits 20th century moments; both those that have made their way into the history books and others that tie us personally to the century.
Epic toured to 12 venues in the UK in May and June 2011, to: Exeter Phoenix, Exeter; Tobacco Factory, Mayfest festival, Bristol; greenroom, Manchester; The Carriageworks, Leeds; Soho Theatre, London; Dartington Arts, Totnes; North Wall, Oxford; Pulse Festival, Ipswich; and Colchester Arts Centre, Colchester
Epic was first developed during a 3 week-long Research and Development phase in Spring 2010 thanks to support from the Corn Exchange Newbury where the company had a residency and to BAC, where they performed a scratch version of the show, as part of their Scratch festival.
Rehearsals for the final show happened in April 2011, and the company were joined by several exciting new collaborators including Sharon Smith (Gob Squad/Max Factory) and Mike Tweddle (B-festival co-founder) as well as dramaturgs, music composer Bob Karper, video designer Ian William Galloway (Mesmer) and lighting designer Martin Langthorne.
Devised and performed by: Chloé Déchery, Lucy Foster, Pedro Inès and Edward Rapley
From an original idea by: Chloé Déchery and Lucy Foster
Dramaturgy: Sharon Smith and Mike Tweddle
Lighting Design: Martin Langthorne
Video Design: Ian William Galloway
Other Video Material: Chris Eley
Composition & Sound Design: Bob Karper
Other Original Music: Nick Gill
Choreography: Pia Nordin
Designer: Katherina Radeva
Photography: Manuel Vason
Produced by David Luff
The show was commissioned by the Corn Exchange Newbury and was funded by the Arts Council England.
A huge thank you to all those who supported the Epic fund raising campaign on We Fund! We are delighted to announce that we reached our £5000 target, which was a crucial final part of our budget.