Case 2: Commission by British Society of Gerontology

Photo: Actors in rehearsals for Who Do We Think We Are? by Sonja Linden and company © ViSiBLE and Nadia Otshudi

The brief

Conference organisers for the 44th British Society of Gerontology Conference (2015) attended our show Who Do We Think We Are? (2014) which featured 10 actors aged between 60 and 83, playing themselves across different ages in a show that spanned a hundred years from 1914 to 2014. The conference organisers were so struck by unique nature of the show and its diverse representation of older people, that they commissioned an extract from it for their annual conference at Newcastle, hiring the Northern Stage theatre studio, for the performance.

Our response

We selected a number of extracts that featured three of the actors in scenes from their own lives, and intercut these with extracts from the film of the original production featuring scenes with the whole company, to give a sense of the scale of the piece as well as its visual and musical aspects. The performance was preceded by a brief introduction by one of the actors, contextualising the extracts and introducing the company. The performance ran for 30 minutes and was complemented by a considered discussion with the audience about the production, the company, and its mission to celebrate and transcend age, and the impact of using personal and family narratives to communicate this. 

The outcome

We performed to a full house at Northern Stage downstairs studio on Tuesday 30th June 2015. The Q and A brought about a whole host of extremely positive responses and we have been invited back by the British Society of Gerontology for future collaborations.

Click here to learn more about Who Do We Think We Are?

“We are always looking for good ways of getting people to think about ‘ageing’ and ‘growing older’ in a different and more positive way, so Visible is just a perfect example.”
Barbara Douglas
Strategic Director, Quality of Life
Scroll to top