AUTHORS: Carran Waterfield
Carran is an independent theatre and performance maker. She is also a creative teacher and a published writer. Somehow, she says, she has become an elected local government councillor. She is sixty-five.
She founded and led the international touring company Triangle Theatre (UK) creating over 40 productions of physically driven theatre with accompanying educational and outreach programmes.
In 2009 she created a large-scale ensemble work on executions of women through history, The Last Women. It was Triangle’s last show. She says, ‘it matters to me that I don’t disappear and end up on the scrap heap, but also I don’t mind if I do since recycling and trawling through trash is useful to me.’
In 2011 her work changed direction. She began to address and reflect on her creative journey through a healing thread that was unravelling as a result of her dad’s death and various other traumatic events that subsequently engulfed her. She has focused on finding a way to understand her ancestral story through the healing power of meditation, movement and awareness. She has been collaborating with movement therapist Sandra Reeve and is discovering a way of making work outside the conventions of an established subsidised sector. The journey has been both challenging and rewarding; in her words, she is learning a lot about attachment and breaking old habits.
Trawling back, she worked as a Drama/English teacher in Coventry for nine years, following a brief time working in Theatre-in-Education. The inception of the National Curriculum drove her away from teaching. In 1989 she performed her first solo show, established a fledgling youth theatre, Bare Essentials and her own company Triangle. She received on-going voice and body training from a number of European based practitioners and teachers. Triangle became fairly well established and funded.
Between 1995 and 2000 Triangle was resident at the University of Warwick’s Institute of Education where she led projects training teachers in creativity. Her practice remained physically driven with European and Asian influences.
During the 2000s Triangle became resident company at The Herbert Museum and Art Gallery in Coventry. The work expanded training actors in interpretation and participatory techniques. Triangle installed small incidental exhibits in the museum’s foyer. They mounted large-scale immersive experiences involving groups of children and local communities. They founded and led The Little Herberts: a performance art group for children.
In 2010 she moved from the West Midlands to the North West navigating a new region collaborating with the universities of Salford and Manchester, teaching movement at ALRA North, developing an extensive residency at Heron Corn Mill in Cumbria and working on a major research project on Performance and Poverty for the University of Manchester. All this was supported by a renewed way of moving within the natural and built environment.
Most recently she has finished a fully illustrated children’s chapter book Redhair and Daffodil Friend. Its roots were formed as part of her very first solo project back in 1989: ‘Life is cyclical and I have found history does repeat itself’.
You can read more about her work here:
A Poetics of Third Theatre -Performer Training, Dramaturgy, Cultural Action. Jane Turner and Patrick Campbell. Routledge (2021)
She wants you to kiss her: Negotiating Risk in the Immersive Theatre Contract Richard Talbot. Reframing Immersive Theatre James Frieze (ed.) Palgrave Macmillan (2016)
Performing Heritage – Research, Practice and Innovation in Museum Theatre and Live Interpretation. Anthony Jackson and Jenny Kidd (eds.) Manchester University Press (2012)
Quantum Theatre -Science and Contemporary Performance. Paul Johnson Cambridge Scholars Publishing (2012)
All at Sea: Tracing Jouissance in the Digital Archives of Triangle Theatre Patrick Campbell .Bristol.ac.uk (2011)
Dugout! The Little Herberts Total Theatre Volume 15 Issue 3 Autumn Jessica Naish Total Theatre Magazine Print Archive (2003)
Identity – Even if it is a fantasy: the work of Carran Waterfield Jo Trowsdale New Theatre Quarterly Volume 13 number 51 Cambridge University Press 1997
To learn more about Carran’s work visit these websites: