Back in 10 – The Research Stage

Back in 10 – The Research Stage

Hi, I’m Jon Rogers and I’m working with Black Country Touring (BCT) to help devise a series of performances for BCT’s ‘Back in 10’ project in partnership with the Black Country Living Museum. I’ve just graduated from Wolverhampton University and this is my first job in the theatre industry, a very scary prospect! The team have made my two colleagues and me feel extremely welcome during our first two weeks.

First things first we set about doing some research. We knew what we wanted; stories from visitors at the museum and facts from the demonstrators (the costumed characters) who work there. Having just completed a dissertation, research is something me and the other two graduates know a thing or two about! We were given a head start with some notes from the museum, which was very helpful and much appreciated!

With some basic research in the bag and a list of places the core artists working on the project wanted to explore further, we set off figuring out the best way to find all the juicy bits about the museum. We decided that good old questions were the way forward, I mean, who wouldn’t want to talk to three lovely graduates when trying to have a day out with their families?

Luckily it turned out my colleagues also thought this was a good idea! So we put our heads together and came up with some questions to ask the visitors at the museum.  After sending these to the museum to be cleared, off we went on the hunt for hidden stories from the shops of the Black Country!

Thankfully, the people enjoying their days out were more than happy to answer questions about their memories of the Black Country. So far, we have had some great stories from visitors including a runaway horse and an incident with a clothes mangle. After visiting the Wolverhampton Archives, we’ve also added our research of Sunbeamland; tales of smoking rabbits out of holes and their own football chant.

It’s safe to say Back in 10 will have loads of stories to choose from and adapt for the performances at the museum. They’re happening as part of the Summer Evenings (on the first four Fridays in August after 4pm) at Black Country Living Museum.

 

Let’s face it, nobody tells a story like Black Country folk!