In July 2017 John published ‘Climbing The Mountain: The Performer’s Journey Into Presence’. Initially it is available only as an e-book, with a printed edition to follow.
The book contains thirty short talks – talks that follow a six-week training programme from first hesitant meetings, through increasingly complex understanding, through to the ensemble’s final farewells. It’s a journey you are invited to share.
‘Climbing The Mountain’ is practical, anecdotal, philosophical, theoretical, spiritual, irreverent, poetic, informal, precise and – most importantly – written in the authentic voice of the rehearsal room. This is how we talk when we train, full of paradox, repetition, metaphor, contradiction, humour and life.
The topics explored include: Presence, Liveness, Spontaneity, Blockage, Reactivity, Improvisation, Physical Actions, Pleasure, Positive Feedback, Self-Reflection, Self-Acceptance, Attention, The Use of the Senses, Multi-Tasking, Self-Disicpline, The Repetitive Nature of Practice, Ensemble, Ethics, Easefulness and Personal Empowerment. These are building blocks for dynamic, powerfully charismatic performance across art forms and aesthetics. The talks roam across history, disciplines and cultures, bringing everything I have to bear on the elusive task of being present in ones work in each transcendent moment.
‘Climbing The Mountain’ offers the most authentic encounter I can give you (apart from having you in the room with me) with Self-With-Others, the improvisational, principle-based psycho-physical training that’s at the heart of all my work, and of the training at The DUENDE School of Ensemble Physical Theatre.
At the moment ‘Climbing The Mountain’ is only available as an e-book. I hope to make a printed version available later in the year.
The nature of practice is this: however far you climbed the mountain yesterday, today you start again from the bottom. Each day we must do our work, walk our path, learn what we are ready to learn. However well you know the mountain, you still have to climb it today if you want to get to the top today.
Climbing The Mountain is available from the following e-retailers:
Amazon Kindle Store: http://bit.ly/ctmamazon
Books on Google Play: http://bit.ly/ctmgoogle
10% of profits from the sale of ‘Climbing The Mountain’ will be used to support research into epilepsy in children.