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Thursday 16th June 2022

Albion, Awake!

— The Cube
Multimedia theatre, channelling the life and words of William Blake
price: Headfirst Tickets

HEADFIRST STAFF PICK

“William Blake’s spiritual anarchist vision feels like it was birthed in 2022. This solo multimedia psychodrama will raise the ghosts of his imagination, philosophy, biography and visual art right in front of you.”
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Information:

Albion, Awake! is a one-man performance that unleashes Blake’s energy on stage, envisioning his life, politics and relationships through his letters, poetry, prose and artwork. His limitless imagination explodes prejudices of race, gender, identity and what it means to be human. Blake’s work aims to heal our divided selves in a divided world and champions the triumph of imagination over all systems of oppression.

1799-1804 is a crucial time in the life of William and Catherine Blake as they leave London for a new and promising life in an idyllic cottage by the sea in Felpham, West Sussex. Hopes are dashed with the onset of Catherine’s frequent illness; the Blakes’ survival dependant on pursuing commercial work at the expense of their visionary masterworks; Blake’s growing alienation from his patron, the poet and author William Hayley and finally, his arrest and trial for sedition. Yet out of this adversity Blake forges his epic illuminated poem: Milton, which begins with the ‘second national anthem’, Jerusalem.

Albion, Awake! combines Blake’s own words with the mesmerising power of his Illuminations: the exquisite hand-coloured engravings that form an essential part of his major published works. Using Michael Chekhov’s radical techniques for the actor, strongly rooted in the power of imagination and archetypes, this performance is a layered, multimedia experience of psychophysical theatre and a living embodiment of Blake’s Visionary Forms Dramatic.

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