Since 1992 Talking Birds has been producing thoughtful, playful, resonant, mischievous and transformative meditations on people and place. Our work, which we call Theatre of Place, is characterised by a distinctive blend of humour, music and visual flair in venues both conventional and unconventional across the UK and internationally – from the Queen Elizabeth Hall on the South Bank, to Kilkenny Livestock Mart; from a cavernous underground car park in Scarborough, to a decommissioned hospital in Coventry, to a giant aluminium whale which swallows up audiences one at a time.
Often our work is made collaboratively, connecting people and place in richly imaginative moments of identification and insight. It is our experience that this work – always generous and thoughtful, in many cases gently provocative – is keenly, and often profoundly, felt by the communities in which it is presented.
We’re particularly interested in making work in places which the public don’t often get into, the sorts of places that you might stumble across by accident. Places which have interesting features, histories and former uses, perhaps layered with recollections and associations which are on the brink of slipping from living memory. Or places that are at the end of one use and not quite ready for the next.
Our projects invite people to explore a particular place of interest in a mediated way; weaving together its stories – real and imagined – to make accessible this neglected or forgotten space and encourage people to examine it in a new light.