I have always wanted to live abroad. I fantasised about the heat of Spain; I became seduced by seeing lots of Spanish theatre work at Flare festival in 2017. I fantasised about the efficiency of Germany after touring Concerto to Cologne in 2018, I remember finding the people so attractive. I fantasised about Portugal after two trips in 2015/2016; drinking espressos, drinking beer on a sun drenched plaza. I fantasied about Belgium. I fantasied about Italy. I fantasied about Switzerland. I fantasised about Austria. I fantasised about Paris, from a very young age; I dreamed of living nestled among the rooftops, making work in a studio behind a clock.
I did end up making work in a studio behind a clock with other marvellous artists as part of artist-led collective INTERVAL, I’ve even made an audio project about that clock called 11 Minutes (Bristol Time) which I’m hoping to share with you all soon. But INTERVAL was in Bristol, exotic in its own way but still my home town, my neck of the woods. INTERVAL and the members of it, are one of the things I will miss most about Bristol.
After thinking about it forever, I have decided to leave my hometown. After seriously thinking about it for a few weeks, I have decided to move to the Netherlands. The final motivating factor has been Brexit. When the transition period ends on 31st December 2020, moving, working, living in the EU will become much more restricted. I looked at my life as a timeline, start to imagined finish, from an outside point of view and it became clear that moving now, regardless of a plan, would make most sense. There were signals, signs and messages that I tuned into. I had met a stranger from the Netherlands who told me that I should just go, that it would be easier now and better not to wait. I helped my friend move out of their house, they were off to Berlin and gave me more details about the dreaded deadline but they also gave me the tangible confidence to move regardless of having everything lined up. After floating the idea around my friends, the excitement of a new place, new opportunities was too irresistible to resist.
I have moved to Utrecht in The Netherlands. I found a room in a gorgeous house with lovely housemates who have quickly become friends. Making the decision to take the leap was the hardest part. I’ve have been incredibly lucky to find a room and travel across safely during the pandemic. I have been here for 5 days now. I am looking for work, researching the theatre scene, getting used to all of the differences. I’ll be back in the UK as often as I can. I will miss seeing faces of my friends most. I think the ongoing Corona situation has granted me some perspective. This is now the beginning of a new chapter, an exciting adventure I hope but it’s true genre is still unknown, I look forward to reviewing it in a few years’ time.
Please message me if you’d like my new address in order to send letters, gifts, money. Also any links to the Dutch theatre scene, networks, people would be very welcome.
With love & warmth from Utrecht,