Ceschi + Lane present Confinement: a project exploring Motherhood in the Pandemic, taking place at the Walthamstow Wetlands in September. With the company’s highly distinctive costume-led choreography and innovative sound design, Confinement is a living testament to motherhood over lockdown. The project includes free creative workshops for mothers, performances and an online collective artwork.
Ceschi + Lane present Confinement: a project exploring Motherhood in the Pandemic, taking place at the Walthamstow Wetlands, in September 2022. Working with movement artist Masumi Saito and composer Helen Epega, and drawing on their own experiences of motherhood in the pandemic, Ceschi + Lane will create an outdoor live performance. Using their distinctive costume-led choreography and innovative sound design, the performance creates a surreal landscape, delivered to the audience through bone conducting headphones.
Confinement is a living testament to motherhood over lockdown, and explores the emotional, conceptual & lived experiences unique to motherhood in confinement. The piece draws conceptually on the Goddess of Confinement and deities, and on the historical traditions of confinement in childbirth.
The project also includes free creative workshops for local mothers and non-binary carers. In this space, we invite people to share their stories of parenthood while learning new skills through creative activity. The workshops will culminate in a collective artwork that will run alongside the site-specific performance.
Creatively, alongside the live performance we hope to develop an online, virtual experience - an echo of the live performance. Accessible everywhere, this provides a digital legacy of Confinement and aspires to invite wider communities to engage with the project and a conversation on maternal mental health. This element of the project has the potential to empower a larger group of mothers and carers, giving them better access to the project and celebrating their diverse experiences. Like the performances, these Performance Echoes will be free. In this way, we will open up creative provision, and create a legacy of remembrance to motherhood in confinement, unique to this point in time. We hope this project provides a space, both live and virtually, for parents to feel seen, heard, and a part of something beyond the live event.
Free, and open to everyone, the performances will be making the invisible seen, the unspoken heard.
Confinement comes at an incredibly important time.
Recent studies from the Maternal Mental Health Alliance (MMHA) show a marked increase in mental health issues experienced by mothers and carers during the pandemic; 6 out of 10 parents shared significant concerns about their mental health following Covid-19. This has had a disproportionately greater impact on women, who are more vulnerable than men to socioeconomic inequalities, gender inequalities, domestic violence and economic insecurity (Roberton et al., 2020; WHO, 2020). Perinatal mental health services had worrying gaps even before the crisis. The MMHA maintain that despite the increased need, services supporting women and families were impacted detrimentally.
Creative activity plays an important role in reducing stress, anxiety & social isolation. Confinement offers an opportunity for women & non binary carers across communities to engage in creative activity that brings them together to share and validate their experiences. Led by artists and experts in maternal mental health, the free workshop series will impart skills, info and resources to the participants which they can benefit from long term. Moreover, they will generate material for the final performances, involving participants collaboratively in the creation of the final piece.
Additionally, by adapting, recording and digitalising our work into ‘Performance Echoes’, we are making sure that people can access the production for free remotely and long after the live event. In this way we hope to make a living testament to motherhood through lockdown, and improve the wellbeing of our audiences long-term by alerting people to maternal mental health issues, and signposting resources and support communities.
The Company & Team
Ceschi + Lane have over 10 years experience working in theatre, opera and participatory settings, and our work has been showcased in festivals all around the world including the prestigious Prague Quadrennial (2015), BE Festival in Bilbao & Scenofest at the World Stage Design Festival in Taipei (2017). Formally Brave New Worlds, creators of “the tiny wonder that is Trinity” (Luke Jennings, the Observer), Ceschi + Lane have been transitioning to performance for outdoor and public spaces since 2019 with the support of 101Outdoor Arts.
Our practice sits between performance and visual art, exploring costume as a body based scenography. In our previous outdoor work at Greenham Common (see our pitch video for examples!), the costumes and stories told disrupted the landscape, blending the every-day with the spectacular, inviting the audience to reflect on their local context, its past or recent history, and their impact on its present and future communities.
Ceschi + Lane is made up by Valentina Ceschi and Kate Lane - for Confinement they are working with composer - Helen Epega (otherwise known as The Venus Bushfires), movement artist - Masumi Saito, Producer - Susannah Bramwell, Production Manager - Lizzie Debonnaire. Nissa Nishikawa and Yen-Ching Lin are also joining the project as performers / dancers.
We are partnering with a number of local and national groups to help make sure this project happens and reaches the communities we want to reach.
Waltham Forest Women’s Network (WFWN) is a community based organisation based in the borough of Waltham Forest. The network was established in 2005 by a group of local women passionate about empowering local women through bringing them together. Our vision is to empower and connect women to each other to support them to lead healthy and happy lives.
Motherly Love is a community for mums who are struggling with mental health and need a safe space to talk about their experiences with other mums.
Maternal Journal is an award-winning global community movement that uses creative journaling to boost wellbeing in pregnancy, birth and parenthood.
Mothers Who Make is a growing international movement for women and non binary people who care about creating, and create whilst caring.
Walthamstow Wetlands is where our performances are happening. It is a fully operational 211 hectare Thames Water reservoir site which is the main source of water supply for 3.5 million people. Walthamstow Wetlands is also an internationally important nature reserve, providing home and shelter to a wide range of wildlife.
101 Outdoor Arts is a national centre for arts in public space. They have supported us with an artistic residency to develop our work and ongoing guidance for outdoor performance.
Arts Council England invests money from the government and National Lottery to make sure everyone’s creativity is given a chance to flourish. We have been supported by their project grant fund.
Perhaps most importantly, your donations will help ensure that this project remains free and open to everyone. As a thank you, we have a number of rewards available. Every little bit helps, but if you can't donate, you can definitely still help us out! Please make noise about our campaign and our project. Share it on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, and bring it to the attention of all your friends!
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Want to know more?
If you have any questions about our crowdfunding campaign, the production, or any of the team, please do not hesitate to get in touch. You can contact us via email, firstname.lastname@example.org, or through our Instagram Page.