“In My Shoes is back after successful sell out run at The Crucible theatre at Sheffield Playhouse last autumn telling the story of a father who can’t find a bond with his son, a person with self confidence problems, a couple with marriage issues and an individual in need of anger management and a reflection on everybody’s innermost insecurities.
To save the cast of frustrated characters each must attend an extreme hip hop therapy session, allowing them to consider the difficulties faced by others to develop their understanding of how it feels to be in another person’s shoes…
“It feels wicked to be back. All our dancers are much stronger dancers and performers this time around. We’ve tweaked quite a few sections of the show to reflect our creative as artists, and we can’t wait to get on the road again,” said Nathan Geering, artistic director of Rationale Productions.
“The first run we did was at the Crucible Theatre [last autumn] we absolutely smashed it! It was wicked. The audience was really responsive to everything; a lot of the sections went down a hell of a lot better than what we expected” he continued.
The concept for In My Shoes came about during research and development for the production when members of the crew presented stories of what they wanted to express to an audience: darker moments in their lives, personal experiences and difficult moments. George Clinton once said “you can walk a mile in my shoes, but you can’t dance a step in my feet,” something the acclaimed Rationale Productions holds core to their hip hop theatre production.
“We all thought: We all sound like we’ve all been a little messed up at one time or another, so why not go for an extreme hip hop therapy session? Because then it’s the opportunity for the therapist to listen to every individual’s problem and try to fix it. That’s pretty much how the story got formed.”
Owing to the personal commitments of each of the group members having to juggle day jobs and study, Rationale rehearsed late evenings into to the early hours of the morning with little funding but lots of faith to bring In My Shoes together, and the work has paid off, developing them a relationship with Sheffield City Council, the Crucible Theatre, as well as the regional Arts Council.
In the past Geering was part of the cast for Jonzi D’s theatre production TAG: Just Writing My Name, and has used his years of experience to tailor In My Shoes into a well rounded production.
“The lessons I learned from TAG were invaluable in terms of work ethic and making sure that you try and explore an idea to its fullest rather than just having tonnes of ideas and only scratching the surface of them all,” explains Nathan. “So what we’ve done is put a lot of thought into each scene and each character and concept and explored them as much as we possibly can.”
Nathan Geering is the hip hop rep for Breakin’ Convention in Sheffield.”