2013 Performance Poetry World Cup Champion Scott Wings, part of the Zen Zen Zo Physical Theatre Company in Brisbane, is performing his one-man spoken word/physical theatre Icarus Falling at C venues throughout August. We sent Features Editor James T Harding to find out more about this uncommon combination.
Shaping the world physically is so much fun, but how far is too far?
Tell us about the show.
Icarus Falling is the physical theatre/poetic story of Icarus' descent through the sky.
What drew you to the Icarus story for this show?
After coming up with the idea I realised how much the backstory was synonymous with my emotional state this year. There are versions where Icarus is just some arrogant kid. I wanted to contest that and explore the relationships that led to his fall. After reading about his father Daedalus I knew there was more to it than just the moral lesson mainly quoted.
What are the biggest challenges a show coming from Australia to the Fringe faces? How are you trying to overcome them?
At the start of the season the biggest challenge was jetlag. Now it's simple networking. Most of the networking at the Fringe happens at the parties and social events over a pint. But because my show is so physically and emotionally draining the last thing I want to deal with is a hangover. So I've been kinda sticking to myself and training and resting and performing. So I'm just hoping the show gets known through its quality.
Physical theatre and poetry don't often go together. What are the best and worst things about combining them?
Well I've never really enjoyed spoken word that was just standing there and speaking passionately. So my challenge was to have the body in crisis while telling the story, yet balancing that with the intent of the story. Letting the words breathe is important. But just talking at people is boring. Shaping the world physically is so much fun, but how far is too far? I think this show strikes a nice balance between the two.
If you could change one thing about the international spoken word-scene, what would it be?
I think art is valuable as catharsis. However spoken word events I've attended across the world tend to be less art and more catharsis. Icarus Falling is an incredibly vulnerable piece for me. So I've tried to make it more Show than Tell. However many spoken-word events are all Tell.