Bare Witness Theatre Company is an artistic vehicle led by Christopher Samuel Carroll. We produce work in Canberra and beyond, with a commitment to theatre that is physically rigorous and bristles with life. We're interested in work which exploits the immediacy of the live experience, and in particular, the performer at the threshold of their limits - in other words, 'in the mouth of the wolf'.
We've put on plays in Ireland, the U.K., Australia, and on occasion, someone's living-room. We draw from a wide tradition of theatrical styles, from cabaret to mime, from comedy to Butoh, to serve each story we tell.
More so than ever, we're preoccupied with personal stories which, because they are marginal, or unexpected, or inconvenient, face a battle for recognition against the generalised narratives that prevail in the public (and political) discourse.
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Christopher Samuel Carroll is an Irish actor, writer and theatre-maker, trained at the Samuel Beckett Centre, Trinity College Dublin and Ecole Internationale de Theatre Jacques Lecoq, Paris. As an actor, he has worked with companies all over Ireland, and as Artistic Director of Bare Witness Theatre Company, has developed work in ensembles and as a solo performer, with an emphasis on work that is dynamic and boldly theatrical.
Christopher’s practice is informed by a wide range of different theatrical styles and approaches. His foundation as an actor is that of a classical, conservatory training, with a heavy focus on traditional, text-based drama. His time working with nervousystem theatre company in Ireland, and subsequently, his contact with The Workcenter of Jerzy Grotowski and Thomas Richards in Pontedera, Italy, and Dairakudakan Dance Company in Tokyo, instilled in him a great appreciation for the value of a daily practice for the actor. As he has traveled and continued his development as an artist, increasingly creating his own, original work, he has been influenced by more radical, expressive forms, rooted in a highly physical approach to the actor’s craft.
As a teacher, Christopher is specialised in Movement for the Actor, and has also worked as a tutor for voice, acting, and dramaturgy, with students of all ages and levels. He has taught Movement and Acting at N.I.D.A. Open, Canberra Youth Theatre, Perform Australia (formerly C.A.D.A.), Kim Harvey School of Dance, Messengers Program (Tuggeranong Arts Centre), Belconnen Arts Centre and professional masterclasses through The Street Theatre, as well as private lessons for voice and audition prep.
Hanna Cormick is a performance artist with a background in physical theatre, dance, circus and interdisciplinary art. Her current practice is a reclamation of body through radical visibility.
She is a graduate of Ecole Internationale de Théâtre Jacques Lecoq (Paris), Ecole des Arts Chinois du Spectacle (Paris), Charles Sturt University's Acting for the Screen and Stage degree and NIDA's Young Actor's Studio, and has also undergone training with numerous experimental theatre practitioners including Thomas Richards and Mario Biagini at The Grotowski Center (ARTA Paris), Pan Théâtre at the Roy Hart Centre (Malerargues), and Per Brahe with the Balerung Dance Company (Bali).
Cormick is one half of the cirque-dance duo Les Douleurs Exquises, with Apollo Garcia, who have brought their signature danse apache to underground cabaret and electroswing clubs in Paris. They have also spent time working with Her Yerde Sanat Social Circus in refugee camps on the Turkish-Syrian border as the clown duo Salade & Socks.
She was a founding member of interdisciplinary art-science group Last Man To Die, who between 2009-2011 toured Australia with their audience interactive tech-driven work, and were shortlisted for an ArtsHub award for Innovation in the Arts.
Her performance practice spans close to a hundred productions over twenty years, with works in Australia, Europe and Asia.
Her first performance artwork as a disabled artist, The Mermaid, debuted at Art, Not Apart 2018, and is a confrontation of rare illness, invisible populations, the social model of disability and the climate crisis. For this work she was a finalist for the 2018 ACT Chief Minister’s Inclusion Award (Young Leader) and the National Award for Disability Leadership (Arts).