2007, Instructions for Use

Devised by Chris Crickmay and Alice Tatge and performed by Alice Tatge with sound by Wajid Yaseen. Shown at Dartington and at ‘Area 10’ London. 40mins

Ellen Kilsgaard and Chris Crickmay in performance of ‘Oh Monster!’

In conceiving this work we were interested in the nature of daily rituals and in the dimensions of freedom available in the details of a person’s life. In our lives we are faced all the time with instructions to follow. These may literally be the ‘instructions for use’ that go with the things we buy: how to cook spaghetti, work the TV, use the answer phone… or less literally, there are implicit instructions within the conventions we learn, telling us how to go about things in the way our families, our cultural, ethnic or economic groupings determine. But as our own imaginations come into play there is a chance to personalise our lives, and to free ourselves from a sense of empty ritual or merely following instructions. It is through the imagination that we derive a sense of identity and personal connection to the world around us.


“In a world somewhere between sleeping and waking, a person and a set of everyday objects come together in a room. What we seem to see is a succession of rituals or tasks in progress, but the objects keep changing their role and significance - they lose their familiar identity. A thread of events begins to unwind.....” (from programme notes, CC and AT)

Alice Tatge in performance at Dartington. Photos: Chris Crickmay