dirty history

MA Degree Performance: Dirty History

Dear World,

I’d like to personally invite you to my final degree performance at the University of Brighton. Over the past year, I have been working towards the MA in Performance & Visual Practices. Dirty History is one of the projects that arose from this period. ​


Dirty History is a sensual representation of sexual memory through ritual, soil, & time. The performance—consisting of ritual-like movements and autobiographic text—takes place along an expanse of 9,000L of compost. Through poetry, both live & prerecorded, I will introduce a sampling of recalled (markedly queer) intimacies and sexual memories. I will slowly unearth a history by working the soil and divulging memories, hoping to break down the performed ritual. For an hour, I invite you to sit with me in this mound of earth. Don’t worry. You’ll have a seat.

Be well,

Thursday 11 September 2pm
Friday 12 September 6pm & 8pm
All performances are free.

Sallis Benney Theatre
The University of Brighton
58-67 Grand Parade
Brighton BN2 0JY

For further information: MA Performance & Visual Practices Degree Show Group Tumblr

Compost + My Body = Comfort


These last couple of months have been quite stressful.  Generally, I try to have a semi-positive outlook on what’s to come.  However, as my final degree performance for the MA is quickly upon me, I find myself worrying about things I cannot control…ever! During this month, my mantra has been: “I have control over my body. I have control over the compost. I don’t have control over anyone or anything else.”—at this time, at least.

Admittedly, I’ve been away from the soil for a while.  Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve left cerebral-mode and decided to (literally) plunge my whole being into the earth in my rehearsal space at Uni.  I have not been my best self; I have not been happy-go-lucky Ryan—perhaps I never was that person. hmmm?  Being back in the compost, though, has alleviated a lot of tension in my heart and mind.  I can’t really explain it any other way, but the soil is intoxicating in the most natural sense of that word.  Touching it. Breathing it in. Lying down in it. I love it!

A couple of days ago, a friend sent me this article from a gardening know-how site: “Antidepressant Microbes in Soil: How Dirt Makes You Happy”.  DING DING DING! 

I’m a believer! There’s more to dirt than dirt!

I’m certainly not opposed to Dirty History making Dirty Happiness in September.

Be well,