Tea With Flo And Chris

Candoco Dance Company, March 24th, 2018
Flo meets with Programming and Touring Producer Chris

This week I present you our latest addition to the team, Programming and Touring Producer Chris!

Chris is covering for Marianne whilst she is on maternity leave.

Q1: How do you like your tea?

A: Tea… Peppermint. Without milk or sugar. Warm. -You seem to be more of a coffee guy. I am much more of a coffee guy. Peppermint tea as a first cup of hot liquid for the day but then coffee throughout the morning.

Q2: What is the most stressful task you have had to do in this job recently?

A: Well, I’ve only been here a few weeks and I haven’t found it stressful so far. I think I’ve just been trying to assimilate lots of information, so I think the stressful thing has been… You know what it’s not stressful. I’m not stressed! -Well that’s good to hear! I’m not saying it’s all good, but you know there are things to do, and because I’m here on a time-limited contract as maternity cover for Marianne, I want to do well over those nine months. And it’s a good company to work for and I applied for the role because I wanted to work for Candoco, so it’s great being here really. ­-Well I’m glad that you’re enjoying your time here!

Q3: What is the most satisfying thing you have had to do in the two weeks/recently?

A: I think that for me the priority for over the next few months is getting gigs for the company and getting tour dates confirmed. I think a satisfying thing is when presenters and promoters are interested in booking the company’s work, which is a validation of what the company is about and makes a tour booker’s job a whole lot easier.

Q4: Savoury or sweet?

A: Depends on the time of the day… Do I have to be honest..? *thinks really deeply… Savoury, just. But only because of cheese. -Cheese is a must.

Q5: How long have you been doing your job?

A: So, I started in arts administration in 1987, so that’s thirty years that I’ve been working in arts management. I haven’t always been a producer. My first job was six months as administrator with an unfunded cooperative theatre company in Birmingham. And, after that, I worked in Wales for a lot of my professional life. I worked with community dance projects, theatre companies, I’ve been General Manager for producing theatre at the Sherman Theatre in Cardiff, I was director of a team called Wales Arts International which is something in between the British Council and the Arts Council. And for the past few years, I’ve set up a little company called Fieldwork and I’ve been working on a certain amount of projects on a sort of freelance basis and through Fieldwork, which I run with someone called Ceri. So, I’ve done lots of things, I’ve produced, I’ve presented, I’ve been in funding roles, advocacy roles, worked with independent artists, worked on some quite large-scale productions as well, so a real mix of things. -Wow that is quite a career! It’s gone fast, those thirty years. -What a career you’ve had so far!

Q6: What is your favourite colour?

A: Midnight blue.

Q7: If you could try out another role in the company, which one would you choose?

A: I’d be a dancer, definitely. -Have you danced a lot? No, I originally trained as an actor at the Welsh College of Music and Drama and did a lot of extra-curricular dance training so dance has been an important part of my life for a long time. Spending a day with the dancers in the studio would be good.

Q8: Television or Books?

A: Newspapers. -Chris keeps himself updated with what’s happening in the world!

Q9: 17 words explaining your role and what is takes to do it.

A: This is one that catches people out, isn’t it? To-help-the-company-excel-and-produce-great-work-for-the-audiences-who-love-what-we-do.

Q10: If you could be any dancer in any work ever done by Candoco, who would you be?

A: I think the piece I would like to have been in would have been Set and Reset/Reset, because I have huge admiration for what Trisha Brown has achieved as a choreographer and shaper of dance.

Q11: What is your favourite season?

A: I used to think it was autumn but I think it’s spring now.

Q12: What did you enjoy doing the most this week?

A: I had a little bit of time off, so being with my family. And the snow.

Q13: What are three things people remember you for?

A: I think people remember for my spikey hair… But seriously, working hard, believing in artists and solving problems.

Q14: Christmas or your birthday?

A: Christmas.

Q15: Dancing at a ball or dancing the night away?

A: Dancing the night away.

Q16: Who do you work with the most at the office?

A: I think that would be Anne, as assistant producer, and Ben and Charlotte and Artistic Co-Directors.

Q17: Can you speak any other languages?

A: I’m rubbish at languages, I always have been. My German teacher told me she never wanted to teach me again. I wasn’t allowed to do A-Level German, so, no, I’m dreadful. At school, I got downgraded year by year in the French class. By the end of my studies, I was in what was called the French studies group where rather than learning French, you learnt about France because your language abilities were so bad. So, I am ashamedly a monoglot. -Maybe you can take Latin when you retire, although it is a dead language… Well, thanks for that, I guess…

That’s it for this time, I hope all of you fellow Candocans are enjoying the taste of spring we’ve had after all the snow, rain and wind we’ve had recently!

Flo x