We have a very productive few days at CVS in Ipswich trialing the World Factory game. Kate O’Connor documented all the activities in her blog:
Day 1: 13/02/15
METIS arrived at CSV, Ipswich, yesterday to set up in Courtroom 1 for workshops and trials of the World Factory game. We received a warm welcome, with staff and volunteers at the centre coming in to get an insight into the project. With new cards and an immense spidery map on the wall, the game is being tweaked, sharpened, and new stories added all the time. We’re looking forward to a visit from some CSV visitors tomorrow, to become our latest World Factory players!
Day 2: 14/02/15
Today the METIS team opened the doors of courtroom 1 to CSV visitors, for trials of the World Factory card game. Led by two performers dealing the cards and calling the shots, they split into four teams, each representing rival Chinese garment factories. The game began with a player shouting “Let’s make money!”, but concluded with a thoughtful, open discussion on the ethical consequences and potential alternatives to a globalised economy.
Through the afternoon the focus fell on the software which is mediating the game through a barcode system; discoveries about performer- audience interaction are constantly feeding into this development, so all elements evolve simultaneously.
Day 3: 15/02/14
Today CSV was full of groups from the Chinese community in Ipswich, who joined METIS for another test of the World Factory game. Our youngest audience yet turned out to be the most competitive from the outset, one player saying, “It’s not a competition, because we’re going to win.” Half an hour later the same team was telling us how the most important thing for them had been to respect and look after the workers in their factories.
Meanwhile it’s full steam ahead in the writing process, with big decisions on the storylines and audience experience being made all the time. The team are also slightly obsessed with a fantastic money-counting machine which is in the room at the moment.
Day 4 – 16/02/15
In our final day at CSV more members of the METIS team joined in Ipswich. We had writer, lighting designer and a new performer all there for one last trial with visitors to the centre. These teams became completely immersed in the factory landscape, juggling practicalities, ethics and finances. We also had visitors from the New Wolsey stopping by to become familiar with the show before it arrives on their stage in April. In looking at the model box, however, it’s clear that the World Factory stage will not just be for performers, but audience too!
We’ve had a great time this week, and are hugely grateful to the team at CSV for allowing us to take-over Court Room 1, and introducing us to all the great workshop participants.