Thursday, 16 February 2012

Day Two - Archives

One of the volunteers really kindly showed me the theatre archive and spent much of her morning answering my questions and finding me so many interesting documents, from the text of the plays first performed in the theatre, to playbills, postcards, posters and press cuttings. There are so many hidden gems in the scrapbooks kept of performances; all sorts of fascinating sidelines on the theatre. A huge range of possibilities for projects; part of what I'm doing is finding a starting point - its a sort of focussing into a small vein of something to explore and its very easy to get distracted by all sorts of interesting ephemera (postcards and letters from Graham Chapman, John Cleese etc. when they performed at the theatre with their Cambridge Circus review in the sixties for example). What I primarily wanted to look at was the playbills and I found quite a few interesting examples. Visually (to me at any rate) they are so attractive with their mishmash of different styles and I love the emphasis on points of interest that is achieved by the use of a range of typefaces.
Once you start looking for text, you find it everywhere. I always spot the written word - and a theatre is full of words.