TAA Report

Saturday night at Temporary Autonomous Arts was a fantastic adventure. The reclaimed space was a closed down primary school. From Wednesday people had been turning up to add their paintings, arts, installations, posters and flyers to the buildings. Creating rooms of sound, bongos, red lights and yummy vegan chillie! By the time The Spokes arrived on Saturday evening, the place was nothing short of a maze of wonderment! The performance room was the old assembly hall complete with a climbing frame for us to play on. Backstage was the canteen where we had a quick run-though and created a cameo role for new Spoke Lauren. It’s a shame other newbie Tamara couldn’t make it so we could show off our EIGHT Spokes!!! We’re getting very close to becoming a complete wheel!

Our performance was part of TAA’s cabaret, re-named cabarave! Due to technical problems, the show was starting late so a lady volunteered for some nude life modelling. Anyone from the audience was invited to take up some pen and paper on the front and have a draw. Spokes Caz and Emily participated but unfortunately didn’t win the amazing sock monkey prize!
Up next was circus jam – showing off their hoola, poi, and staff skills. These guys have open workshops a few of us need to get involved with in the near future to perfect our skills.
And then, it was our turn to make our dramatic entrance actually through the crowd. And wow, the crowd were amazing! Quite possibly our most enthusiastic response yet, they loved it! I found it very difficult to be a serious zombie when I could see the front row cracking up with laughter! Such as amazing feeling.

One thing that made this show so different was dog participation. A few lose dogs were hanging around the space, and one decided to run into our performance and join in, especially with the fight. Most people enjoyed this and found it added to the humour. But for myself, a life-life sufferer of an extreme dog phobia, this made the show one of the most frightening things I have done in my life. I’m so proud of myself for keeping it together and not running off in tears.
A few months ago, after a Spokes Acro session, I had a very distressing encounter with a dog and an irresponsible owner. Luckily Becca was there to rescue me and control the situation. I kept this in my mind during Saturday’s trauma and felt like I could get through it knowing I was surrounded by women who would protect me. Another example of how The Spokes have liberated my life on quite a personal level.
Thankfully, I made it through the show without being mauled to death and felt I great sense of relief and accomplishment.
I am still quite upset at the owners of the dog for not realising the unnecessary hardship they cause other people. I understand that to most people a dog is a best friend and a member of the family who is deeply loved. For most people there that night, the dog added a fantastic positive aspect to the night. But I would like to remind any dog owners reading this that not everyone is as comfortable around dogs. For some of us, we will be having nightmares about this for a long time. If you could please think twice and keep your dog on a lead in crowds, I would be eternally thankful!

Sorry for turning this blog into a bit of a personal rant, I realise this is meant to be for Spokes news. I promise to keep the next entry more on topic. Thank you for reading.