Project: the brick pit
Year the project commenced: 2006
Year it became impossible: 2007
A site specific physical theatre work over a toxic algae filled body of water; using a structure that was not suitable for rigging aerials and of very limited audience capacity; and focusing on the endangered Green and Golden Bell Frog which would likely be placed in further danger by a summer evening audience disrupting their peak breeding time. What could possibly go wrong?
Despite the barriers Sydney Olympic Park Authority (SOPA) had approached Legs on the Wall and some funds had been allocated. So Simone O’Brien, who was then artistic associate at Legs, put together a team of creative, production and technical personnel to explore the options and develope concepts and ideas to incorporate the multiple histories of the site – geographical, Indigenous, industrial & post industrial - with its current usage, as a host to a unique architectural ring bridge structure and home to the endangered frog.
They explored placing a tightwire across the architectural ring (too much tension across a great width), inflatable large plastic balls on the water for frog eggs (too much toxic algae), aerialists swinging through the air as teenage frogs, projections on the cliffs of the brick pit showing the homes of Sydney made of the bricks from the pit. Simone joined the FATS - the Frog and Tadpole Society of NSW, (fats.org.au); and the musician Paul Kelly suggested Clarence 'Frogman' Henry's 'Ain't Got a Home' an appropriate song for an endangered frog.
In March 2007, Simone pitched a presentation with associated budget to executive representatives from SOPA and Sydney Festival with a schedule that indicated performances for Sydney Festival in early March 2009. The budget exceeded $1.25 million. We are still waiting for feedback.
Collaborators: Legs on the Wall - employer, Sydney Olympic Park Authority - commissioning body, Alexandra Gillespie - visual/media artist, Carl Polke - sound design, lighting and projection - Sydney Bouhaniche, costume designer - Imogen Ross, production manager - Kent Johnston, riggers - Mark le Cornu & Sebastian Dickens. live music component – Nick Wales from CODA.