Life is Short and Long

20. 06. 2016

Life is Short and Long – Now & the beginning

SS emm at markets

The picture is of me at the Wirrabara farmers markets, a rightly proud event in the calander of the town, run by the local progress society. The Life is Short and Long team were there to have a presence, tell some stories, hear some stories, and generally field all comments, questions and ideas on Wirrabara, crisis and change.

The a-frame sign we had attempts to explain it all: “Hello, we are making a theatre show about Wirrabara, Barcelona & Port Adelaide. We have objects from each of these places that tell a story. Come, look & listen over a cuppa.”

Most people walked by and laughed. Barcelona? And Wirrabara? AND Spain? What the heck do they have in common? The first woman I told the day before on our guided tour of the hall, who was cooking pizza’s to sell at the markets, laughed out loud and said “Really? Really? But why? Hang on, hang on, I’ve got to find a song about this…”, she said, reaching for her ipod. We never got to the song, distracted by conversation, but it was this comment that repeated itself.

As I write the above, I’ll pause for a moment to talk about my connection with Wirrabara. 3 years ago, I wanted to go on a holiday. A SA holiday. For a month. In the mid north. No real reasons other than to have a look at inexpensive property’s and have very little to do. I looked on line, saw a town that had a craft shop with a place for rent upstairs, contacted the agent, and off I went. It was in Wirrabara, and I’d never really heard of the town. As I rolled through the mainstreet in my car, most of the shops closed and reinvented as residential homes, not all well loved, a faded mural, a good looking pub and flowers down he mediam strip, I wondered what on earth I would actually do here. After two days of being there, I had an invitation for tea at a local house down the road. Two weeks later I was so busy with things to do, people to meet and walks to walk that my life felt as full as ever. Except the glorious still ness and cold ness of the night times. But the town hadn’t changed, of course, just my relationship with it and the people.

And it made me think how this town reminds me of so many other towns, with so much more than meets the eye, but also clinging to life, which is where Barcelona, Spain comes in. But that’s another story to come.

Building Forest

Emma Beech

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Friday 28th & Saturday 29th October


Artist Residency


Emma Beech


Wirrabara Institute, Main North Road, Wirrabara

About the Company

Emma Beech

Emma started making shows for her mum in her bedroom when she was 6, and won the local Rotary Public Speaking competition when she was 13. She ran off to the big smoke from her small town to train as an acrtess, but found the allure of telling her own stories in a multitude of different ways too alluring. So she headed to Denmark to learn about installation theatre techniques. She came back two years later ready to make and create. Emma has been involved in several processes and productions that have a community focused agenda, and has been a workshop leader for emerging arts companies such as Riverland Youth Theatre, Urban Myth Theatre, PYT (Sydney) & Courthouse Arts. Emma has also taught acting at a tertiary level at The Animation Workshop in Viborg, Denmark and Flinders University.

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Country Arts SA recognises and respects that we are living and creating on Aboriginal Lands and we are committed to working together to honour their living cultures.