Spirited was ExploreTheArch’s first project inspired by medieval literature. The writing of twelfth-century adventure author Dame Marie, also known as Marie de France, inspired an experiential theatre production exploring unconventional protagonists — a youth uninterested in love and exploring gender identity, a woman who says something she regrets and a successful professional who's a closet werewolf three days a week.
In the production these characters, who push boundaries to honour their unconventional selves, are viewed through window frames and doorways until the stories leap out and scurry the audience to the next viewing point. Located in the margins, the characters are recognising their value in their difference to the majority.
Spirited was developed in the summer of 2021 and can be booked for performance in its original format where twenty first-century viewers exploring the twelfth-century adventure writer’s narratives in three groups, dwelling at performance portals for 15 - 20 minutes before adventuring on to the next.
Marie de France is considered England’s earliest female adventure writer and many of her short stories contain epic journeys.
Images by Alexander Brattell and Ian O'Leary