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Pinchbeck, M., Baynton, R., 2021.

Igniting response-ability: Co-creating one-on-one audience experience

Output Type:Chapter in a book
Publication:Routledge Companion to Audiences and the Performing Arts (2020)
Publisher:Routledge

A bench with a plaque reading Sit with us for a moment and remember is placed in a public space. It is both a dedication to a loved one and an invitation to a stranger. An audience member sits on the bench and a one-on-one performance takes place.

In 2018, The Lincoln Company, produced by Baynton, presented Sit with us... at the Edinburgh Fringe where it was performed over 100 times. The piece, written by Pinchbeck, has toured internationally and taps into commemoration, memory and loss. In this short, Baynton and Pinchbeck discuss the process of co-creating an ensemble performance that enables audience and performer to engage in 'A brief encounter that is both sweet and sorrowful' (The Guardian).

Baynton and Pinchbeck address the ethics involved in 'staging' site-specific one-on-one performance in a public space, with reference to Pinchbeck's The Long and Winding Road (2004-2009). At the same time, they ask how one-on-one performances, and Sit with us... in particular, activate a space in which performer and audience member can co-create an experience. The short builds on Zerihan's assertion that one-on-one performance 'ignites response-ability in its audience' (Zerihan, 2008).