As we inch ever closer to our “professional” debut on the 9th March 2017 at Axis Arts Centre, Crewe supporting Ridiculusmus; it seemed an opportune moment to look back at how far Myself, Jamie and of course Cabin Fever have come over the past couple of years. But! Before we charge back in time with all the all the ill-advised haste of a blindfolded man running a marathon, let’s look at the cold, hard facts of where we are post-graduation!
Anyway! Back to Cabin Fever! That’s what we’re here for isn’t it? Cabin Fever was formed on a cold St. Patrick’s Day night in 2015, out outside the White Horse pub in Nantwich, Cheshire. This decision to enter into a “duo” was, yes admittedly at the time was somewhat enabled by the “demon drink”. Or intoxicated minds however were not completely ill-informed. Oh no! Quite the contrary in fact! At that moment in time we were developing the piece “STRUKTUR” by “Got Balls” with the *insert superlatives here* Emili Harris and Meg Mundy. It was this work on “STUKTUR”, under the tutelage of Neil Mackenzie that the first embers of the Cabin Fever fire were ignited, a fire which saw us go on to work together on all but one of our subsequently remaining University performances.
So! After the decision was made to, in the nicest way possible of course, ditch the girls the real business could begin! The first performance under the name Cabin Fever, came in January 2016 as part of the Open Projects festival. The piece, “5 minutes, 20 seconds”. The initial idea actually came when we were secretly watching the World Championship Snooker in lecture (We’re sorry Jane). We thought “Why don’t we get a snooker table? Why Don’t we make a piece round that!” I’ll never forget the excitement Jamie and I felt when we finally bought our very own Full Size Snooker Table! And what a bargain it was to! £206 from a former body builder called Shaun who lived in Mansfield. But then… the realisation! We’ve just bought a 1.3 tonne FULL SIZE SNOOKER TABLE!!! And we haven’t got a F****** clue what the piece is going to be! Well… it can’t just be about snooker, that’s boring. And it can’t just be about us because WE’RE boring! In the end, thanks to a lot of hard work, the kind advice once again of Neil Mackenzie and the luck of discovering some brilliantly interwoven personal stories (that astounded even us) 5:20 made it! And my god are we proud of it!
As for the effect of “CTP”. We’ll without it we would never have met. Without it we wouldn’t have met the excellent fellow students and staff that caught us so, so much. Hardly a Cabin Fever rehearsal goes by without one of us “doing a Kevin”, a style of performance named after Reckless Sleeper and CTP lecturer Kevin Egan. “Doing a Kevin” is characterised by the dead-pan face, awkward body and panicked, trapped eyes saying “HELP ME!” quite simply, without CTP we wouldn’t have developed our voice and we wouldn’t have developed the support network that gives us the confidence to succeed.
But what about “Double-O” the piece we will be debuting at the Axis Arts Centre come 9th March? Well, without giving too much away, it is very much 5:20’s sister piece. It is full of humour and music, over spilling with Bond nostalgia and Midlands pride and ready to burst with faux-machismo and autobiography. I guess you’ll just have to come see it.
Thanks for reading and from Cabin Fever… HAVE A GOOD'UN!