Guest Blogger Christopher Green writes of his recent collaboration with Entelechy’s Elders Company for their latest 21st Century Tea Dance
I love the difference between expectation and the reality. I think I’ve got a pretty good imagination but when things turn out well they always vastly surpass what I was expecting. So, if you’d asked me what a good result of working with the Entelechy Elders Company would look like, I never would have imagined encouraging older people to wrestle.
Which is because, of course, we came up with that together. The same is true of singing a showbiz song about New Cross and Deptford, and telling the stories of the trip to Bradford. I think my life has been a gradual process of learning to enjoy things being not perfect. That’s just as true on stage. I used to want to script every word, hit every note perfectly. But perfection is not necessarily communication. I’ve come to realise that communication is at the heart of everything. So it was a delight to spend time with the elders company and encourage them not to worry about exactly where to stand or the exact right word. And even more delightful to see them entertaining the crowd at the T-Dance with their joyful personalities and edgy, vibrant stories. For me, it both reinforced my beliefs and wholeheartedly encouraged me to push further.
I learnt a lot from the group about trusting the robustness of friendships. When asked in our first meeting what I thought of the group – in a typically direct fashion – I replied that I was shocked by how much they argued. I came to see that it came not from cussedness, but from an understanding of each other, and a belief that the status quo wouldn’t be rocked by a little honesty. It’s made me a little more direct in my dealings. I’m not proposing to wrestle my way through creative differences but I might stand my ground a little firmer with those I respect. There are worse things than a few seconds of argy bargy. If it makes for clearer ongoing communication then I’m all for it.
These are not the things I would have expected to get from the group. They are all the better for being unexpected.