Particularly in the Heartland

The Team2009

Battersea Arts Centre

Battersea Arts Centre
London, United Kingdom

I was a trainee producer in 2006 and The TEAM were a new American company who we had just seen in Edinburgh. They came for a two week residency to work on “Heartlands” after presenting a one woman show with us called “Give Up Start Over”. We didn’t have bedrooms then so they were staying on the floor of BAC staff all over London. The company had so much energy but it was risky as we didn’t really know them or the work yet. I knew they wanted to explore what it was to be American and that they were all pretty impressive performers.I will never ever forget the scratch of “Particularly in the Heartland” though. It happened in Studio One (now the Bees Knees) and without wanting to over egg it - that night totally blew apart for me what scratch and theatre could be. “Heartlands” was this huge over long glorious mess of ideas, music, theatre, love, hope, notions of home, of family, of a country failing to see outside itself, of the American Dream, - and they had used this scratch to just put it all out there -put it all on the table, warts and all. It looked at the personal and political and it used song/text/dance/visceral movement/mess and the Wizard of Oz. It had too many ideas in it and lots of it went over my head but I found it totally exhilarating. Months later and they had worked and honed the show but still managed to retain the visceral, heart stopping quality that shines throughout all their work. It went on to become a smash hit in Edinburgh, win awards and run with us and tour both in the UK and US. Nearly 10 years later and The TEAM are for me one of the most important companies making work today, and I know that scratch remains at the heart of their process.


  • Title: Particularly in the Heartland
  • Creator: The Team
  • Date Created: 2009

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