By Emily-Louise More
As Part of my BA Honours Degree (Drama and Dance) I was asked to reach out to a company of my choice as part of my ‘Applied Theatre’ module to do a work placement involving the type of theatre I am interested in.
Bijli stood out to me because of their focus on social change, and Mariem has been nothing but enthusiastic and open to helping me gain the most out of this exciting journey. Their push to see diversity fully realised in Scottish theatre, reinforced that this is the type of theatre I want to be involved in.
Bijli invited me to sit in on different production meetings based on upcoming work where I was able to see what their processes are, and how they work creatively with many different artists. Mariem encouraged me to share my opinions and past experiences during the meetings, which helped me develop as a training student who is new to the industry. Not only did my confidence increase in terms of presenting myself, my mindset around socially engaged work grew stronger and made me eager to get involved in delivering these powerful stories/experiences/issues through creative work.
Something I quickly realised during my time with Bijli and working with Mariem, was the care and energy that was shown, from my initial contact with the company, through to the last evaluative/reflection meeting. I truly feel I have developed as a young artist through this experience, because I was encouraged to put across my ideas and use my voice to be part of these important discussions.
Throughout my placement I saw the different ways artists and producers work and create together, which made me reflect on the way I have dealt with certain things while working on productions in the past. It gave me a creative insight into where I could go next.