No Hands is a physical theatre performance devised by the CreateA Ensemble. It is based on an original short story called The Diver by Isak Dinesen published in 1958. It was created under the direction of Sam Thomas and Kate Stones with original music created by Eliza Hull. No Hands premiered at the 2017 Castlemaine State Festival, and was performed at The Ullumbarra Theatre in Bendigo and The Cube in Wodonga in 2018.
In 2016 an eight metre high statue of Marilyn Monroe was temporarily installed in the middle of Bendigo. The iconic image of Marilyn, with her white skirt billowing around her legs was the focal point of the city’s landscape for a number of months. In the same year Bendigo became a focus for people anxious about a new Mosque that was being proposed. The issue spilled from council sessions to street protests and drew in people from further afield who were eager to exploit the situation.
Both of these things speak about our dreams and aspirations – our hopes. But hopes may easily be manipulated. Advertising and popular culture direct us to ready-made aspirations. Lobbyists and activists direct us to already constructed truths.
Are there other ways to be in the world?
The Diver tells the story of a young man obsessed with the flight of birds and the possibility of reaching and communicating with angles. After his encounters with someone he initially believes to be an angel he suffers disillusion and despair. Over many years he undergoes a profound transformation and shares his insights into a world that has taught him other ways of valuing the experience of being alive.
No Hands is a poetic reimagining of this story using gesture, movement, speech, sound, music, light and visual imagery.