Where You Are

Ad Infinitum in association with HOME presents:
free online mini-festival of short films, podcasts, Q&As, talks and discussions exploring themes of freedom, transition, resistance and care
Features new works from two Deaf collaborators
A new podcast explores the elderly care system through personal stories and interviews with relatives
29th October to 1st November

“A stylised and surreal world of black comedy, gothic horror and fantasy” ★★★★ Guardian on Ad Infinitum’s A Small Gathering

@TheatreAdInf | #WhereYouAreFest | ad-infinitum.org

Exploring themes of freedom, resistance, transformation and care, theatre company Ad Infinitum have created their first mini-festival featuring the premieres of short films from Deaf artists Matthew Gurney and David Ellington alongside shows from their portfolio, and talks, podcasts and Q&As. The online festival is happening wherever you are, and all completely free.

Ad Infinitum was commissioned by HOME as part of the first wave of Homemakers commissions in March, resulting in their first ever film A Small Gathering.The film will be shown for free for the first time in a watch party as part of the festival, and together Ad Infinitum and HOME have extended this invitation to create and share new work to an incredible array of artists and academics. These include three collaborators on Ad Infinitum’s Extraordinary Wall [of Silence]: Matthew Gurney, David Ellington and Dr Paddy Ladd.

Bristol-based David Ellington’s Libertyis a poignant and political BSL poem told in a new highly-visual, poetic and physically realised short film. This filmic poem draws on visual vernacular and BSL to examine what sets us apart, and what unites us. Matthew Gurney’s film Dr Voxoff’s Sign Language School for Hearing Children has reimagined the world as one where hearing people are in the minority. This dark, acerbic and witty dystopian film draws on experimental theatre and film making, and  takes inspiration from the Silent Movie genre. In In Search of Deafhood, award-winning author and activist Dr Paddy Ladd shares his investigation of Deaf Culture, history and sign language, examining why it is still under threat, and crucially, how it can benefit humanity at large.

Ad Infinitum will also be premiering three-part podcast Home From Home: Journeys Into Elderly Care and brand new zine which features interviews and personal stories of experiences of the elderly care system. The interviews from up and down the UK feature those whose relatives have experienced care and those working in the care system to paint a picture of how it works – and where it doesn’t work. These interviews conducted by co-artistic director Nir Paldi have been transformed into a listening experience by composer, performer and podcast maker Jennifer Bell, and the zine created by visual artist Naomi Gennery.

From their portfolio, Ad Infinitum are making available their resources from Extraordinary Wall [of Silence], their show charting the history of D/deaf oppression. The extensive resources include books, videos, articles, papers and much more, the sum of all their research into the fascinating and painful history explored in the show. Their show No Kidswill also feature with a reading from across the pond by Philadelphia’s Inis Nua Theatre Company, and a Q&A with Nir and George.

Nir and George said, “We decided to create a new festival. Something we’ve never done before. A festival that could happen no matter what; a digital festival that has content you can enjoy for free, wherever you are; a festival that embraces the precarious situation we all find ourselves in for the foreseeable future. What we’re presenting is, approximately, where we are right now, as a company, as artists and freelancers, producers, general managers, interpreters… this is where we are at. While this space we’re building can be quite discombobulating for all it’s newness, it’s also strangely invigorating, inspiring, and it gives us hope.”

Ad Infinitum is an international ensemble based in Bristol, developing new and original theatre. Founded in 2007, Ad Infinitum is led by Co-Artistic Directors, Nir Paldi and George Mann. They create shape-shifting socio-political theatre to provoke, move and inspire through innovative storytelling and bold experimental styles. Ad Infinitum’s theatre draws upon the power of the body, engages audiences with urgent issues, and ignites passionate debate. Previous shows include No Kids, Translunar Paradise, Odyssey, Bucket List, Light, and Ballad of the Burning Star. Ad Infinitum is Associate Artist at Bristol Old Vic and The North Wall. They are Associate Artist Alumni at the Bush Theatre (2011-2013), The Lowry (2011-2017) and Redbridge Drama Centre (2009-2017).Their work has won awards at the Edinburgh Fringe (including Spirit of the Fringe and multiple Stage Awards), across the UK (including the Argus Angel Award), and many awards internationally.

Listings information

29th October – 1st November

All content available from premiere until 1st November

FREE | ad-infinitum.org/where-you-are


Tues 20 Oct 2pm |  In Conversation with Ad Infinitum and David Ellington

Webinar with Ad Infinitum and filmmaker David Ellington

Join us on Tuesday 20th October from 2-3pm for a session with theatre company Ad Infinitum and filmmaker and artist David Ellington, hosted by HOME Manchester. Ad Infinitum are an award-winning theatre company who work with collaborators from all over the world and tour nationally and internationally. Ad Infinitum was commissioned by HOME as part of the first wave of Homemakers commissions in March, resulting in film A Small Gathering. With the support of Art Council England’s Emergency Response Fund we have now commissioned two long standing Ad Infinitum collaborators to create Homemakers works of their own. David’s commission, a short film of his visual poem Liberty will be shared as part of Ad Infinitum’s mini festival WHERE YOU ARE at the end of October. We will be discussing Ad Infinitum and David’s previous work, how they collaborated on 2019’s theatre piece Extraordinary Wall o̶f̶ ̶S̶i̶l̶e̶n̶c̶e̶ and the creative process of making digital work under lockdown.

Weds 28 Oct – Sat 31 Oct 11pm, Sun 1 Nov 6pm | No Kids

A reading of Ad Infinitum’s hit show by Philadelphia’s Inis Nua Theatre Company

Ad Infinitum’s play, No Kids, will be read online as part of Philadelphia’s Inis Nua Theatre Company Reading Season. No Kids was written by our co-artistic directors George and Nir, who have always found a way to balance their marriage with running a theatre company together. But as they consider becoming parents, the only way they know how to work through their hopes and fears is to make a play about it. Premiered in 2018 and toured around the UK and the world, we are excited to see what they make of this text.

Thurs 29 Oct, available from 7pm | Dr Voxoff’s Sign Language School for Hearing Children

A film by Matthew Gurney

Longtime Ad Infinitum collaborator Matthew Gurney brings us a dark, acerbic and witty dystopian vision of a world in which the roles are reversed – where hearing people are a minority. Playing all the characters and experimenting with the theatrical in film, Matthew’s work draws on the Silent Movie genre and probes at a disturbing history that’s much closer to home than many realise. Commissioned by Ad Infinitum and HOME.

Thurs 29 Oct, 8pm | In conversation: Matty Gurney & host (TBC)

Following the world premiere of director and actor Matthew Gurney’s short film ‘Dr Voxoff’s Sign Language School for Hearing Children’  in this event Matthew  will discuss the themes that inspired his film, the history behind it,  and how the oppression of sign language continues to impact Deaf lives to this day

Fri 30 Oct 2pm | Home From Home: Journeys into Elderly Care podcast premiere and brand new zine

In the last few months, as part of our lockdown activities, we’ve been gathering personal stories from people across the country of their experiences of the elderly care system in the UK. We have spent hours chatting with people whose elderly relatives have received care at home and/or lived in a care home, hearing from those that struggled with the system or found it helpful, and people who work in the system. With permission, we recorded the conversations and commissioned a podcast maker, Jennifer Bell, to turn them into a fantastic listening experience. We have also commissioned visual artist, Naomi Gennery, to create a response to the conversations to be shared online. We are super excited to be collaborating with these two brilliant artists in two completely different and new artforms for us as an organisation.

Fri 30 Oct, available from 7pm | Liberty

A film by David Ellington

“The cold, cold shudder / of a world craving / blood, blood, blood / Every day blood / Leeching my freedom / My freedom / I will fight / to save my freedom.” David Ellington brings to life his poignant and political BSL poem, Liberty, in a new highly-visual, poetic and physically realised short film commissioned by Ad Infinitum and HOME. This filmic poem draws on visual vernacular and BSL to examine what sets us apart, and what unites us. David has been collaborating with Ad Infinitum since 2016, we are delighted to be able to commission his artistic response to the situation we find ourselves in.

Sat 31 Oct, available from 2pm | In Search of Deafhood

A lecture film by Dr Paddy Ladd

“In order to appreciate why the concept of Deaf Culture is of such crucial importance … it’s necessary to understand the historical processes that have contributed to its present status.” – Dr Paddy Ladd. In his lecture In Search of Deafhood, award-winning author and activist Dr Paddy Ladd shares his investigation of Deaf Culture, history and sign language, examining why it is still under threat, and crucially, how it can benefit humanity at large. Told through the community’s own perspective, Dr Paddy Ladd discusses the concept of Deaf Culture and the contribution it’s made both to academic disciplines, and human lives in general.

Sat 31 Oct 3.45pm | In conversation: Dr Paddy Ladd

Join us in a conversation with award-winning author and activist, Dr Paddy Ladd, following the screening of his Lecture on Deaf culture, history and sign language. We’ll be asking Dr Ladd about his life as an activist fighting for Deaf rights, what led him to write his world-renowned book Understanding Deaf Culture: In Search of Deafhood and much, much more – there’ll also be time for you to ask questions too.

Sat 31 Oct, available from 7pm | A Small Gathering

A film by Ad Infinitum

Stuck in endless isolation where thoughts turn into visions of madness, three characters desperately seek ways of managing as days tick over. Ad Infinitum brings an assortment of darkly comic, twisted tales exploring solitude and the richness of our internal world in the face of a new reality.

★★★★ The Guardian “A stylised and surreal world of black comedy, gothic horror and fantasy”

Join the watch party of our first-ever free screening of A Small Gathering on Saturday 31st October at 7pm! Our short film will then be available to watch for free for the rest of the weekend.