"Science is culture"

Donna Haraway



An embodied PERFORMANCE lecture by Anna Furse and the Athletes of the Heart Laboratory

George Wood Theatre, Goldsmiths, Department of Drama on Monday the 11th of October, 6:15 and Stratford Circus Experimental Weekend, Sunday 17th October, 7:30.

Being Touched

This event expresses research with the Athletes of the Heart Laboratory (a company of graduates from the MA in Performance Making) into the senses and memory.

The Laboratory is now an energetic ensemble of 14 international dance/theatre makers working alongside the production company in specific research projects.

BEING TOUCHED will be a highly physical evening, its illustrated text adapted from Anna Furse's soon to be published chapter on the ethics of touch in training in the new book A Life of Ethics and Performance, edited by John Matthews.

Sick of Love
Sick of Love
Sick of Love
Sick of Love
Sick of Love
Sick of Love
Sick of Love
Sick of Love
Sick of Love
Sick of Love


Research and Development for Incubate and Work-in-Progress Performances for Suspense Festival, Little Angel Theatre Autumn 2009

So it is a lover who speaks and says: …….. what echoes in me is what I learn with my body.
Roland Barthes A Lover’s Discourse

SICK OF LOVE explores erotic love and the evocative power of the material via live animation of objects, text and flesh, extending Furse’s ongoing research into the body-in-performance.

SICK OF LOVE is performed with the full presence of the animators in view. Sat around a huge bed, the audience become intimately close to the action, choosing their own ‘close-ups’. The work-in-progress is the first Etude on presence to come from the Laboratory, this one specifically exploring how the performer can channel the spectator’s attention to materiality and to the unfolding actions and images created. The performer is, like the puppeteer, saying ‘look at this’ not ‘look at me’, a way of playing that requires detailed focus and highly controlled physicality.

SICK OF LOVE launches the Athletes Laboratory – an ongoing research laboratory based in the Pinter Centre for Performance and Creative Writing at Goldsmiths, working with a group of graduates from the MA in Performance Making that Anna Furse directs.

Direction/Scenography - Anna Furse
Laboratory Performers - André Amálio, Tereza Havlickova, Alex Crowe, Dafne Louzioti, Vanio Papadelli, Borja Sagasti, Bruno Humberto Sound Composition - James Bulley Lighting - Mischa Twitchin Sick of Love
Sick of LoveSick of Love
Photo credits Jonathan May

Sick of Love
Don Juan. Who?
Don Juan. Who?
Don Juan. Who?
Don Juan. Who?
Don Juan. Who?
Don Juan. Who?
Don Juan. Who?
Don Juan. Who?
Don Juan. Who?

ANNA FURSE Athletes of the Heart (UK)
in co-production with
Mladinsko Theatre, Ljubljana (Slovenia)


from cyber space to theatre space

View slideshow

Honorary Patron: Elaine Showalter

As libertine, seducer, and seditionist, Don Juan has always been a leading man in our legends of love and infidelity. Anna Furse updates the myth in a daring 21st-century addition to the theatre of Don Juan.
Elaine Showalter, Professor Emerita of English, Princeton University

UK Premiere FeEast Logo
Athletes of the Heart logo Mladinsko Theatre logo

This international company worked in a private ‘cyber studio’ for 18 months. Confessions of darkest dreams and desires then gave rise to a haunting work that pulsates with passionate physicality, bittersweet irony, 1000 feather pillows, a drag king and a man who cries at too much beauty. DON JUAN.WHO? is about men and women and why we still fight. It’s about seduction, love, sex, power, and the Man who never stays for breakfast. With over sixty million three hundred thousand web hits in his name, how come Don Juan still grips us?

directed by Anna Furse

with Damjana Černe, Željko Hrs, Mare Mlačnik, Tanya Myers, Matej Recer, Giovanna Rogante, Marie-Gabrielle Rotie

A poetic, complex, simple, intelligently directed performance, bounding in eroticism and desire… Don Juan. Who? is a unique piece.
Marjana Ravnjak TV SLOVENIA

Complex, complicated, and totally simple at the same time…very sincere, full of passion and love...fascinating….More performances of this kind!
Amelia Kraigher VECER, Slovenia

An unusual, provocative performance that both avoids and employs cliches.
Gregor Butala DNEVNIK, Slovenia

The performance is even more provocative when it ventures into existential, erotic, sexual extremes….a kind of melancholic aura..a kind of transcendental dimension..reaches beyond the known, the verified and the expected.
Blaz Lukan DELO, Slovenia

Following sell-out performances at Mladinsko Theatre, Ljubljana and previews at the Shunt Vaults, the production is at Riverside Studios for 4 performances only as part of FeEast Festival 2008.

Booking information: www.riversidestudios.co.uk


Video clip | More images

You can blog the project's themes and provocations on:

This show contains nudity and strong language. Not suitable for under 14 year olds

riverside studios logo

Studio 2

Friday 21st 8pm / Saturday 22nd 4pm & 8pm / Sunday 23rd 6pm
Ticket prices £16 / £13 concs / £10 full time students/ £9 groups of 10+
Post Show Talk: Saturday 22nd November


Professional workshop Riverside Studios Sunday 23rd November 1 – 4pm bookings: anna.athletes@googlemail.com

There is also an opportunity to experiment in the Cyber Studio in a creative/critical writing project. Contact Anna Furse if interested at the above.

Interview Video Stills

(new page opens to Theatreland TV website)


glass body


This provocative event slips between testimony and reflection, emotion and medicine, flesh and technology to contemplate our abiding fascination with what lies under our skin.

In today’s culture the screen replaces touch and the naked eye. When it comes to our insides becoming digital spectacles, how do we feel about the sheer thrill of becoming transparent? Scientific and artistic portrayals of the human body overlap throughout anatomical history, with knife, brush and hands all shaping images from dissected corpses. With the invention of the X-ray, for the first time in human history, we could see into the living body.

GLASS BODY plunges the spectator into the depths of obstetrics ultrasound technology to provoke questions about our interior visibility as a lived experience.

Physical transparency is a key issue in this beautifully assembled and gently suggestive blend of live performance (by Marie Gabrielle Rotie), poetic text, sound and image inspired by its creator Anna Furse’ experience of ultrasound technology. Less than half an hour long, it’s a small, thoughtful gem of medical, cultural and artistic enquiries

Probing and intelligent, and the intimacy of the experience creates a dreamy spell that gets under your skin so that long after it has finished you have a heightened awareness of your own body

The overlapping of art and science worked well….throws up all sort of disturbing tangents

Rotie's silent and enigmatic performance presence is beautifully played; the interplay of screen images (flying birds, babes-in-the-womb, X-rayed limbs, playing children) and live actions (the laying out of a set of child's clothes, the pulling of a string of DNA-like beads from the mouth, the ritual washing and cleansing) are lovely images that work in harmony

GLASS BODY’s two week residency in the Chelsea and Westminster Hospital was a resounding success.……The research for the performance was meticulous, with the balance of emotional response and technical information clearly structured so as not to baffle the audience

A wonderful piece of performance art, that represented the emotions we see on a daily basis

GLASS BODY Website - opens in new browser

TIME OUT Preview London March 8-15 2006

Other Sci-Art Projects


My Glass Body by Anna Furse with sound composition by Graeme Miller (BBC Radio 3 "The Wire") and produced by Karen Rose, Sweet Talk Productions. It was broadcast in May 2007.

Honest, searching writing and inventive, insistent sound

Anna Furse’s evocation of the wide-ranging emotional ride embarked upon by a woman seeking fertility treatment really is a haunting mix of modern medical sounds with poignant, poetical and deeply personal language

BBC Radio 3

GLASS BODY FRAGMENTS – a video/digital installation, was commissioned by THE BERNIE GRANT ARTS CENTRE for The Gathering , March 2008

Glass Body

In collaboration with

Lucy Cash video
Graeme Miller audio
Marie-Gabrielle Rotie performance
Hansjorg Schmidt lighting
Agnes Treplin design




This performance project explored infertility and Assisted Reproduction Technologies (A.R.T) across the gender, sexuality, ethnic and reproductive experiences within the company. The production blended physical theatre and video projection both documentary and cutting-edge bio-medical material such as 3D/4D ultrasound imagery.

The title of the piece comes from the Spanish writer Federico Garcia Lorca's play YERMA (meaning ‘barren') about a desperately childless peasant girl in 1920's pro-natalist Spain. Premiered at Riverside Studios in London and the Explore@Bristol science venue in May/June 2003. It was funded by an Impact Award from The Wellcome Trust. Ancillary activities included bio-ethical debates and workshops in schools and colleges as well as the publication of an Education Pack.

Download PDF of Education Pack

See also: The Art of A.R.T. in the online journal: Vol 6 (2203) AnyBody 's Concerns.

The Company:

Joy Elias Rilwan, Shobu Kapoor, Anthony Newell, Giovanna Rogante, Helen Spackman, Carlos Vesga
Ruari Cormack,
Steven Hopkins, Ajaykumar, Agnes Treplin, Sylvia Hallett


An ongoing cultural project on infertility awareness ­ seeking ways in which as an artist I might engage the public with the transformative potential of Reproductive Technologies (A.R.T) and how they urge us to re-consider ourselves biologically, socially, spiritually and ethically. Myself the mother of a child born from I.V.F. and author of the book Your Essential Infertility Companion (Thorsons Harper Collins 1996,2000) I am working from embodied experiences, using my factual research as the background for creative explorations of different interconnected themes. I aim to get under the skin of the subject matter and confront material emotionally, viscerally and poetically, so that the spectator might identify with the infertile perspective ­ a rare opportunity in these days of media sensationalism...




Written and directed with financial support from an Arts Council Award for the Little Angel Theatre, Japan Festival 2000/National Children's Theatre Festival UK 2000. Multi media puppetry show for children based on the ancient infertility folk tale Momotaro.

In 2007/8, this play has been selected by the National Theatre for its Connections Programme.
See www.ntconnections.org.uk.




Commissioned by Theatre Centre, this monodrama explores eating disorders and body image via a monologue in which Alice, a 15-year-old from the 19th century, travels in time as well as through her own body. As Alice shape-shifts through 100 years of culture, she becomes disordered by the pressures on a young girls' psyche. The original production toured the UK and to Malaysia and the Philippines for the British Council. A US production is in repertory at the New Conservatory Theater in San Francisco. It is currently being translated into Hebrew with a view to production in Israel.

Published by Aurora Metro: Theatre Centre Plays Volume 1 2003.




Time Out Award winning play/production on the celebrated hysteric patient of Jean Martin Charcot at the Salpetriere Hospital in Paris. Freud studied with Charcot and observed his famous and spectacular public performance-lectures on ‘grande hysterie' attended by artists and intellectuals as well as medics. He subsequently returned to Vienna to launch his own practice of hypnosis and ‘ talking therapy ‘ which evolved into psychoanalysis.

Designed by Sally Jacobs and with music composed by Graeme Miller, this work toured the UK and Russia. It has been translated into Czech and staged in the Czech Republic, Canada, Denmark and the USA. A short version was adapted for the Television Documentary ARE WOMEN MAD? Channel 4 1994.

This is fresh, exciting and heart-breaking drama. Be tempted. This is an evening which speaks to us of ourselves
The Financial Times

In this poetic and powerful drama, we see the hysterical woman, the male voyeur, the male listener ­ a triangle that would become paradigmatic in the psychiatric history of women…..an innovative performance that is also a critique of the psychoanalytic appropriation of women
Elaine Showalter: Foreword to AUGUSTINE (BIG HYSTERIA) Published by Harwood Academic 1997

See also: A Spectacle of Suffering, The Visual Narrative Matrix, Southampton Institute 2000