performingborders (Alessandra Cianetti):Xavier, last year I saw two versions of your piece POST. One in June at the Camden People’s Theatre as part of ‘Before the Referendum’ event and one in December at OvalHouse. Between the two shows, the Brexit referendum happened. Blending countries’ histories and personal journeys, POST addresses the ‘shifting political and geographical landscape’ of a Europe in constant change. How have you seen the piece developing also in its coming 2017 iterations alongside the political decisions that are affecting you both as a person and as an artist?
Xavier De Sousa:
performingborders (Alessandra): Thank you! This brings us to the second question. In POST, you refer to Portugal’s colonial past bringing into the conversation your family history and the word ‘returned’. Can you tell us a bit more about the historical and personal meaning of this word?
performingborders (Alessandra): You are both an artist and producer who has been living in the UK for quite a while working on amazing projects all over the country and internationally. These days looking at the future clearly seems much more difficult though – I am wondering, as an art professional, where do you see the current socio-political landscape leading? What impact will it have on your work?
Xavier de Sousa is an independent performance maker and producer. Having grown up with Europe’s oldest performance art festival, CITEMOR (Portugal), he has been working solidly in theatre, dance and live art since graduating from Kingston University in 2010.
As a performance maker, he has developed multi-disciplinary character Almost Xav (Latitude Festival, King’s Head Theatre, Southbank Centre, Traumfrau), developed his first theatre show POST with Ovalhouse Theatre, Marlborough Theatre and BikeShed Theatre, and is currently developing a new piece with the Barbican. He has collaborated with and performed in shows by Needless Alley Collective, Rosana Cade, The Famous Lauren Barri-Holstein, Johanna Linsley, Tino Sighal, Richard DeDomenichi and Tim Etchells amongst others. Alongside his performance practice, and through his company Ideal Foreigner Productions, he currently produces the work of live artists jamie lewis hadley and Nicola Hunter, as well as CUT Festival. He also is the producer for performance and theatre company Chris Goode & Co. and runs Producer Gathering, a public-facing and not for profit network of producers in the UK, with independent producer and partner in crime, Sally Rose.
Previous producing experience include Forest Fringe, 2 Degrees Festival, Louise Orwin, Ellie Stamp, Laura Burns, CUT Festival, and choreographers Sivan Rubinstein (Israel) and Evangelia Kolyra (Greece), amongst others. Throughout his career, he has often worked with Latitude Festival, Tate Modern, Vogue Fabrics, Southbank Centre, Whitechapel Gallery, The Yard Theatre, CITEMOR (Portugal), Operastate Festival (Italy), Onassis Culture Centre (Athens), Kalamata Dance Festival (Greece), Old Vic Tunnels, Camden People’s Theatre and ]performance space[, amongst others. www.xavierdesousa.co.uk