It’s crazy to think back to when I was applying for BOOM in February 2018 and consider all that has happened in that time. It has been such a mighty twenty months since then that I can’t actually think where I would be now if it weren’t for BOOM and the support of Jo and Vic.

I wrote my application whilst working with Musicians Without Borders in Palestine and I wanted to look deeper into how trauma affects your sense of time and space. I’m not going to lie, going deep into your emotions whilst continuing to work in conflict and post-conflict zones isn’t easy and at times I really wasn’t sure if it was even wise, but Jo was a constant and was there to listen to what I was dealing with, the tangents  my ideas were going off on and always encouraged me to let them go where they needed to. She never showed any sign of urgency, which allowed me some stillness while my ideas came together, and  during a very crazy year professionally this space became an incredible support, both artistically and personally.

I spent the year learning how to use Ableton, getting into first Jitter and then VDMX, buying and mucking about with projectors, getting an introduction to welding (some of the best 90 minutes of my life) and learning how to use Adobe After Effects, and speaking to the other BOOM artists, who I now consider friends.

We were offered a couple of performance opportunities should we want to show our work, and when I said yes to the Ideas Festival in October, Vic took the role of producer and showed immense patience while I scrabbled to make it all work. Never at any point was there a sense of pressure, that I was representing OCM: it was just a chance to perform my work and also for it to be shown as a work in progress. Again, the support has been immense, whilst I made the transition from collaborator to solo artist.

What have I gained from BOOM?  Jo and Vic’s patience has taught me to be more patient with myself.  I have a solo show under my belt and this has lead to another residency (albeit a shorter one) with Surge to work closely with a director.  The solo show forced me to plunge headlong into my own trauma and experience of the world and to express it in a way that was on one hand deeply considered and on the other completely raw, which became a kind of art therapy in itself. I’m now far more tech-savvy, which has opened up new possibilities in my work, exposing me to different approaches and opportunities. I have made new friends in the other BOOMers, Kathy, Sam, Harriet, Esther, and Eleanor; all equally creative and brilliant in completely different ways.

I think the sheer fact of being treated with such respect as an artist was in itself a real game-changer. 

I really can’t overstate how profound this year has been. I can’t thank OCM enough!