EDEN – A beginning, the living world, the vitality of connection

CAVE – The work space, our home, the place where we dream

 

 

“The process of research, of excavating what makes us human, how we connect, to each other, to our stories and personal myths, how we express who we are, our vulnerability, our power, our truth, our freedom. That is at the heart of what we do.”

 

The Eden’s Cave Company was established in 2017 with the intention of creating powerful, imaginative and moving theatre experiences. It bridges connections between theatre, community and the natural world. Eden’s Cave is a laboratory theatre, developing a strong community philosophy which incorporates a European model of developing work over extended periods to create rich, layered and high-quality work.

 

Its projects seek to contribute to the development of British heritage, to advance new perceptions of how we relate to the natural world, develops opportunities for local communities and empowers the life and work of actors and artists, in an organised encounter of cultural exchange. In association with the ASHA Centre (ashacentre.org), The Eden’s Cave Company runs courses, events and performances to enrich communities nationally and locally in the Forest of Dean. 

 

HENRY MCGRATH

FOUNDER & CO-DIRECTOR

Henry is an acclaimed actor and theatre director with a lifelong interest in art as a vehicle of transformation.

 

He trained at RADA on the MA Theatre LAB. He was a principal performer at the internationally acclaimed Polish company, Song of the Goat theatre touring on all projects 2014-18. He played the title role of Hamlet in the company's celebrated production, Crazy God.

He has worked with Amit Lahav, director of Gecko Theatre, the BBC, Mechanimal and is Deputy Artistic Director at Animikii Theatre. He teaches acting and the embodied arts at drama schools and institutions across the country. 

Henry created Eden's Cave in 2016 along with Eleanor Buchan after returning from his work in Poland. Inspired by his work with Paul Oertel and Nancy Spanier and influenced by the Polish laboratory tradition, their intention is to create a unique cultural centre and company dedicated to exploring what makes theatre a unique form of expression in the world today. 

ELEANOR BUCHAN

CO-DIRECTOR

Eleanor Buchan is a performer focused on storytelling traditions and ritual practice. She has taught and performed in over twenty-nine countries, seeking out our oral mythic heritage and engaging in cross-cultural research-based practice.

Trained with Philippe Gaulier in Paris and at Central School of Speech and Drama , she has performed extensively with the award-winning 1927 and with acclaimed site-responsive company Dante Or Die. She is an Associate Artist of The Heroine Project Presents, the Authentic Artist Collective and collaborates with performative pop-up restaurant company Art For Eating, Twice Shy Theatre Company, composer Des O’Connor and playwright Lucy Kirkwood.

She is Co-Artistic Director at The Shadow Travellers, a storytelling company that researches the collective unconscious.

She leads workshops in the mythic imagination for adults and young people.  She provides training in communication skills for the corporate sector and has delivered theatre courses around the world. She lectures in contemporary British Theatre at Ithaca College, London and is Co-Director of The Institute of Performance Roots. 

EMMMA BONNICI

PRINCIPAL MEMBER

The seeds of the work I do as an actor, singer and teacher are sown in the soil of Grotowski inspired Polish physical theatre and its approaches towards integrity of performance, polyphonic music and the ancient power and stories of music rooted in people, landscape and tradition.

Emma’s work as a performer and teacher is rooted in her 10 years living and working in Wroclaw, Poland, with the Grotowski influenced Polish physical theatres, Song of the Goat Theatre and Teatr Zar. It has taken her on research trips searching for and learning songs and music from polyphonic traditions in Georgia, Corsica, Sicily and also the old folk traditions of Armenia and Scotland.

 

Her early meeting and work with Siberian folk music and the Irkusk Ensemble changed her understanding of music and gave rise to her firm held belief that old traditional music has encoded in it stories, topography, history, and life lived.

ADAM CLIFFORD

PRINCIPAL MEMBER & COMPOSER

Adam is an actor, theatre-maker, percussionist and composer. He studied at the Royal Academy of Music in London.

He then worked extensively with orchestras and contemporary music ensembles around the world before being true to his passion for acting and moving to Paris to study at the Jacques Lecoq International School of Theatre. There Adam spent a revelatory three years, rediscovering the play of the actor and the innate desire to move while beginning to uncover the connections between different artistic mediums through our fundamental creative source.

Having paved a more authentic path forward, he moved to Poland to work with Song of the Goat Theatre, with whom he created new work and toured internationally.  He is now setting up his own company in the UK to create original multidisciplinary work and is also working closely with Eden’s Cave in both a theatrical and musical capacity. Adam plays the music of Steve Reich internationally with the Colin Currie Group.

CHARLES SANDFORD

ACTOR/CREATOR

I am interested in transformation. In where the story we are looking at, whether it's through film, theatre, music or art meets our own personal story. How do these stories work on us and how do we allow them to incarnate. I believe the character finds you for a reason and manifesting it into art is a case of listening to what wants to live. 

At art school I felt like a fraud so I took on the persona of the artist and began to re-enact pieces I thought were perfect. Art history as a script, the works of others as a map for self realisation. This has never stopped, I went onto train as an actor and fell in love with the physical, psychological and collaborative nature of it, with building characters and worlds. I'm fascinated in what makes people tick. 

BA(HONS) Fine Art, Kingston 

MA Theatre Lab, RADA

Actor/creator with: Animikii Theatre & Theatre RE.