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Intern Profile: João Maia

I am graduate of the Escola Superior de Teatro e Cinema - Acting BA (Hons.) I have also trained in Rose Bruford College as part of the European Theater Arts programme.

I first came across an Immersive Theatre Production (“Anjo Branco-CDV”) in my hometown Viana do Castelo, Portugal. The piece was a site specific historical reconstruction of the 1955 life-style on the hospital ship, Gil Eannes. That was the first time I witnessed something where the spectator was active in the space and where the audience flows were carefully elaborated.

I then returned to Lisbon to discover that this type of art form was inexistent. With the ambition to look for something different other than end on theater and text based performances, I searched for innovative theater companies. Apart from some small promenade experiments my search was unsuccessful. That result forced me to push myself and I started working in what I believed to be important cores to this work such as improvisation skills.

In September of 2016 I moved to London and integrated the European Theater Arts programme. I joined a devised project directed by The Lab Collective that resulted in an interactive theatre production called “L.INC CLEAN LOVE: AN INTRODUCTION”. Finally, a name was used to categorize an art form I was looking for so long and more than that I was introduced to vast number of companies that produced work in the same terms. In April, I started Teaching in Theater Delicatessen as part of their Sunday Youth Theater project oriented by Scaffold State. In the meantime, I started working on a small metatheatrical sketch based comedy improv project then ended up on a production called “Mr Dwayne” that premiered on the RBC symposium festival. The show was also performed in Théâtre de Ménilmontant, Paris as part of the Dreams Before Dawn.

I recently started an internship with The Lab Collective and DifferencEngine. Where I am going to be working close in their upcoming production Incoming/Exodus that will be performed in Rich Mix on the 6th October and in Camden People's Theatre on 17th to the 21st October from Lab Collective, and DifferencEngine’s production of The People´s Revolt that will be performed on the 3rd to the 21st October in the Tower of London.

I have come along away since I first decided to dedicate my life to the pursuit of a career in theater. As a long-term plan, I aim to introduce the interactive immersive theater art form to Portugal. In the short-term plan, I intend to establish myself in London and keep developing as a theater practitioner, continue teaching and keep working on small comedy fringe comedy productions. My life has turned one hundred and eighty degrees since I arrived to London so It is hard for me to determine the outcome of my destination. I only have to enjoy the journey!

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