What do you need? / Is there anything you really want? / Can you ask for things?
One of the conditions of our premise for Deliverance is that we cannot ask for anything. You can ask us what we have, you can ask us if we are hungry, and you are free to come and take a look around the space, but we won’t tell you what we need or want. We don’t do this to be coy, but in order that your own imagination is not curtailed by our prescriptions: we’re more interested to see what people bring to us when they have to conceive of something themselves - this is how the piece reveals something about you and, by extension, your society.
We have two friends who act as our ‘guardians,’ who come to check on us each afternoon, but who are forbidden to participate by bringing us things. In the privacy of our conversations with them we are free to let rip and whinge about some thing or another we feel is gravely missing, but we still won’t tell you what!
People come to us and wrack their brains trying to figure out the single thing we need or are lacking. Suddenly they think they have hit upon this core element we are missing - a toothbrush! A sleeping bag! Trashy magazines! Steamed greens! - but of course there is no single thing missing. What people decide we must need reveals something about themselves and their own priorities: what they themselves would most want if they were in our situation. That’s what we’re interested in.
[Deliverance at the Adelaide Fringe, March 2012]