1981. Wimbledon. Bjorn Borg and John McEnroe face each other across the net: the self-controlled champion and the impassioned upstart. An epic rivalry comes to a head. A six-year old boy watches and learns.
Bjorn Borg epitomised tennis cool. He was everything Jamie and his brother wanted to be. Then John McEnroe came along and Jamie was beaten, along with Borg. Thirty years of torment and self-questioning later, Jamie is ready to face his greatest opponent.
Beating McEnroe is a new solo show from award-winning theatre maker Jamie Wood about a pivotal moment. With the help of his audience, amongst vivid, surprising images, Jamie performs a cathartic ritual: recreating and reliving the last point of one fateful match until he is finally able to move on in his life. www.jamiewood.org.uk
“All I know is that I learned how to get laughs. You have to learn what people will laugh at then proceed accordingly”. – Stan Laurel
Author and direction: Jamie Wood and Wendy Hubbard
Performers: Jamie Wood
Lighting design: Andres Velasquez
Music: Dominic Kennedy
Devised with Ellie Griffiths
Jamie Wood is a performer and director. His work ranges from the comic and darkly surreal plays of The Frequency D’Ici (Paperweight, Fringe First 2008, Director) to the striking physical and visual poetics of Petra’s Pulse (Aegean Fatigue, National Review of Live Art 2008, Co-director and Performer). He is an Associate Artist with Chris Goode & Company. As a long-term collaborator with Goode, Jamie devised and performed in Escapology (2004), the critically acclaimed Homemade (2005) and Longwave (2006), and co-directed Hey Matthew (2008) and 9 (2011). In 2009, he was short-listed for a Stage Acting Award (Best Ensemble) for Icarus 2.0, devised with director Matt Ball. Paperweight, Icarus 2.0, Homemade and Longwave were all shortlisted for the Total Theatre Award for Best Devised Production. Jamie has devised work for national and international tours with artists including Caroline Horton, Spike, Toby Park (Spymonkey), Guy Dartnel, Mischa Twitchin (Shunt) and Niki McCretton and most recently with The Belarus Free Theatre and Chris Thorpe. He also works as a Clown Doctor with Theodora Children’s Trust, visiting sick children in hospitals throughout the UK. His work reflects a training combining fine art, theatre, clown and dance.
3 June 2015, ACT Festival Bilbao
Best Show at BE FESTIVAL 2014 as voted by the audience