Meeting the Acts | Open Stage 2019

24 May 2019

With Open Stage just around the corner, we caught up with a few of the acts ahead of it so we could give you a little taste of what to expect. With Carlota Matos about her piece On the Way to Language, Charlie George about her stand-up set and Esther Steward from Bristol Harmony, we chatted all things Open Stage.



Esther Steward | Bristol Harmony

We at Bristol Harmony have been singing West Gallery music for over ten years and are just as excited and nervous about singing on the big stage as our country predecessors would have been. This village church music was part of the culture of country working people in the late 17th century. It’s not high art and is really fun to sing. I should warn you that these tunes have a tendency to get stuck in your head.

I wonder how the original, rural, singers of our West Gallery songs would feel if they knew we were performing them at the then newly-built Old Vic? I think some would probably be outraged. Some would consider it blasphemous. And some would be secretly thrilled to have the opportunity to visit the city and sing at the theatre alongside its glamorous performers.


Carlota Matos | On the Way to Language

My name is Carlota and I work in theatre, film and music. Originally from Porto, Portugal, my background is in classical music and physical theatre. I moved to England in 2015 to develop my practice and since then have been working on my own projects. I am passionate about crossing art forms and working with young people and communities. I am part of ‘Play the Goat’, a new theatre company emerging from the ‘Made in Bristol’ scheme at BOV. Our first show will be on 3rd-6th July in the Weston Studio!

Joining Open Stage is a great opportunity to get more visibility and to test my work in front of an audience. ‘On the Way to Language’ is an experimental movement piece about the origins of language. Drawing inspiration from my own experience and struggles speaking different languages, it explores themes of inclusion and the idea that language can divide us as much as it can bring us together.


Charlie George | Stand-up Comedian

I’m a former circus performer and dancer, who trained at Circomedia on the first ever BTECH Circus course! I have worked as a young company assistant at the Bristol Old Vic theatre and had a short stint as a PA to the directors. I started comedy to find my voice, turns out my voice is a lot like an 18th Century white man's trapped inside the body of a queer brown lady! I recently performed live on BBC Asian Network Comedy and am a Pride's Got Talent, Leicester Square New Comedian Award & LGBTQ New Comedian Award Finalist.

I decided to join in with Open Stage because I miss Bristol! I love it. And I feel like I owe it some of the best and most formative years of my life. I will be doing a bespoke stand up comedy set in the evening performance slot. It will feature some great anecdotes and jokes about my wild ride living in Bristol over the years. I came up with it using real life experience of years living, learning, loving and making creative work in Bristol!


You can catch these and all the other fantastic acts from across Bristol, for free, at Open Stage 2019, in the Theatre on Mon 27 May. For more info, click here.