Between 2003-5 Reactor developed its collective practice under the banner of GHAOS, a new behaviour and belief system developed through a series of intertwined projects. During this period the group’s collective consciousness became more responsive and productive. As the layering of projects built up, GHAOS became more than just a name; it was a belief and a way of life, both for the group and for the many participants - known as the GHAOS Actors (i.e. the audience). These events persistently challenged their audience in a number of ways, including their patience and tolerance. ‘GHAOS Actors’ were required to respond when put on the spot; locate and develop their own role within the project; and participate in a set of increasingly complex mythologies.
My favourite moment was when Spickle, dressed all in silver foil, wearing a Robin Hood hat and holding a large cardboard recreation of Professor Yaffle from Bagpuss, took me through the streets of Hockley towards our start. He regaled me with an elaborate back-story to the game and just as he was proudly declaring that he was a hologram sent from the future, an elderly couple stopped him and asked politely the directions to St Mary’s Church. He answered, they thanked him and continued on their way, and neither party batted an eyelid.
Cardboard infused live performance.
Just as he was proudly declaring that he was a hologram sent from the future, an elderly couple stopped him and asked politely the directions to St Mary’s Church.
The experience of watching these moments is like falling asleep in front of children's TV and waking up in front of a surrealist European art house production with blurred subtitles.
Egg Boxes? Fishing Rods? A portal to another dimension? Ah yes, it must be Reactor.
The local dadaist Reactor troupe invaded the Cinema's cafébar on the final night with a hilarious grand-guignol performance.
Compiled Press (.pdf, 133 KB)
GHAOS was a multi-commission, multi-partner project and was supported by Arts Council England. GHAOS Starts Here! - NOW Festival (Nottingham - UK) in 2003, GHAOS ZX: Return of the Egg Box - Screenplay (Nottingham - UK) and Shift (Leeds - UK), Horse Drawn GHAOS: The Barrel Organ - Seen (Leicester - UK) and Q Arts (Derby - UK), Reactor Barge Inn - LIFT (London - UK), The Reactor Party is for You, Comrade - Waygood Gallery (Newcastle - UK), The Reactor Red Rooms Razzamatazz - You Are Here Festival (Nottingham - UK), Not a Hope in GHAOS - Diskurs Festival (Giessen - Germany), the Reactor Russian Dancing (Shit) Bears - Duckie (London - UK) in 2004, and Ghouls & GHAOS: Escape from Reactor Towers - Screenplay (Nottingham - UK) in 2005.