Under My Skin is a new work by Alessandra Fel, a Lecoq-trained physical theatre performer, director and teacher. The work began as an exploration into depression, a subtle illness almost invisible to others and even to ourselves. It exists and creeps under our skin until it feels unbearable to wear it. Having witnessed her mother suffering from postnatal depression, as well as experienced it herself when she became a mother five years ago, Alessandra chose to focus the work on the struggles of motherhood. Using personal narratives, multimedia and physicality, Under My Skin traces the lives of three characters – two generations of women and a man – to shed light on the complexities and struggles of maternity and postnatal depression.
Alessandra and her team spent 2016 at Centre 42 developing the work through research and improvisation. During their Basement Workshop tenure, Under My Skin had two work-in-progress presentations — one in Feb 2016 and another in Dec 2016.
Under My Skin was developed in residence at Centre 42’s Basement Workshop.
Follow the creation process through this series of video interviews with creator and director Alessandra Fel.
APPROACHING A THEME (21 May 2016)
In this clip, Alessandra talks about how she initially chose to work on the theme on depression in “Under My Skin”, eventually focusing on postnatal depression and motherhood as the work developed.
STORYTELLING (21 May 2016)
“Under My Skin” tells the story of a mother and her son. In this clip, Alessandra, a Lecoq-trained physical theatre practitioner, talks about telling this story of motherhood through movement, alongside other theatrical elements.
THE RESEARCH (21 May 2016)
Alessandra and her team did a lot of work to get into the skin of women who have suffered from postnatal depression. In this clip, Alessandra talks about their research and how it translates to the stage.
ON THE RIGHT TRACK (17 November 2016)
Alessandra and her team continued their research on postnatal depression in the later half of 2016. This time, they interviewed two women who had suffered from postnatal depression. They found that the experiences of these two women complemented their prior research online on postnatal depression, their early chats with IMH counsellors, and Alessandra’s own personal memories about the illness. Their research supported and fueled the development of “Under My Skin”.
PUTTING EVERYTHING TOGETHER (17 November 2016)
Alessandra talks about the two weeks leading up to their second work-in-progress showing in December ( just a month before the public premiere at the M1 Singapore Fringe Festival). The two weeks would be an intense period of putting the various elements of “Under My Skin” together — movement, text, visuals, sound and set.