The Mechanical Animal Corporation

Theatre company

The Mechanical Animal Corporation is a theatre company based in Bristol, UK, led by Tom Bailey. Tom has performed and directed a range of theatre shows across the UK. Presently, he is artist in residence at University College London. The company is developing projects in Bristol, London, Finland and Egypt.

Ghost Sonata is a new theatre project being developed in collaboration with Finnish actress Anna Korolainen. Anna is a Helsinki-based actress and a co-artistic director of a Nordic theatre company Spindrift Theatre. She is a multilingual physical performer who works in Finland, Iceland, UK and France.

Ghost Sonata is a new devised theatre performance, inspired by a text by the Swedish playwright August Strindberg of the same title. Curious about the ‘naturalism’ theatre movement, of which Strindberg was a part, this project explores theatrical naturalism in the 21st century context of severe climatic change. Setting this new exploration in the melting Arctic, this production looks to find a new articulation for themes and metaphors in Strindberg’s text. The developing result is a theatre show in sonata form, containing an admixture of field recordings and Rachmaninov’s haunting symphony The Isle of the Dead.

Created by English and Finnish performers, this international project explores dialogues between Nordic and Anglo-saxon perceptions of the Arctic and ‘Arcticness’, in the context of climatic change. To date Ghost Sonata has been supported by The Kone Foundation, The Barbican Theatre London, and Samovarteatret in Norway.