“A nurse … checks her wristwatch.”
So begins The Space Between, the stunning one-woman show written and performed by art-pop storyteller Shannon Curtis on her 75-date North American tour in 2017. Equal parts concert and theatrical performance, The Space Between expanded the boundaries of what a solo singer-songwriter musical performance could look like.
The Space Between was written between December 2016 and March 2017, and is an unflinchingly frank exploration of the experiences birthed in that turbulent time. People who lived through the 60s who have seen The Space Between have commented that this show related to our current time in the same way that the music of the 60s served as the soundtrack for the civil rights movement. A woman in an audience on last year’s tour characterized the show as “The message of Joan Baez, combined with the punk spirit of Joan Armatrading and the melodies of Sarah Mclachlan.”
ABOUT THE 2018 SHOW
Shannon is currently developing a follow-up show for the upcoming 2018 touring season, based on a new album to be released in June. The first video and single — called “Armed With Joy” — are out on April 3rd.
Shannon’s new album explores the idea that opposing truths often exist simultaneously with one another; and that holding them both in tension is a kind of spiritual practice that can make space for deeper understanding, transcendence, and progress in the world. “Armed With Joy” explores the proposition that expressing joy can be a radical act of resistance.
Like The Space Between, Shannon’s 2018 performances will feature her performing solo on stage, seated at a keyboard. In what they call an “immersive storytelling” presentation, the show will consist of songs interconnected in a linear narrative by spoken-word storytelling, and underpinned by environmental recordings, movie-like score, and real-time sound design contributed by Shannon’s husband, music producer Jamie Hill, from his position embedded within the audience. The overall effect is like seeing a movie with no visuals.
Here is a concert film of Shannon’s 2016 “Heart on Fire” show. This is generally what her show looks and feels like in terms of the performance, storytelling, and emotional connection, with the (very large) omission of the “immersive storytelling” components, which were new for the The Space Between show. Nonetheless, this will give you a good feel for Shannon’s innate performing and storytelling sensibilities. Skip to 39:00 for a particularly moving story and song combo, if that sort of thing interests you:
Here is a stream of the studio album of The Space Between – Audio Play. The live shows differ from the studio albums in that they’re performed live on a solo keyboard, in a raw, more intense, stripped-back way, like the concert film above. Regardless, this will give you a sense of last year’s material and storytelling perspective, which this year’s tour will be building upon:
And, for context, here is Shannon’s 2015 TEDx Talk:
Thanks for reading. We can’t wait to share this show and its message with your community. ❤