PLEASURE IN THE PAST: DOLLY'S WORLD APART NEXT DOOR & PLEASURE IN A PANDEMIC: THEATRE FOR THE HALF MOON YOUTH THEATRE
by Yael Schnitzer
The enchanting spell of the Poplar that once was is replaced by an air of suppression, tower blocks rising, the neighborhood a victim of private developers, consumerism and capitalists. A once-bright district is now aging, overshadowed by the monstrous structures of canary wharf next door. This project is framed by a study of the life of Miss Rawlings, a character in David Byrne’s film True Stories (1986) whose experience of the world is filtered through and skewed by the television screen in her bedroom; her world can be seen as a parallel to Dolly Scannell’s experience of Poplar, which now exists in Dolly’s imagination alone. The project seeks to transform the existing derelict warehouses on this site in Whitechapel and into an inhabitable modern landscape, taking reference from Les Miserables by Ladj Ly (2019). As a project which aims to contribute to the community and address local issues such as race, poverty and crime, it is significant that the proposal is sensitive to the site’s past and respects the fabric which contains the memories of the journeys and experiences which have shaped Whitechapel.