What if your mobile phone could speak to you?

Duncan Green
Duncan Green

It’s a world performance poet Duncan Green will explore when he brings his one-man show (with a little help from his dad) to Bracklesham Barn on Friday, November 8 at 7.30pm.

Connected is a spoken word play that explores what would happen if mobile phones became sentient It also looks at their impact on society, from the first mobile phone call in 1973 to a world dependent on mobile phones in 2125.

As Duncan says: “You carry a mobile phone with you everywhere. It allows you to communicate with others no matter where you are. But what if it were able to talk for itself? What would it say? What would it do? How would you feel about this?”

The piece is a dystopian spoken-word play, Duncan explains: “It looks at a possible future and the idea that mobile phones have become sentient. I start off the timeline by looking at the first-ever mobile call and go right the way through to a world that is completely dependent on mobile phones.

“I think really I am positive about mobile phones. I think like anything there are pros and cons. You can find the negative and you can find the positive. Mobiles are great. They make communication extremely easy. It has helped so many areas, like social media. But there is certainly a negative side to it.”

Duncan has been inspired by the TV show Black Mirror about how technology affects humans: “It’s a series on Netflix. It is all fictional, but you watch it all like it could actually happen.

“The negative side of mobile phones is the control. Some people’s lives are spent permanently looking down at a screen. They have their telephone in their hands and they are completely shut off from the world around them, just connected to something different. You can be walking towards someone and you have to say ‘Boo!’ because if you don’t, you will just collide with each other because you are within two or three yards of each other and they just haven’t noticed you. And also you go for a meal and someone has got their phone on the table as just a way of dealing with the uncomfortable silences. They will just start scrolling through it.”

Duncan admits he’s happily old-school in that respect; the old norms of social etiquette still hold: “The people that I interact with are very creative and don’t let their phones control them perhaps as much as other people do theirs. But certainly for a lot of people their mobile phone is a crutch, and for a lot of people it is the first thing that they look at when they wake up.”

Duncan is a performance poet from the Lordswood district of Southampton: “I am a poet and a story-teller and for the last three to four years, I have been working on constructing spoken words shows. I was fortunate a couple of years ago that I was invited to be an international guest at a poetry slam festival in Lisbon which allowed me to perform the rough draft of this play and it allowed me to think I could do this full time.”

The piece is a solo show which usually uses videos and audio, but for technical reasons Duncan’s dad will be stepping in to provide the voice of the phone for the Bracklesham date.: “I think it will make it more poignant.”

This play is suitable for everyone aged 14-plus.

Doors 6.45pm, performance 7.30pm. Tickets on www.ticketsource.co.uk/earnley-parish-council.

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