All posts by Kai Durkin

History Talks and Boat Walks

Captain’s Log: 09/02/19, 16.35

Back with another update!

First of all, I’m delighted to announce that I am now doing a second placement! Along with Loretta, I am going to be helping facilitate a creative writing workshop as part of the Dundee Women’s Festival. The event, titled “Women’s Lives, Women’s Voices” will be occurring on the 2nd of March, and is composed of two parts: the morning will be talks from three different historians about extraordinary women from history; while the afternoon will be a chance for attendees to write in response to these talks. I don’t want to give too much away about the talks, but the topics span from right here in Dundee all the way to Germany, and I can tell you right now you don’t wanna miss any of them!

The main goal of Loretta and myself as facilitators is simply to encourage the women attending to put pen to paper. I have technically lead a writing workshop before. One person, a very smart, cooperative and forgiving 11 year-old turned up, and we mainly talked about her Harry Potter fan-fiction. Despite this bountiful wealth of experience and knowledge to draw from, I am as nervous as I am excited. I think I might defer to Loretta, who actually has real teaching experience.

In news regarding my placement at the Rep, on Thursday Hamzah and I met to share our ideas of people and places we might want to investigate and interview. This included a trip to Dundee’s own HMS Unicorn, one of the oldest warships in the world. We conducted a little research, explored the exhibition onboard the ship and established some potential contacts to interview later. I also took a plethora of pictures, though I unfortunately didn’t manage to catch any of the ship’s supposed ghosts on camera:

A narwhal horn
The gun deck
I think this is called the hold

Following this visit Hamzah and I headed to the library to record our first interviewees – ourselves. Next step is trying to edit out all the background noise so they’re usable!

This is Captain Kai,

Signing off.

P.S. Did you know that Captain Kidd, supposed pirate and inspiration for the persona of Ryuji Sakamoto in Persona 5, was born in Dundee?

 

It’s All Kicking Off

After a few weeks of waiting and rescheduling, I am delighted to be able to report back with an update on my placement at the Rep!

Yesterday (Monday 4th) was our first meeting, held in the Rep bar. I only ever seem capable of arriving early or late to things, so I had fifteen minutes to distract my friend on reception from his work before we started.

When the show’s director, Ewan Donald, arrived, there was that surreal moment of meeting in person for the first time a talented actor you’ve seen on stage in a dozen different guises. The immediate recognition of someone who is in fact a complete stranger. But he and everyone else proved to be very welcoming.

The show itself, A-Z of Dundee, is apparently still in its early stages, but the job of my fellow intern Hamzah and myself has been confirmed: go out into the public, gather up as many different stories as possible, and find out how the world relates to Dundee, and how Dundee relates to itself. Even though I had been told already this was what we’d be doing, now that our work is beginning in earnest it all feels much more real – and exciting!  All through yesterday I kept getting distracted from whatever I was doing, pausing in my work to add to the list of people and groups I think it might be interesting to try and interview. My hope is to try and gather as diverse a range of interviews as possible, showing both Dundee the old and the new. Gail, our tutor, has also emphasised our opportunity here to showcase the communities and stories that don’t often get told, so from my end expect an obnoxious barrage of rainbows and glitter.

Hamzah and I have already agreed on a few targets, and have arranged to meet on Thursday for some research in a certain nautical, supposedly haunted location, so stay tuned for that! In the meantime, I have another meeting tomorrow about another placement I have agreed to join…

Your intrepid journalist,

Kai

P.S. In far more important news, I have just beaten the Casino of Envy palace in Persona 5, and survived the half hour long cutscene that follows it. I knew a certain “ace detective” was too good to be true!

 

Hello there!

Hi, Kai here!

An introduction? Well, let’s see: my star sign is Aries, my moon sign is Taurus, my rising sign is Virgo and according to one Facebook quiz my primal sign is Piranha. I don’t know what any of these things mean, but I do think they sound pretty cool.

Perhaps it would be more useful to say that I’m 22, a writing student, born in Perth and living in Dundee. I own too many t-shirts with cartoons on them. I read just about everything but fantasy, sci-fi and comedy are my favourites. I like writing in a variety of formats but the only things I ever seem to “finish” are plays. I’ve been getting really into comics and graphic novels lately. I want to explore different kinds of storytelling: prose; comics; film; theatre; video games; that one guy who works for Buzzfeed and made a scary story out of Tweets; recordings of table top role-playing games transformed into ambitious feats of long-form improvised collaborative storytelling; TV. I write sentences that are too long. I’m currently reading Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman. I make tangential Star Wars references in my blog titles. The last book I finished was Killing and Dying by Adrian Tomine.  I picked Makoto to date in Persona 5.

I will be starting an internship at the Dundee Rep Theatre soon, so stay tuned for that. Unless you’d rather hear more about my progress in Persona 5. If enough people asked for that instead I’m sure the university could work out some kind of compromise.

I’ll think of a catchy sign-off later,

Kai