Ella Mesma Company

The Getting Better Box

The Getting Better Box & A Jellyfish Love Song virtual world performance

This performance, is a Rural Arts’ Keepsake commission and was inspired as the third iteration of Ella Mesma’s Getting Better Box series developed to offer some releif during lockdown.

When Ella was ill as a child, her Mum would to bring out ‘The Getting Better Box’… essentially it was a cardboard box with some toys inside… it didn’t make her better, but as a child, it was a magical thing to open that box only when ill and behold the goodies inside… sometimes Ella even tried to fake sickness just for the box…

Now Ella has created a version of the Getting Better Box for those who have felt isolated and lonely throughout the last year, The Getting Better Box interweaves themes of wellbeing, play and unlearning.

In lockdown 1, The Getting Better Box was inspired around ways to offer relief in these different times.
In lockdown 2, The Getting Better Box took the form of exploring how we can be better humans, looking at what we might unlearn to contribute better to society.

Here are some of the resources which we are still maintaining from those times to (in the words of Hot Brown Honey) Activate, Pollinate, Hydrate, pollinate:

The Getting Better Box 3

Each box will contain clues to the performance experience; A creative invitation made by Makers at the Mill (plus a drink on us!) A quiz (to which you will find the answers within the show) An invitation to the interactive show: an experience which will combine watching, talking and participating as much or as little as you would like in an online adventure, A programme about the show you are invited to see (with links to find out more and get creative with how you might show up and participate). Within the show you will find clues to click on, invitations and questions to consider, moments to play and interact, and moments to relax and unwind in a beautiful location Are you ready for this Jelly? Join us on this journey beyond your imagination for an experience that combines live performance with alternate reality. A Jellyfish Love Song is an underwater love story, celebrating the beauty of nature and the beautiful, calming way of the jellyfish. On this underwater experience, you will be invited to join us for a fantasy adventure under the sea. To join, choose your jellyfish and come for an online adventure with live actors, hidden answers, opportunities to connect and move and an online show. You will be met by your hosts in a utopian world for a fully remote experience that you can access from the comfort of your own home. Combining live performance with alternate reality it is stimulating, entertaining and accessible.

The Getting Better Box: Lockdown 1 & 2

We recognise that at this difficult time, we may have needed support more than ever, and that we were all experiencing some levels of trauma.

Trauma is something we can talk out, and move out of the body and so in this time of difficulty… the Getting Better Box  became a combination of free movement practises, as well as links to material and invitations for ‘how to be better’: practises to decolonize our minds and be anti-racist. 

This was by no means an answer to all our problems, but (and especially with with digital overwhelm), I hoped that providing a collection of anti racist invitations, wellbeing tips, classes by amazing artists, events to attend, meditations to listen to and somatic practices, funding opportunities, etc, in one place, we may have been able to offer some relief… 

The Getting Better Box: Lockdown 3

After recognising my own burn out after lockdown 1, I needed to take some time out, and some time for reflection. After that rest, my creative juices came back, and I had the idea of creating a physical version of the Getting Better Box, collaborating with some incredible artists.

We have now developed a new take on our getting better box which involves performance, art, creativity and post boxes!