Introducing Rufus Isabel Elliot

This is the back of an artist announcement card for Rufus Isabel Elliot. The design is styled on an American baseball card. The card has a thin white border. At the top of the card, there is a thick black band with the artist name, Rufus, and a description of their role in CRIPtic, as composer. Below this, there is a black and white portrait photograph of Rufus. In it musician Rufus Elliot is pictured playing its viola, focusing on something out of shot. It is wearing a black short sleeved shirt, with its short hair tied up at the back. Below the photo, there is a large black and white logo which reads CRIPtic.

What made you want to be an artist / performer?

I don’t really know how to answer this question.

I love music, but struggled a lot with performing before I got into the more composing and writing side of things. I had a brilliant A Level teacher who taught me that it was okay to find composing hard, and that I could do composing however I wanted. I found that I had some things that sort of needed to become music, that it could open up possibilities in some way.

I find I can do a lot more (musically and otherwise) in a quiet room by myself with a pen and paper than I can elsewhere. 

What/who inspires your craft?

This is another fiendish question.

I feel like one of the things I love about composing is the way it requires a whole world. You read, listen to music, go out and about, and those things get woven into music. And similarly, the music weaves its own world, with its own characters and settings, not necessarily even asking your say-so, which is in turn inspiring (for both life and music). 

In our work with CRIPtic, myself and Rylan have been thinking about courtly romance and Middle English dream allegories, and about the medieval birds who tell each other what they think about courtly romance and how to do it in dream allegory poems.

What’s your vision for the future of theatre and where do you see yourself going after CRIPtic?

I think it’s fair to say I don’t have a vision for total-theatre-now, just working on projects and seeing what a person can learn from them. 

I’m currently working on finishing quite a big project, called ‘A/am/ams (come ashore, turn over)’, which I’ve been working on for… a while. I’m going to be presenting it in autumn as part of the OVER / AT world, with a bunch of wonderful trad and experimental folks. I’ve got some recorded music coming out, as well. Then I’m going to have a proper rest.

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