For this project I assisted National Theatre of Scotland’s Associate Director Simon Sharkey. The work was commissioned by 14-18 NOW, the UK’s arts programme for the First World War centenary, conceived by Jeremy Deller in collaboration with Rufus Norris. 27 organisations collaborated on the event, which was produced by Birmingham Repertory Theatre and the National Theatre, working in close collaboration with partners including: Lyric Theatre Belfast, Manchester Royal Exchange, National Theatre of Scotland, National Theatre Wales, Northern Stage, Playhouse Derry-Londonderry, Salisbury Playhouse, Sheffield Theatres and Theatre Royal Plymouth.
Thousands of volunteers took part in a UK-wide event on Friday 1 July 2016, as a modern memorial to mark the centenary of the Battle of the Somme. We’re Here Because We’re Here saw some 1400 voluntary participants dressed in First World War uniform appear unexpectedly in locations across the UK. The young men were a reminder of the 19,240 men who were killed on 1 July 1916, the first day of the Battle of the Somme. Each participant represented an individual soldier who was killed on that day. The work is partly inspired by tales of sightings during and after the First World War by people who believed they had seen a dead loved one.