I Didn’t Want To Join Your Stupid Cult Anyway [January 2019]

cw: images/sounds/descriptions of physical (and structural) violence

“I Didn’t Want to Join Your Stupid Cult Anyway is a performance/installation that seeks to challenge existing narratives of militarism and imperialism in our society, through the repetition and repurposing of different texts and media associated with the British Army.”

a short extract of the 150 minute performance/installation

I Didn’t Want To Join Your Stupid Cult Anyway was created during my first semester studying MA Contemporary Performance Practice at the University of Salford. It was designed to be durational, with the audience coming and going as they pleased, and staying as long as they liked. The version I performed ran for 150 minutes, but it could easily have been longer. 

The piece was made up of a series of ‘texts’ that were repeated at random over the duration, constantly being recontextualised and reinterpreted, some read or written live by me, and some fixed to loop.

These ‘texts’ were:

  • the advertising brief for the British Army’s 2018 media campaign ‘This is Belonging’
  • the lyrics to the Every Time I Die song I Didn’t Want To Join Your Stupid Cult Anyway
  • an Armistice Day post by the Facebook group Crimes of Britain
  • a playlist of the five ‘This Is Belonging’ ads mixed with footage of violence committed by British soldiers
  • a fitness routine delivered by some men from a Gurkha unit

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