The Reluctant Boxer is a live art work with dancing, drawing, and live music an unpredictable hybrid of performance and installation; imagine a Tracy Emin exhibition meets Stig of the Dump meets the Frankenstein story…

A collaboration between a visual artist, a dancer and a musician this durational performance is for audiences of all ages, from 4 upwards.  

‘A woman is alone in the middle of the space, on an island of paper…she is wearing one boxing glove.  The paper is covered in drawings with curious objects strewn around.  The island looks like a large play area or is it a boxing ring? Two of the corners are a set up like little dens or perhaps corners for boxing opponents. We find her drawing, playing and searching around, she wraps up some of the objects in little parcels and hides them around the space. Although occupied, at times she seems a little bored and lonely. She even tries a bit of boxing on her own. We see her create little paper people. Whilst placing one of these little friends in amongst a pile of brown paper she discovers a foot, then a hand, and out from underneath emerges another woman!  Has she discovered, created or imagined this new friend?

Stig introduces Chips to her solitary world. Delighted they discover a man, D, playing the drums underneath some cardboard!  This new noisy playmate and sometimes referee adds to one image after another unfolding and being brought to life in the trio’s ever-transforming world. What ensues is the figuring out of friendships in this playful, absurd and sometimes anarchic world.  Whose place is this? What games shall we play? Why won't you box with me?’

Concept: Yvonne Buskie in collaboration with Christine Devaney
Performers: Christine Devaney, Yvonne Buskie
Musician: David Maxwell
Production Design: Yvonne Buskie


28th May 2017 | Edinburgh International Children’s Festival | Opening Weekend at National Museum of Scotland

This work has been created through a development residency at Artspace, supported by Lyra Theatre (Edinburgh), and presented as part of Imaginate’s Early Ideas platform at Tron Theatre (Glasgow).

For touring availability and requirements, please contact us at

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