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Pain and I

Pain and I is a body of work with multiple ways to access and experience it - live dance performance, audio piece and performance score publication. Pain and I premiered at Take Me Somewhere 2021.

A poetic audio piece that reflects on the performer’s chronic pain not as enemy, as you might expect, but as an old friend. Guardian 4 stars


Poetic ... gentle ... Hopfinger’s audio work demonstrates the immense value of learning to be with that which you can’t leave – pain, grief. Exeunt Magazine

Link to 5-minute excerpt of the audio performance, Soundcloud.

Link to performance lecture published with the Queer Disability Studies Network about Pain and I, Chronic Pain and Crip Performance Practice 

Pain and I is a meditative, playful and bold exploration into living with chronic pain. I have lived with chronic back pain for over 19 years, and have largely related to my pain as a barrier to my life and work. For this work I turn towards my pain as a creative collaborator, exploring it as an unwanted life partner and intimate companion.


I am trying to listen to you, get to know you, honour you, see what you have you have to say and let you take centre stage.


Through experimental movement, poetic text and sound composition, Pain and I acknowledges the hardships and celebrates the richness and complexities of chronic pain experience.

Creator and performer - Sarah Hopfinger

Music and sound composition - Alicia Jane Turner.

Dramaturgy - Laura Bradshaw. Documentation - Jassy Earl.

Funded by Creative Scotland, produced by Take Me Somewhere and Platform, supported by The Work Room and Battersea Arts Centre.