Pact with Pointlessness

Wendy Houstoun


Hailed as one of the UK’s most outstanding performers and creators, Wendy Houstoun’s highly distinctive style blends beautifully observed movement with rigorously constructed text, and genuine meaning with an irreverent wit. Increasingly incorporating bold video imagery into her work, her multi-award-winning performances maintain a strong English identity and eccentricity while having a direct and accessible presentation style that has universal appeal. Alongside her self-written, self-directed solo work, Wendy is widely known internationally for her many collaborations with DV8 Physical Theatre, Forced Entertainment and Candoco amongst others.

Described as a solo piece for two people, Pact with Pointlessness was made in response to the untimely death of Houstoun’s close friend and collaborator Nigel Charnock (co-founder of DV8), and is driven by her need to speak about personally relevant issues relating to the complexities of age and dying, while trying to side step the stereotypes that accompany them. Using conventional theatre constructs in an unconventional way, Houstoun navigates her way through scenes of seemingly futile purpose with her trademark humour and forthright honesty. 


In the press

“The effect is a kind of punk-Beckett" Total Theatre

Production details

  • Writer

    Wendy Houstoun
  • Devisor

    Wendy Houstoun
  • Director

    Wendy Houstoun
  • Choreographer

    Wendy Houstoun
  • Designer

    Chris Copland (Lighting Designer)
  • Number of people on stage

  • Number of people in touring company

  • Freight


    Oversized flat packed cardboard boxes

  • Touring Availability

    From September 2015
  • Scale of venue

    Small-scale (capacity up to 400)
  • Minimum performance space

    6m x 6m
  • Text-based

    Medium (some text with a strong visual/physical element)

In Edinburgh

  • Venue

    Studio 1, Dance Base
  • Production dates

    26-30 AUGUST
  • Production times

  • Duration

    55 MINS (no interval)
  • Audience capacity




Wendy Houstoun is able to provide wraparound activity including:

Post show talks
Illustrated talks about her work
Workshops for experienced dancers/actors performers

Wendy usually prefers to lead intensive workshops over a number of days as her work is cumulative and needs time to develop relationships with the participants. The work tends to revolve around how text and movement work together, and work with theatrical devising methods and improvisations to develop dancers sense of performance and audience relationship.

Additional productions