Follow Us on Twitter

Mental health explored through innovative technology in Tom at Sadler's Wells

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

AN innovative production combining choreography with digital animation, Tom receives its world premiere at the Lilian Baylis Studio from Thursday, November 15 to Saturday, November 17, 2018.

Crafted by Sadler’s Wells New Wave Associate and award-winning film-maker Wilkie Branson, Tom seeks to chart one man’s struggle with his identity by exploring themes of mental health and personal sacrifice.

Cutting edge technologies including animation, projection mapping and surround-sound, intertwine with B-boying to create a narrative exploring the mind of the protagonist who rediscovers who he is in this dance for camera installation.

Framed through Branson’s personal experiences, the work seeks to question what we shed of ourselves as we journey into adulthood, and whether the abandonment of these aspects creates a new identity. Tom aims to address what it is to struggle with a false sense of identity, and how we view this changing sense of self within our own minds.

Set in a hinterland between the civilised world and the wilderness, Tom is animated using a process called photogrammetry, where the set is created and scanned in. Uniquely, Branson has filmed himself dancing and moving dozens of times over, representing various possible identities. Beautifully animated and presented to the audience with three levels of screen depth, Tom is a 3D visual and audio experience immersing the audience in the layered world of its protagonist.

NB: The work has a dark narrative that deals with mental health issues and includes scenes of a mildly violent nature which some viewers may find upsetting. Recommended for age 14+.

Tickets: £17 – available from the box office on 020 7863 8000 or online at

Times: 8pm, with 4pm Saturday matinee.

Also in the Lilian Baylis Studio: the world premiere of Eva Recacha’s new full-length work Aftermath (October 25 and October 26, 2018).