Where I Go (When I Can’t Be Where I Am)

Written by Mobius
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8th August 2020
A woman’s face looks directly to camera, over a vivid blue background. A mirror image overlaps her face creating a distorted effect.

© Hannah McPake & Joshua Pharo

Adapted from the award-winning The Shape of the Pain (Scotsman Fringe First), this new short film created in isolation is a powerful and intimate insight into living with a rare, synesthetic chronic pain condition. Where I Go (When I Can’t Be Where I Am), commissioned as part of BBC Arts ongoing Culture in Quarantine initiative, bringing the arts into the homes of the nation at a time of lockdown, interweaves Rachel Bagshaw’s personal experiences of living with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) with a fictional narrative about a love affair.

In April 2020, a woman sits alone in her house. She lives with constant pain. Pain so intense she can hear it and see it. Pain with no apparent cause. Remembering a past relationship, she wonders if she can ever communicate how she experiences the world in a way that someone else will truly understand.

The film reunites the original The Shape of the Pain creative team: performer Hannah McPake, writer Chris Thorpe, sound from Melanie Wilson, and Offie Award nominated video design from Joshua Pharo, and incorporates fully integrated captioning. Where I Go… attempts to explain what Rachel’s chronic pain sounds like, looks like and feels like. The work was supported by BBC Arts, Arts Council England, The Space and Battersea Arts Centre and will be screened as part of the BBC’s Culture in Quarantine series – Filmed in Lockdown.

Rachel Bagshaw said, “Experiencing the isolation of lockdown chimed strongly with my experience of pain and I wanted to find a filmic language to reflect this; to express what can’t be described in words through visuals and sound score. It’s been a hugely collaborative venture with the team working remotely across the UK. This is my first ever film and making it during lockdown has been an extraordinary experience – a steep learning curve and one I’ve been grateful to go through with the team from the original theatre show.”


Best experienced with headphones for the full effect of the sound.

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