Between April and May 2015 I was invited to my second artist residency with Forwardflux for three weeks of intense collaborative exploration of how neighborhoods are transformed, gentrified, or even colonized. Through meetings once a week with the whole group of participants and more intimate rehearsals with two smaller groups, for the first time I worked as dramaturg of a dance piece, Changing Neighborhoods. For the exhibition program, click here.
THE OPPRESSOR. Verminous game, thou art caught! Ensnared as a loathsome bug stuck in the great spider’s silken strands. Jason Sofge, The Tortured One
The Tortured One was developed for the May 2013 Forward Flux collaborate:create “Power of Silence” 3-week residency at Theaterlab. For more info click here. With David Riley and Joyana Feller.
As we struck up a conversation on our first creative meeting, Jason Sofge had an idea for a character to be able to use silence as a weapon. In this harsh power struggle, one character would always speak, while the other would remain silent throughout.
In addition to the peculiar disproportion in the dialogue, the final text provided a fascinating directorial challenge: how to stage a piece in which, due to the extreme violence described in detail in the text, what occurs can hardly be shown on stage in a realistic fashion? With the freedom we were given to explore by the playwright, the actors and I discovered an uncanny territory of ambiguity between the heightened language of the piece and an everyday situation around a tea table.
In April 2013 I was selected as one of the 20 resident artists for a three week marathon on the theme “The Power of Silence” produced by Forwardflux at Theaterlab in New York City.
This was an awesome experience made of fruitful discussion and unexpected discoveries, but most of all of intense collaboration with artists from many disciplines, including visual arts, dance, and even advanced mathematics. Additionally, since I was involved in four projects overall, I enjoyed stepping out of my usual role of director and perform as actor in a couple of them.
For more info, pics and videos, click on the titles below.
Cherry Blossoms, an exploration of the pauses between words in Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard. Director.
The Tortured One, a one act play by Jason Sofge on “weaponized silence”. Director.
Singer, a staged reading inspired by Carson McCuller’s The Heart is a Lonely Hunter. Director and actor.
Frameables by Dan O’Neil. Actor.
The residency culminated in a 3 hour performance on May 19, 2013 that took over the three spaces at Theaterlab. For the full program click here.