Directing acting and art-ing, oh my!

Hello, it’s been a while! Sorry that I haven’t updated this blog in a while… surprise surprise, grad school suddenly got very busy! Or rather, my life as an artist got pretty busy. Halfway through October I got chance to direct and act in an international climate change theatre festival. It was a wonderful chance to immerse myself into the theatre scene in Shanghai, grow as an artist, and work on a project connected to the global community as a whole. The plays I worked on were new works, many commissioned specifically for this project. You can find out more about CCTA here and more about the event in Shanghai (the only one in China!) right here.

Here are some photos of the plays (credit to Alejandro Scott) that show what a range the festival encompassed!

The three plays I acted in were all very different in tone, style, and content-- as an actor, that proved to be an excellent change. It was also fun to switch between such drastically different given circumstances over the course of an evening. My director was a lovely woman from Spain-- sadly, she's moving away from Shanghai in January. The plays were:

  • Lily's Porridge by Sharleen Ndlovu, a play about a mother and her daughter in a drought-ridden country.
  • Homo Sapiens by Chantal Bilodeau, a play about the species that evolved from today's humans looking back at their ancestors.
  • Sardines by Maya Zbib, about... well... dreams, relationships, and water? This one's a tough one to explain!

 

This was my second time ever directing-- the only other time I've done it was in the directing class I took at SU. During that class I realized directing is something I wanted to pursue further, so when this opportunity arose, I took it (even though I was scared to death). I'm definitely glad that I took the risk and decided to direct-- I can't let fear of failure be something that defines me and my decisions. It was a fun bunch of plays to work on, and I was happy to have the chance to work with my peers. We were also quite a diverse group-- an American director, with actors from the UK, Mexico, Portugal, India, and Korea! The plays I directed were:

  • The Rubik's Cube Solution by Sarena Parmar, a farcical situation where the world's problems all came down to solving a rubik's cube
  • Dot to Dot to Dot by Lynn Rosen, a play about... archeology, Sappho, connections? This is another tricky one to explain!
  • The Penguins by Elspeth Tilley, a new take on The Birds by Aristophanes, in which the roles of penguins and scientists are reversed, and the penguins are the ones making observations and conclusions.

 

  The curtain call... I'm the crazy red hair bowing in the middle of the photo!

The curtain call... I'm the crazy red hair bowing in the middle of the photo!

Stick around for some more updates... the semester is winding down, and as I head into final essays and tests, I'm sure I'll feel the urge to procrastinate by writing blog posts!