UNIVERSES & Double Edge Theatre
UNIVERSES and Double Edge Theatre co-facilitated a workshop sharing process as part of ArtsEmerson's The Next Thing (TNT) Festival on Friday, February 22nd, 2013. This workshop was created through a partnership of HowlRound and the New England Foundation of the Arts. Before the workshop, we asked each company a few questions about their process:
HowlRound: What is the very first thing you do when creating a new piece?
Double Edge Theatre: The first thing we do is begin training, physically and metaphysically, and parallel to that we begin research into our training methods and our subject. For instance looking at the artwork of the period, or in the case of Grand Parade, looking at Chagall's artwork and figuring out how to physically embody the paintings. We also choose music that is meaningful to us, and that we feel will help us find the world of the work we are creating, and we read fiction and non-fiction to expand this world. Close to the beginning we also choose the major objects we will work with and begin building prototypes or finding them in the case of found objects. Out of all this the world is improvised that we will use to develop the precise materials of the performance.
UNIVERSES: Sometimes it can start with words, sometimes it can start with a song...just allow ourselves to get out of our own way... For us, creating a new piece is allowing anything to be allowed in our room. We create work as an ensemble, so it's really about what each member is bringing to the table. And trusting where the journey takes us.
HowlRound: If your process were a president, who would it be and why?
Double Edge Theatre: Thomas Jefferson and Hillary Clinton. Jefferson was an inventor and extremely creative. Clinton bases her work on dialogue which is tantamount to our process and on very hard work and our work is very precise and we believe that hard work is the way to fully create a performance. I understand that she is not the president yet but she will be!
UNIVERSES: Our process is what a President should be. Open to all views and able to take a little bit of this and a little bit of that to arrive at a collective vision.
HowlRound: Describe your process in a haiku or limerick.
Double Edge Theatre: Beyond our limits Lies a dreaming metaphor Reached only by flight OR We train and we study Inward and outward we go From there we author OR Freedom and presence From the imagination We create new worlds
UNIVERSES: There is nothing wrong Being lost in the moment The real shit lives there This workshop was livestreamed on #NEWPLAY TV—see video below:
UNIVERSES Workshop Description: UNIVERSES focused on Ensemble-Building. The company opened with a short performance of ten minutes to give workshop participants a quick snapshot of who the collaborators in the UNIVERSES ensemble are as individuals within a collective and to demonstrate the strength of the collective of the individuals within it. The object of the workshop was to find the value in each story and demonstrate how each individual has a place in the group; and how every group needs clearly defined individuals for a clearer snapshot of the makeup of our global communities.
Double Edge Theatre Workshop Description: The ensemble led a workshop/demonstration of its original creation methodology for participants and observers. Using elements of physical training, object work, and ensemble process, Double Edge actors (with participants) layered together a 3-5 minute etude. The workshop was directed by founder/ Artistic Director Stacy Klein, and led by ensemble actors Carlos Uriona, Matthew Glassman, and Jeremy Louise Eaton.
ArtsEmerson: The World On Stage, in association with Howlround: a Center for the Theater Commons and The Public Theater's Under the Radar Festival, presents a combustible combination of theatre, film, music, workshops and live-streamed events. Completely housed in ArtsEmerson’s Paramount Center in downtown Boston, The Next Thing (TNT) Festival (FEB 15-24) creates an unprecedented opportunity to dive deep into the world of contemporary ensemble performance. For more information about the festival, click here.