I can’t believe it has taken me so long to become aquatinted with the work of Jeanette Winterson. Here is an excerpt from an interview she did with (the fabulous!) Eleanor Wachtel on CBC’s Writers & Company.
Language, more than an exchange of information…
“For me, language is a freedom. As soon as you have found the words with which to express something, you are no longer incoherent, you are no longer trapped by your own emotions, by your own experiences; you can describe them, you can tell them, you can bring them out of yourself and give them to somebody else. That is an enormously liberating experience, and it worries me that more and more people are learning not to use language; they’re giving in to the banalities of the television media and shrinking their vocabulary, shrinking their own way of using this fabulous tool that human beings have refined over so many centuries into this extremely sensitive instrument. I don’t want to make it crude, I don’t want to make it into shopping-list language, I don’t want to make it into simply an exchange of information: I want to make it into the subtle, emotional, intellectual, freeing thing that it is and that it can be.”
What art does is to coax us away from the mechanical and towards the miraculous. The so-called uselessness of art is a clue to its transforming power. Art is not part of the machine. Art asks us to think differently, see differently, hear differently, and ultimately to act differently, which is why art has moral force. Ruskin was right, though for the wrong reasons, when he talked about art as a moral force. Art is not about good behaviour, when did you last see a miracle behave well? Art makes us better people because it asks for our full humanity, and humanity is, or should be, the polar opposite of the merely mechanical. We are not part of the machine either, but we have forgotten that. Art is memory — which is quite different [from] history. Art asks that we remember who we are, and usually that asking has to come as provocation — which is why art breaks the rules and the taboos, and at the same time is a moral force. ~Jeanette Winterson
My apologies for disappearing but I have had a VERY busy summer!
In June, my family and I moved across the country to relocate to Montreal, Quebec. Montreal has always been a second home for me as it is where my husband is from and where all his family still live and, as well, where I received my BFA in Theatre Performance at Concordia University many moons ago. But it still has been a major life-shift and one that requires a considerable adjustment period. Nevertheless, I am incredibly excited about the new opportunities and adventures that await.
Shortly after arriving in Montreal, I was off to London UK where I spent the month of August at The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama where I began my teacher training in Fitzmaurice Voicework®. More to come on that in a future post!
I also promise to fill you in on my PhD studies in Theatre and Drama Studies at the University of Birmingham UK which I will formally begin at the end of this month.
And watch for announcements regarding upcoming workshops that are in the planning stages but tentatively slated to start next month!
Hurray for new beginnings!
“The beginning is the most important part of the work.” ~Plato
Check out the trailer for SoMo Theatre’s show Elinor and Marianne, May 10 and 11 at the BC Buds Spring Arts Fair at the Firehall Theatre. Here’s the blurb;
“Elinor and Marianne” is inspired by Jane Austen’s “Sense and Sensibility” and follows the Dashwood sisters, after their father’s death, when they are forced to leave their very comfortable home and relocate to more modest surroundings. Though the piece stays true to Austen’s use of language and maintains the integrity of the characters, the location of the piece is set in 2013 on the DTES at a bus stop, where the two sisters wait for their connection on the last leg of their journey. Contemporary songs are woven into the narrative to further explore the juxtaposition 18th C England with that of more modern romantic ideals.
We are excited to anounce that we will be part of the BC Buds Spring Arts Fair 2013 at the Firehall Arts Centre! We will be presenting Elinor and Marianne, inspired by the contrasting heroines in Jane Austenʼs classic novel Sense and Sensibility, this will be an imagining of what the Dashwood sisters may have encountered on their journey from their very comfortable life to that of the much more modest Barton Cottage. The action takes place at a bus stop on the Downtown Eastside on Vancouver BC in 2013. The scene will become an addendum to the story of sorts and will emerge out of what we imagine the sisters may have been feeling, experiencing and sharing with each other as they made this difficult transition after being displaced from the only home they have ever known.
We will be weaving Austen’s words with contemporary songs, specifically music from the 1980’s “New Romanticism” movement in Britain. The music will be performed by the actors and woven into the narrative in an attempt to further explore the juxtaposition of Austen’s time and place of 18th century England with that of more modern romantic ideals, exploring how these worlds intersect.
May 10-12 2013 at the Firehall Arts Centre, Vancouver BC
“We have neither of us anything to tell; you, because you communicate, and I, because I conceal nothing” ~Marianne Dashwood