At the core of GLOBAL CONNECTIONS is the desire to build bridges between U.S. theatre professionals and their counterparts abroad, to identify theatre professionals who will further the growth and advancement of the field, and to create opportunities for the U.S. theatre field to engage in international conversations. During Round 6 of the program, our grantees exemplified these aspirations. Learn more about their projects below!
Cornerstone Theatre Company
Collaboration with Stut Theatre and the Clinic
Building upon their collaboration in March 2017, Cornerstone Theater Company hosted six artists from the Stut Theater and Van der Hoeven Clinic, (both based in Utrecht, Netherlands) in Los Angeles, California. During Fall 2018, they participated in an exchange of methodology, art making, experiential learning, and planning around a future collaboration. While in Los Angeles, the international artists participated as both contributors and observers to Cornerstone’s community-engaged theatre-making residency in Watts, a 2.12-square mile neighborhood in South Los Angeles. Their shared objective created a clear path for an 18 to 24-month international collaborative residency to make a new play. Their new community engaged theatrical work is planned to premier at the eighth International Community Arts Festival (ICAF) in Rotterdam, Netherlands in March of 2020.
Writer, director and actor, Zoey Martinson, traveled to Berlin, Germany with her company Smoke & Mirrors Collaborative to continue development of #HASHTAGPROJECT with a creative team from the U.S., Germany and China. The #HashtagProject is a theatrical experiment in the creation of extremist movements and online protests. A collaboration between theatre artists and interactive technology designers, #HashtagProject translates online social interactions into an immersive and surprising live performance event where the audience makes the decisions about what happens next.
The Rule of the World
Margarita Blush traveled to Sofia, Bulgaria to work with renowned Bulgarian scenographer, Svila Velichkova, on the conceptual framework, aesthetic, and design of The Rule of the World, an original theatre production that examined the themes of injustice and disillusionment. The title was inspired by a quote from Kafka’s iconic book, The Trial: "Depressing view…The lie made into the rule of the world.” The show featured live performance, puppetry, movement, and original script, scenography, and music.
Community-based theatre practitioners, Touchstone Theatre, traveled to Goleniów, Poland to meet and work in tandem with Teatr Brama as they planned for and executed their annual theatre festival, Bramat. While in residency, Touchstone personnel observed practices used in the realization of Bramat, particularly practices wherein Brama’s artists worked alongside Goleniów community members in developing performances for the festival. In addition, this Bramat hosted Caravan Next, a European Union-funded Social Community Theatre collaborative that featured some of Europe’s top community-based practitioners, which allowed for a broader cross-pollination of Touchstone methodologies with those of Caravan Next members.
Hills of Salt and Sugar
U.S. object theater director, Emily Mendelsohn, and Ugandan short story writer Doreen Baingana spent weeks in Kampala adapting Baingana's story about a woman's journey across Kampala to sell used clothes. This workshop helped them find shared vocabulary across discipline and culture, as they work towards a new object theatre piece that explores migration, home and memory through everyday journeys in Kampala and San Francisco.
the earth, that is sufficient
Annalisa Dias and DeLesslin George-Warren continued their artistic exploration of the effects of global colonialism and unrestrained capitalism on all forms of life experiencing the impending signs of catastrophic climate change, in a new collaboration with Sámi Center for Contemporary Art in northern Norway. They used the residency to speak with local Sami (indigenous) communities about the already unfolding effects of climate change in their communities. This residency had two goals: 1. to create a multimedia album using found and processed sounds and visual media presented through an interactive website, and 2. to complete a crucial stage of research in contemplative arts practice leading to the production of Annalisa's full-length play, The Earth, That is Sufficient, to be produced by The Welders in 2019.
Conference of the Birds
Wendy Jehlen co-created The Conference of the Birds, an evening-length movement theatre work inspired by the epic poem of Farid Ud din Attar and embodying stories gathered from modern-day refugees and other migrants. Collaborating artists came together from eight countries and five continents. Commissioned by Boston Center for the Arts, created by ANIKAYA Dance Theater, funded by the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art, Jacob's Pillow, New England Foundation for the Arts, The Boston Foundation, and the James K. Spriggs Charitable Foundation, a Fidelity Charitable donor-advised fund, and the Kates Foundation.