An interview with Holly Simonsen

Photos of the Great Salt Lake, Holly Simonsen

Photos above and quote below by Holly Simonsen  

Working with the Great Salt Lake is a landscape of lines. There are wake lines, wave lines, debris lines; and the landscape can be read just like a poetic line. Moreover, because the line is physical, you can inhabit the line. You can be physically present inside of language.

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An interview with Donnie Mather
Kim Weild

I am excited most and come alive most when I am meeting up against an idea that may come from another realm, and in its realm it is fully formed mind you, and I take it to a different context and translate it, or some might say, adapt it. –Donnie Mather

The Adaptations Project, founded by Donnie Mather, is a project that involves working with a rotating roster of associate artists to adapt, or translate, works from media other than theatre into pieces performed as theatre. Kaddish (or The Key in the Window), originally performed as part of the New York International Fringe Festival in 2009, is a play that adapts Allen Ginsberg’s poem “Kaddish” into a one-person show; Rising: A Dance Play, projected to premiere in NY in 2013, uses Yoko Ono’s album of the same name about Hiroshima as a source to create a piece of theatre where each of the songs is theatricalized—a dance theatre scene, a trio, a solo, a monologue. The source material doesn’t have to be a work of art. A Show of Force, conceived and created by Donnie, is devised from the work of journalists and interviews with war heroes as well as work of playwrights such as Charles Mee and William Shakespeare. Behind The Adaptations Project is the idea that inspiration could be found in a coffee cup, or a series of photographs, or a Kandinsky painting, and be the basis for a theatre piece. It gives the artists involved a kind of freedom—a freedom of expressivity. Adapting pieces that fall outside the realm of theatre also raises the larger question of what theatre is in the first place. The process of adaptation involves identifying, working within, and challenging the limits that define theatre; in so doing, there’s a possibility of creating something that is new. Ultimately the process of adaptation and of theatre has to do with telling a story.

To read the interview, click here.

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