2019/9/1（Sun.）2:30PM with after performance discussion
Words from the Director
The core concept, from the very beginning, is "time."
Time is an abstract concept, but can be substantially felt in our lives, particularly when love, loss and death approaches.
"Giving myself a hard time" has always been the driving force of creativity. Like gambling, I place two bets in Re: Dear Life: to tell four stories in a single evening and to use a large amount of language in describing the scenes.
Why Alice Munro? When the theater approached me, I was working on Chekov's Three Sisters and noticed that Munro had been dubbed as "the Chekov of Canada." The decision was thus made.
Afterwards, I carried Dear Life in my backpack day in day out but had only read less than two stories within half a year.
I would recommend her Hateship, Friendship, Courtship, Loveship, Marriage for readers who are not familiar with Munro. It would be even better if they can find the Chinese edition translated by Chang Jang.
All the four stories in Re: Dear Life are set in Taoyuan. I did not conduct any serious field study but simply looked up for some materials and walked around.
Are the four stories in any way related to each other? No. They are more like four movements in a symphony. By the way, there are 15 musicians on the stage, and 12 of them are performers.
All of these four sections focus on the concerns about human beings’ activities on the land, which construct so called stories.
"Land" is an even more abstract concept than "time" and it's even more difficult to find substantial descriptions: The Fan Chiang family in Xinwu, the former military dependents' villages in Guishan, the story of stream piracy of Tahan River, the sealed-off nuclear weapon experimental ground in Longtan, the RCA-related soil pollution in Taoyuan City…All these historical details are weaved and entangled together. How can you describe it with such a simple phrase as "concerns about the land"?
In compliance with the tour to France, the stage has been modified and so has the videos. However, lives remain unchanged, that is, constantly changing toward the unknown.
On the Metro, a girl with flower is on her way to visit her mother’s grave, she recalls the tales of her mother's three former husbands, told by her mother while she was losing memory due to a stroke. Her mother's first marriage took place when she was pregnant at 17, it ended in a divorce, she re-married at 27 with a war veteran who was the father of the girl, he disappeared 10 years after their marriage; her mother joked about how she would encounter a major event every 10 years. The girl's stepfather was a co- worker of her mother and was 10 years younger than her, he passed away when her mother was 57. By the age of 67, 3 years after being bedridden, she had a wry smile, "what a nuance that I still have 10 years to live". When the Metro stops at Taipei Main Station, the girl transfers to a local train to the cemetery.
Irrigation ponds were everywhere in the neighborhood of my hometown, some of which turned into fish farms, while some being filled in. I have a twin sister who bears no resemblance to me; I was the smarter of the two, while her only forte was the knowledge of the ecological systems of the irrigation pond, filthy creatures that would give me goosebumps just by thinking of them. She liked to follow me around during our school days, fortunately I left home for college in the North and was able to get rid of her stupid smile. One day, I got a phone call from her.
At the end of a hot and humid summer, a woman with cancer participates in a cleansing as an exorcism ritual performed by psychics, her husband, a head of district is out searching for her remedy. The woman encounters her former piano teacher at the waiting room of a hospital, who tells the story of her elopement years back. Back home, while finding her husband gossiping feverishly with his friend, she spots a jacket that is hung improperly, which seems like a man with a slanted shoulder, she breaks into laughter and decided to leave
What kind of a past does a middle-aged cleaning lady have? What kind of story was inscribed in the pattern of her tattoos? Drug buddies from the youth, the reclusive marriage life at the mountainside, the joy that came with a baby, kindness of the small town folks; are these secrets in her life? or is her life a secret itself?
Shakespeare’s Wild Sisters Group
Founded in the summer of 1995, Shakespeare's Wild Sisters Group owes its name to the fictional character in Virginia Woolf’s novel A Room of One’s Own, meaning to liberate women’s talents from the oppression of patriarchy. Limiting itself to no specific issues or conventional aesthetics, SWSG takes materials from all arts inspiring to create original theatrical works. Having been to Hong Kong, Macau, Beijing, Shanghai, Busan, Tokyo, Berlin, Singapore, Kobe, Paris, and New York, SWSG has been invited by various cities and countries to perform, and takes an important role in international city culture and artistic exchange for many years.
The SWGS has now issued over forty theatrical works to date. Zodiac, written and directed by WANG Chia-ming, was selected Top 10 in the 1st Taishin Performing Arts Awards. The 2007 production Tsen, received a Top 10 Performing Arts nomination and Special Jury Award in the 6th Taishin Arts Awards. In 2008, Baboo’s directed work Hsu Yen-ling × Sylvia Plath and WANG Chia-ming’s directed work Listen to Me, Please~ Deluxe extended version were both nominated Top 10 in the 7th Taishin Performing Arts Awards, the former presented again in Avignon Off Festival, France in 2009, and earned high praises from former Chair of the Festival Bernard Faivre d’Arcier. Director WANG Chia-ming’s Once, upon Hearing the Skin Tone received first prize in the 8th Taishin Performing Arts Award.
Organizer: National Theater and Concert Hall
Producer & Performer: Shakespeare’s Wild Sisters Group
◎Approx. 120 minutes without an intermission.
◎The program is subject to change.
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