TJ LAB #1: A WORK-IN-PROGRESS PRESENTATION
Mark Lawes and Theatre Junction’s Company of Artists (Calgary)
Produced and presented by Theatre Junction
November 21-23, 2013
Mark’s writing for the stage is created organically out of a friction between fragments of history, visual art, contemporary dance, music, and an alphabet of material coming from dramaturgical research. All of this is put into motion through a process of improvisation.
Theatre Junction’s Company of Artists is a performance ensemble, which, since its inception in 2006, has presented itself as markedly international, multilingual, and multidisciplinary. Comprised of a unique combination of people, skills, disciplines, and backgrounds, the artistic company includes actors, dancers, musicians and visual artists. In 2012 Lawes was selected as a laureate under the auspices of the City of Paris and the l’Instituit français international art-in-residence program at Les Récollets, where his team of artists began work on the first part of the Supernova saga. With two previous national tours (2010’s On the Side of the Road and 2012’s Lucy Lost Her Heart) they are poised to bring their work to the international stage.
A short interview with Mark Lawes on the creation process
Q: Lab #1 is the first stage of creation for your new project, and this year you have decided to present the work-in-progress as an integral part of the creation process. Why?
ML: It creates a deadline and forces us to raise our asses! No seriously, it helps us to move from research to presentation quickly. I’m a big believer in creating by doing, and not over analyzing the work too much in the early stages. Just make it, present it, and see what happens.
Q: This must be a bit scary for the performers.
ML: Sure, it is in a way, but the performers I work with love risk. We all feel that vulnerability is essential to live performance. And besides, the mistakes we make are often interesting discoveries.
Q: How long will you work in the studio before the Lab #1 presentation?
ML: For two or three weeks, however I will already have worked on and off for a few months preparing research material for Lab #1.
Q: What happens after the Lab #1 presentation?
ML: I will begin to write a draft of the text, and in parallel with that I will work on the design elements – scenography, lights, music, costumes – which will then be integrated in Lab #2.
Q: When do you expect to premiere the new creation?
ML: Sometime during the 2014-2015 season, we are currently working on dates for a premiere in Europe and then in Calgary after that.
Q: Is it interesting for the audience to watch a Lab?
ML: Some of my most memorable theatre experiences were watching works in progress, you see the seeds of something being born, and this is beautiful. You become a part of the creation process; the observer changes what is being observed.