OrlandoMay Studio Theatre - 10.2016
Sarah Ruhl, from Virginia Woolf
In A Room of One’s Own, Virginia Woolf ponders the relationship between the masculine and feminine, corroborating Coleridge’s idea that “a great mind is androgynous.” She proposes that “Perhaps a mind that is purely masculine cannot create, any more than a mind that is purely feminine.”
In Woolf’s novel Orlando, a man is born and falls in love, and over the course of centuries finds himself becoming a woman. Using Sarah Ruhl’s adaptation as a starting point, my production approached gender with irreverance and nihilism, creating a space in which gender’s ultimate function is nothing more than as entertainment.
Drawing on the work of Goffman and the formal aesthetics of Noh theater, my production wondered about the essence of the human spirit, and where it lies within the masculine/feminine paradigm.
Orlando was presented in the May Studio Theatre at the University of Evansville, and was awarded the William A. Gumberts Award for Outstanding Artistic Achivement.