When one is working on a performance one must work with the wastness of ones universe, the endless eternity of things. And little by little cut out the unwanted. Directing in the first step is a selective process.
First you have to select a play, or in the post-modern a subject or a mother-object or anything from the endless eternity of things.
And than you must realise that your choosen subject or text could be related, paired up or juxtaposed with yet again the endless eternity of things. So you have too pick and choose again.
This part of the process is what we might call performance research. At this stage we flirt with all possible components of our piece.
Lets stick with Julia: at a first glance she is just a pretty face with suicidal tendencies. We all remember her on the balkony and perhaps her death. She isnt even a typical role-dream.
She is 14, Italian, living in Verona - according to Shakespeare, who was writing about her in the 1600.
If I was to direct her today, regardless if I am to do it as a performance or classicaly I need to ask the question:
Why is her story relevant? And give myself many banal answers:
- Becouse it is about love
- about youth
- about freedom
- about violence
- about family and society
- about moral issues
- about suicide
- about loosing virginity
- about will
- about growing up
- about sacrifice
Just to bring up a few. I will start analysing her through these points, hopefully together with my actors. What they think about their own characters will be integrated in my directorial concept.
And than there are some more difficult questions: do I want to re-tell this story or performatively analyse it? The fact that I have two characters playing one role lends itself to to opportunty to really create a performance laboratory. To juxtapose them, to make them critical of eachother using meta-techniques, to explore the poetic language in a XXI century context. All these are tempting, but are very likely to take away from the storytelling.
Is Julia an emo?