above: URL vs. IRL in rehearsal, photo by Raven Bartlett;
right: URL vs IRL, photo by Katerina Klavon
What is a dramaturg?
I think of myself as a caretaker of the play - does the play need someone to give the actors resources about the historical context? Does the play need someone to help create a space where the playwright feels safe and fully equipped to develop or produce that play? Does the play need someone to create a way for the audience to be fully primed and prepared to engage with its questions and themes? Does the play need an expert on World of Warcraft for the team to talk to? The list goes on. As a dramaturg, I am dedicated to helping make space for true collaboration between everyone in the rehearsal room, and to the creation of new work.
See below for samples of my production dramaturgy work:
LGBTQ Social Hour
I led a weekly session within the Digital Renaissance Project for LGBTQ kids and teenagers to come together and talk about queer issues and our own identities with adult artists in the project. Its primary purpose was to serve as an affinity space for trans artists and a safe place for trans teens to talk about their identity and express it fully and without fear of rejection.
We covered issues like queer representation in the media, pieces of LGBTQ history like Stonewall, gender presentation and identity, what it means to come out, and the changes we want to see in the world when it comes to acceptance of LGBTQ people.
(graphic by Andres Poch)