Muriel’s Montreal Diary – entry two

Muriel Romanes is the Artistic Director of Stellar Quines Theatre Company. Muriel has been developing Ana for over five years and is currently in Montreal for the rehearsals and opening of the show.

I have just been asked to prepare notes for the programme and we need to write about the journey we have made over the last five years.

Looking back it is only now at the end of the journey that I think I know what “cultural differences” really means in regard to the different ways of theatre in Quebec, Romania and Scotland.

I think it is possible that sometimes the journey is more interesting than the end product and now as we come to the end, it is the memory of myself and Clare Duffy talking through ideas and structures, the exquisite actors in Romania who were so talented and hungry for new ideas and new experiences.

The development of ANA - Romania 2007

A group photo from a workshop to develop ANA in Romania, October 2007

How they walked us through their city Timisoara to tell us of the days of Revolution, the slaughter of people on the steps of the cathedral when the church doors were slammed shut on them by the priests. The sizzling of the hot wax from the church candles as it dripped into water troughs . The downfall of Ceausescu which took place in the square outside the National Theatre of Timisoara where we were working and in which many of the actors took part. The day they taped me up during the workshop in the Traverse and when I cut and pasted (for real) the speeches of Hedda Gabler, Marilyn Monroe and Nora from Dolls House and how we used the text to play a scene between these characters.

Muriel Romanes tapes up on ANA workshop, Romania 2007

The day they taped Muriel up during the workshop in the Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh

Megan Baker the costume designer and Philip Pinsky the composer and sound designer walked over Mount Royal today and visited St. Josephs Oratory and were as impressed as I was at the heat and first sight of the hall of lit candles.

We are just about to prepare a supper for the Scottish team and I must sign off now until the next time.