On 8 March 2012, International Women’s Day, Stellar Quines and the Québec Government in the UK hosted a pre show reception and post show drinks around the performance of ANA that evening at the Traverse Theatre in Edinburgh.
Thanks to the Québec Government in the UK for the pre show reception and thanks the British Council in Québec for post show drinks.
From left to the right: Linda Crooks, Executive Producer Traverse Theatre; Clare Duffy co-writer ANA, Muriel Romanes, Artistic Director Stellar Quines; Pierre Boulanger, Agent General Québec Government Office UK; Fiona Hyslop, MSP Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs; Maude Laflamme, Québec Government Office UK; Orla O’Loughlin, Artistic Director Traverse Theatre and Graham Sheffield, Director Arts British Council.
Clare Duffy, one of ANA’s co-writers, is running a writing workshop at the Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh on Saturday 3 March which will explore collaborative writing across languages and cultures. This is a unique opportunity to learn more about the creative collaborative process and we are delighted to announce that Clare’s Quebecois co-writer, Pierre Yves Lemieux will also be there. Clare has also been interviewed by the Traverse for this month’s TravCast, the writer’s podcast created by the theatre’s Literary Officer Jennifer Williams.
These are interesting busy times for Scottish theatre company Stellar Quines.
They are, as you read this, in the midst of premiering Ana, a new bilingual play by Scots writer Clare Duffy and Quebecois playwright Pierre-Yves Lemieux. Co-produced with French-Canadian company, Imago, Ana opened last Tuesday night at Theatre Epace Go in Montreal prior to a Scottish tour in spring 2012.
On the face of it there is nothing unusual about any of this.
After the world premiere opening of the wonderful, thought-provoking play ANA at Espace Go, I wisecracked that it should be subtitled Six Annas in Search of their Mother.
Later, reading director Serge Denoncourt’s program notes, I was gratified to see that he also paraphrased Pirandello to describe the show. The co-authors, Clare Duffy of Scotland and Pierre Yves Lemieux of Montreal spent three years working up a script based on a concept by Clare Schapiro of Montreal and Muriel Romanes of Scotland.
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.
We have come to the end of rehearsals and tomorrow we move into the theatre to have the first work through with the set and without any tech.
Round the table in Rehearsals for ANA
This will give the actors a chance to get used to the space. On Wednesday they will do the same and on Thursday the actors will be in costume parade and in the evening a run through and notes. Friday there will be a cue to cue technical. Serge gives really wonderful notes and encourages everyone to work in an ensemble way.
Last week EspaceGo gave a lunch for us all and we had lashings of smoked salmon and cream cheese and all washed down with rosé wine. In the evening Alain invited the entire Scottish contingent to his house for dinner which was delightful. Although we had a death defying journey there in Clare Schapiro’s husband’s Land Rover which was able to transport everyone to the other side of the Mount Royal in one journey.
Our two Artistic Directors, Clare (left) and Muriel (right)
I have a meeting with the Quebec writer Jennifer Tremblay and her translator Shelley Tepperman at the beginning of next week to talk about her play The List, which will be presented through Stellar Quines’ Rehearsal Room on Thursday 26 January 2012 at the Traverse theatre. I am also having a meeting with Martin Bowman this weekend to talk about A Live Bird in the Mouth, Stellar Quines’ next production.
This week Megan and Frances took a bus trip into the Laurentian Mountains and were dropped in the middle of nowhere, luckily they found a diner which all sounds a bit like an old movie scenario maybe Bus Stop?! But they had a crazy but good time. And Philip Pinsky went to Quebec City for the weekend to visit friends, while I walked the streets of Montreal looking for a knitting shop as diversion therapy.