Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Audition for The Other Shore

by Gao Xingjian, directed by Kym Moore

An ensemble of performers with an interest in and/or experience with body-centered styles of performance, including dance (particularly traditional South Asian movement and mudras, African dance, hip-hop and related forms and tap), singing, clowning and martial arts. Strong improvisational skills and the ability to play a musical instrument (especially percussion or wind instruments) is a plus. Additionally, a fluency in Chinese languages, Buddhist meditation practice and/or yoga is desired but certainly not required.

Please prepare a two-minute performance selection that best demonstrates your strengths as a performer. This might consist of (but is by no means limited to) a monologue, poem, song or dance combination. You will also be expected to read from the sides available, so please read the play in advance. Copies of the play are available in the Becker Library (on the second floor of Lyman Hall) and by emailing

Please Note
If cast, you must return early from Spring Break for tech at 11 AM on Sunday, March 29. There will also be Saturday afternoon rehearsals on February 14, February 28 and March 7.

All plays cast under the supervision of the Department of Theatre, Speech & Dance at Brown University are cast without regard to race, color or ethnic identity except when such identity is central to the production's thematic content.

About the Production
Since the play was literally written to train actors in a new form of contemporary Chinese theatre particular to Gao Xingjian's dramaturgy, actors can expect to be involved in a fairly rigorous rehearsal process. Rehearsals will involve intensive work in the following performance techniques: tripartitioned acting (Xingjian's own theory), Viewpoints, sensory actualization, mudras and vocalization. Though some training in acting is a plus, it is certainly not required, as the ensemble will collaboratively develop an entirely unique performance style from the ground up.

About the Play
The Other Shore is a one-act play that explores the human struggle to reach enlightenment. The play’s title refers to the concept of paramita or nirvana, the land of enlightenment in Buddhism. According to Buddhist belief, humans experience an actual visible life full of suffering, but by living according to the virtues of paramita—morality, patience, meditation and wisdom—they can cross the river of life to the other shore and experience enlightenment. The unconventional staging and characterizations shadow the solitary struggle for meaning and internal illumination.

About the Playwright
Gao Xingjian is an internationally celebrated Chinese emigré novelist, dramatist, critic, and recipient of the 2000 Nobel Prize in Literature. He is also a noted translator, stage director and painter. Born January 4, 1940 in Ganzhou (Jiangxi province) in eastern China, Xingjian fled his native country for France in 1987 after years of artistic censorship and persecution. Although the general position by the Chinese media towards Gao is silence, a 2001 criticism of his novel Soul Mountain by the Yangcheng Evening News (a state-run newspaper) deemed him an "awful writer" and called his winning of the Nobel Prize "ludicrous." The Chinese government officially regards Gao as an exiled dissident, and all of his works are banned.

1 comment:

Indrayudh said...

Sounds great. I don't know if I've got the time to do it (try out anyway), but I wish I did. Best of luck!