The Business of Busyness

Anne Bogart's picture

Several years ago the performance artist and composer Laurie Anderson spoke with my directing students at Columbia University and advised them never to relate their dreams to other people. “No one ever wants to hear the details of your dreams,” she said. Later I shared Laurie’s insight with Leon Ingulsrud, my colleague and Co-Artistic Director of SITI Company, who then proposed a few other things that people never want to hear about: “People never want to hear about how busy you are or how tired you are,” he said.

The creative balance between two possible states of being

Anne Bogart's picture

A number of years ago I co-taught a class for graduate directors and actors at Columbia University with Kristin Linklater.  One afternoon I mentioned to Kristin that in order to catch a Metro North train I would need to leave class a few minutes before the scheduled 5 p.m. finish.  We agreed that she would lead the final hour and that I would participate until I had to leave.

Uninterrupted Connection

Anne Bogart's picture

Several years ago I conducted a ten-day Viewpoints workshop at PlayMakers Repertory Company in Chapel Hill, North Carolina with members of the PlayMakers Company and graduate students from the University of North Carolina.  At the time I was furiously studying neuroscience in preparation for a SITI production about the brain entitled Who Do You Think You Are.  My friend Bonnie Raphael, the vocal coach at Playmakers, mentioned that the neurophysiologist R.

Persians Diary September 4, 2014

Ellen Lauren's picture

Impressions of a (Press) Opening

Persians-Getty Villa Sept 3, 2014

 God knows we wondered over the weeks of rehearsal if this could really be done.  Reading and studying 3 different plays over a year and half ago, we looked at each other and thought-IF we choose this one,  how the Hell are we going to do this?  But that very same sentiment is why, in part, we faced it, chose it-Persians.

Persians Diary Tuesday September 2nd 2014

Gian-Murray Gianino's picture

We started again yesterday after a luxurious and much-needed two days off. Our bodies and brains needed it - some time to rest and gain a little perspective on all that we have been immersed in.

Persians Diary August 22nd 2014

Gian-Murray Gianino's picture

How does it all begin… Bondo’s beginning line from Antigone rings
through my mind. I love that line, repeated over and over again in
that script, and how Bondo delivered it.

Where are we?
What are we doing?
What are we saying?
How are we saying it?
Who are we talking to?
What does it mean?

And… of course… how does it all end?

Persians Diary August 1st 2014

Gian-Murray Gianino's picture

While a child or children aren’t as large a part of the story of this piece as they are in Trojan Women there are a few lines that speak of them. For instance, describing the Persians waiting for news of the outcome of the war -

“Their wives and children mark the days
Shuddering as the time drags on.”

Persians Diary - Day 1 - 7/21/14

Gian-Murray Gianino's picture

Well, another stage in SITI’s journey with the Greeks and the Getty Villa began today. The challenge this time around is to do a full production of Aeschylus’ The Persians, or as we have decided to title our version, “Persians”. The first extant play in the western canon, it is a challenge to be sure and, of course, one that we decided to embrace.

Persians Diary August 30th, 2014 (Posted On behalf of Emily Spalding)

Leon Ingulsrud's picture
Hello everyone,

Anne gave me an amazing note a few days ago with a sentiment I’d like to share.  She reminded me that, even in the midst of this tragic story, I can be open to experience joy onstage.  Wow. Right! As a young actor, the play gets the best of me sometimes…shuts me down in a way.  I make assumptions about the story, and about my role within it and am thus numbed to the experience of actually DOING the thing… discovering it as I go. It is OKAY to experience joy within it. In fact, I SHOULD do so, on behalf of the audience. My pleasure can be shared with them, created with and for them.  This is a profound notion for me, and a note not readily applied. Hopefully with time and experience…

PERSIANS journal for Thursday, August 28th

Leon Ingulsrud's picture

Today saw our first preview performance of Persians.

Working on plays at the Getty, we are faced in effect with two missions.


One is that we are charged with honoring the play as an artifact. An object that has survived the demolition derby of archeological history to reach us today in some version of “intact”. This mission is one where we in the SITI Company need a lot of help. As much as we bring our imagination and intellect and reading and researching to bear, we are dependent on the eyes and ears of the Getty staff, to help us. Guide us. And most importantly inspire us. I think it is safe to say that to a large degree we have succeeded in this mission with Persians.

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