ANNE BOGART and ROOM
Anne Bogart talks about Virginia Woolf and the creation of ROOM.
How important is Virginia Woolf and her work to you as an artist?
Virginia Woolf is one of the key influences upon my own development as an
artist and a person in the world. Her writing introduced me to the power
of words to lift the experience of living into dimensions that I had never
known before. She created different ways of perceiving time and space
that I could enter while reading her books. With her guidance I was able
to experience layers of perception hitherto hidden to me.
When did you first develop an interest in Virginia Woolf and her work?
To the Lighthouse was the first book of Woolf’s that I read. I was
probably fifteen years old. She took me firmly by the collar and dragged
me into new territory. I was permanently altered by these experiences.
What were the main challenges of bringing an adaption of the writings of
Virginia Woolf to life on the stage?
The text we chose for Room does not tell a traditional story. And yet the
journey for the audience must be a compelling and gripping one. It is
Ellen Lauren’s brilliant sense of storytelling makes this possible.
You once remarked Ellen Lauren was the only actor who could pull off the
role in Room. What is it about Ellen as an artist that makes this so?
As an actress Ellen is fierce and courageous and yet she also has the
ability to bring an intense lightness of being into the roles she
inhabits. I have never experienced any actor who could differentiate one
moment from the next with such acuity, intelligence and passion as she.
The role in Room demands delicacy and stringency as well as clarity and a
rapport with the audience. Ellen can do all of the above.
This is the second collaboration between Women’s Project and SITI
Company. What do you enjoy about working with team WP?
Julie Crosby is full of a contagious enthusiasm for theater, she has a
wicked sense of humor and the courage to walk bravely into any room and
stand up for what is right. She has gathered a formidable team around her
who shares her appetites and makes working at the Women’s Project a
Join Anne Bogart & Ellen Lauren for a post-performance discussion on Tuesday, March 22nd & Wednesday, March 23rd.
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Photo of Anne Bogart by Ellen M. Rosenberry, The J. Paul Getty Trust