Orlando

A project by Amit Drori following the text by Virginia Woolf

The novel Orlando was written during 1927-1928, as a “fantastic biography”, which follow the life of Orlando – an English nobleman, from his youth in the late 16th century and up to “the present” (1928 – the time that the novel was completed.)

The “biographer” himself, is present in the novel as a subject, lost in the twilights between the “historical” and the “fantasy”.

Along 4 centuries, and its processes, both social and individual, Orlando developed into a journey tail of an individual through cultural perspective, and historical overview through subjective point of view. Thus, Orlando is a symphony of metamorphoses, on the ground of the eternal conflict of individual sense of time, and calendar time axis. During his life journey, Orlando transform from a man to a woman, expending his quest of liberty beyond any physical, sexual and social limitations. Orlando, like Woolf – his creator, is found to be more sophisticated and multicolored as long as we try to map his mind.

Looking at a character’s mind as a whole universe, always trigger me for a stage work. In my perspective, the fact that the theatrical event occur in limited space and time, transform any act to a metaphor of the human mind and emotion. I was fascinated with the challenge of bringing such fantasy, and such historical sequence into these limitations and possibilities. In result, my adaptation deals with the issue of “traveling without moving”: Concentrating the performance on a work of a single actress is the root of the adaptation of Orlando to stage. The life and mind of a single self turn to a whole universe as we are looking at the world from an individual prism.

From that point of view, the performance moves between the reality of the events, and the internal, mental reality of Orlando. His / her mind is a reflective universe in which poetry is oxygen, emotion echoing with landscape, history becomes transparent and human conciseness reflects through it.

Orlando is a visual stage work, conduct by multidisciplinary artistic team, and dissolving together variety of forms of artistic expressions. The project includes a work of animated and still objects, composing together installations and landscapes as if from Orlando’s biography and mind. On other layers of the stage and story, Orlando’s visions and emotional landscapes are recreated in projected mediums, using deferent types of projectors to bring light qualities to a physical experience. With a single human present on stage, all objects, projections and images become an ensemble of phantoms, moving on parallel journeys in the search of the foundations of human process. The enigmatic and dynamic movement of the human spirit is a great discovery on this search.

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