Playwright-In-Residence

INTRODUCING OUR PLAYWRIGHT-IN-RESIDENCE!

Nightwood is thrilled to have Anna Chatterton as our Ontario Arts Council playwright-in-residence for the 2015-16 Season.

Anna Chatterton Biography
Anna Chatterton is a librettist, playwright and performer. Her play Within the Glass will be produced by Tarragon Theatre in January. She recently performed her solo show Quiver at Theatre Aquarius as part of their Studio series.
Anna writes and performs with the acclaimed feminist theatre collective Independent Aunties (with Evalyn Parry and Karin Randoja). The Aunties have created six shows together, produced by Theatre Passe Muraille, Buddies in Bad Times Theatre and the Theatre Centre. Their upcoming play Gertrude and Alice will be co-produced with Buddies in Bad Times Theatre in March.
As a librettist her work has been commissioned and produced by Canadian Opera Company, World Stage/Harbourfront Centre, The Banff Centre, Theatre Centre, Tapestry Opera, Urbanvessel, Voice ++ Festival, and The Sound Symposium. She has been nominated for Dora Mavor Moore Award for Best New Opera and thrice for the K.M. Hunter Award for Theatre.
Other upcoming productions include The Man Who Married Himself (Toronto Masque Theatre), Sweat for Centre for Contemporary Opera (NYC) and acting in Princess, written and directed by Sky Gilbert.
Anna has her MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Guelph and BFA in Theatre Performance from Concordia University.

Artist’s Statement
War terrifies me as a writer. I have very little connection to or life experience with war except by the news. Who am I to write about wars when I have never lived in one? This is the play I am too scared to write…and so, I am writing it.
The Kurdish Female Fighters (YPJ) were founded in 2013 as an autonomous women’s unit of the Kurdish army in Syria. It is estimated that female fighters form about 40% of the Kurdish forces defending Kobani. All of them are volunteers. They receive no funding from the international community and the women are reliant on the Kurdish community for supplies and food. It is said among Kurds that a female soldier is particularly potent as Islamic State fighters fear the idea of being killed by a woman because they believe they will then not go to heaven.
In 2014 a young female Canadian soldier (Gill Rosenberg) signed up to fight ISIS and trained and is currently fighting with the Kurdish female fighters. She connected with the women’s army through Facebook.  It is that easy these days to sign up for a war on the other side of the world—through social media.
I will be investigating two storylines in this new play; a Canadian woman who signs up to fight with the YPJ causing great friction with her pregnant daughter, and a female Kurdish soldier in combat. I will be working with a Kurdish collaborator to help accurately portray the character of the Kurdish soldier. I look forward to discovering a new way of collaborating in a new partnership for this play.

 

 


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