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Bobby Brewer-Wallin

My Case Is Altered or Bodies of Elizabeth

Exploration of the Latin prefix trans is the impetus for the body of work that looks at the physical and transgressive nature of the artist in society.  What happens when the other is seen in the role of hero, lover, or leader instead of the maid, soldier, or attendant? What changes for the actor to go beyond, to transform, to cross the line into a role that was previously unavailable? How does she shift the paradigm or learn to dance happily within it? What changes for the audience to witness the other on stage in a role that is so radically and visually different?  Sourcing texts from Aeschylus, Dekker & Middleton, Marlowe, and Shakespeare, as well as the way trans informs our current perception of gender identity and body image, I plan to engage with this LARC community to complete preliminary visual research for My Case Is Altered or Bodies of Elizabeth, a new performance piece in the early stages of development.

I will read a core group of theatrical texts (The Oresteia, The Roaring Girl, Edward the Second, and Julius Caesar) and through a variety of methodologies generate visual research in response to these texts. This visual research is the beginning of source material to design costumes for My Case Is Altered or Bodies of Elizabeth, collaboration with theatre colleagues Struan Leslie (Head of Movement at the Royal Shakespeare Company) and Lisa-Gaye Dixon (Associate Professor University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign) in the fall 2014.  I will collect visual research images from library resources (art and photography books) and online from museum collections and relevant databases. This is the first look at this subject material for me and I plan to use this summer to dig deep to uncover a multitude of images to fuel the design work for My Case Is Altered or Bodies of Elizabeth.