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The
Open Page


Theatre - Women - Myth

 

CONTENTS

 

The Open Page - EDITORIAL NOTE

Susan Bassnett (England) - BUILDING BRIDGES ACROSS TIME

Geddy Aniksdal (Norway) - WOMEN - MYTH - THEATRE

Susan Bassnett (England) - REMEMBERING THEATRE

Beatriz Camargo (Colombia) - THIRTEEN YEARS ON THE PATH OF MYTH

Cristina Castrillo (Argentina/Switzerland) - AN ANCIENT HERITAGE

Gerd Christiansen (Denmark/Norway) - RECONQUERING OF ARCHETYPAL LANDSCAPES

Anne-Sophie Erichsen (Norway) - ARCHETYPES AS A REFERENCE IN ACTORS' WORK

Nor Hall (USA) - DAUGHTERS OF MEMORY

Kirsten Hastrup (Denmark) - PRESENTING THE PAST

Zofia Kalinska (Poland) - MY WORK WITH MYTHS

Brigitte Kaquet (Belgium) - HIPPARCHIA: ON THE FRINGES OF MYTH

Elena Marino (Italy) - BARTERS: A PATH TOWARDS OURSELVES

Lea Melandri (Italy) - THE LANGUAGE OF THE GODDESS

Dijana Milosevic (Former Yugoslavia) - THEATRE - WOMEN - MYTH

Tanith Noble (France) - LONG-LASTING FIGURES

Beate Reker (Germany) - FROM A LETTER

Guandaline Sagliocco (France/Norway) - MYTHOLOGY AS STORYTELLING THEATRE

Beatriz Seibel (Argentina) - A HEROINE OF THE MID TWENTIETH CENTURY

Ranjabati Sircar (India) - CASSANDRA: RECLAIMING THE VOICE

Maria Teresa Telara (Italy) - IN THE LABYRINTH

Siân Thomas (Wales) - REFLECTING UPON MEDEA

Julia Varley (England/Denmark) - MYSTERIES, CONFESSIONS AND PERSONAL MYTHS

Linda Wise (England/France) - A DIALOGUE THAT CONTINUES

Cristina Wistari (Italy/Bali) - PRINCES AND WITCHES

The Open Page - NOTES ON CONTRIBUTORS

 

 

EDITORIAL

 

Myths and mythology were noticeably present in the performances and talks during the International Magdalena Festival in 1994. Many other festivals, meetings and performances are happening with myths as titles or central figures - the language used tends to be mythical rather than historical. So with this first issue of The Open Page we have invited different women, actors, directors to write about their relationship with myth in connection to theatre.

 

To facilitate the writing, some of the articles have used the following questions as reference: 1. Why did you choose to work with a myth as a theme or character? 2. What does "myth" mean to you? 3. What relationship do you see between myth and modernity, between myth and contemporary experience? 4. Do you think that the creation of our myths will contribute to a new language and to the creation of our own history as women in theatre?

 

It has been impossible to find a logical order in the jungle of myths which appear from the articles. Echo and Narcissus. Persephone and Mnemosyne mix with the Wild Woman and personal memories, with cosmic poetics and goddess culture, with Eva Peron and Balinese witches. References to practical experiences and theoretical discussions came together in a stream of words and thoughts which are expressed in poetical forms as well as daily accounts. We decided therefore to introduce the issue with final part of Susan Bassnett's inaugural address to the Magdalena Festival, Cardiff, September 1994 and then to follow the alphabetical order of the authors' surnames.

 

In collecting the articles we have given great importance to the international diversity, but the choice of printing in one language has forced us to confront the problem of translation.

 

There are many opinions on the paths to follow when translating. We are aware of the difficulties and consequences of what necessarily becomes an incorrect version of the original. Some of the articles are written in English by women whose mother tongue is not English. Other articles have been translated. We have tried to be faithful to the meaning of the texts, even when not respecting English scholarly form and grammar.

 

Comments and suggestions for the future of the Journal are welcome. Good reading.

 

January 1996,

Geddy Aniksdal, Maggie Gale, Teresa Ralli, Julia Varley

 

 

Foreword

 

Ten years ago Jill Greenhalgh organised the first festival and from then the Magdalena Project started to exist, first as an idea and then as a reality. Already during the first year of the Magdalena Project's existence the need for a newsletter was felt in order to keep the communication going between women who had been involved in the Festival and initial meetings. At first it was just a folded piece of paper, hand typed and photocopied and sent to those who paid for the postage. The first newsletters contained only short and immediate information about activities, achievements and ideas about theatre performance and workshops, about family changes and the women's whereabouts.

 

Then the Newsletter grew to the format it has today, four pages of well laid out print with editorials, articles, news, photographs and critical forums. Themes for development were chosen and the Newsletter began to have the function of providing information, documentation, news and discussion. At first it was necessary to conquer the space, then fill it with descriptions of what we had been doing during the year. Then the written words were used to ask questions and then, slowly, the space was no longer enough.

 

During every annual meeting of the Magdalena Project's International Advisory Group, the Newsletter and other forms of documentation are discussed. Looking back at last year's activity and especially at the Magdalena Festival in 1994 we noticed that women involved in the Project were approaching words, theory, explanations and analysis with more curiosity and familiarity than before and that this demanded more space. We also felt the need to stimulate women to write so as to start building their own memory and critical view within theatre history. On one hand the articles written were not finding enough print space, on the other hand a little encouragement was needed to produce even more material. So we came upon the idea of this Journal.

 

The Open Page aims to give space to longer, more analytical articles, leaving the quick, elastic, informative form to the Newsletter. The aim is also to create an 'open page' in which many experiences and voices can join and a collective vision, a transforming knowledge, can be useful to our practice in theatre. If the Magdalena Project aims to help the work of women in theatre, The Open Page aims to help the words, the memory, the reflection, the thoughts of women working in theatre.

 

The Journal is not ambitious in a formal way, we want to achieve it with very few means and produce one number every year with enough copies for all those who are interested. However, the Journal is ambitious in wanting to contribute towards creating new and different words for women in theatre to write their own history. Each issue will be dedicated to a theme and the first one we have chosen is:

Women - Theatre - Myth.

 

 

 

 

 

 

no. 1 January 1996

 

 

 

Editorial Board:

Geddy Aniksdal, Maggie Gale,

Teresa Ralli, Julia Varley

Cover:

Marco Donati

 

With special thanks to:

Grenland Friteater

Odin Teatret

 

This first issue of the journal was published

by The Magdalena Project, Wales, UK

 

 

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