A workshop in partnership with ICON, Teatro Trieste Trentaquattro, PKD, & ChezActors.

Our third workshop for The Medusa Project is complete!
We gathered for this workshop at Teatro Trieste Trentaquattro, where we were supported by an amazing rehearsal space, as well as the first residency of the Filippo Arcelloni Theater Hostel! Piacenza opened their arms to us, not only in kindness and hospitality, but also down to the sheets on our beds and the food in our cupboards. A true display of community, and collaborative resourcing. We make nothing alone, and the city of Piacenza was as involved in this process as the performers on the stage.
We focused our training time at this workshop on The Viewpoints under the instruction of Anna Donnell. Our ensemble consisted of Piacenza based artists including Elisa Ferrari, Roberto Dassoni, Alice Robbi, Esmeralda Righi, Pietro Fenucci, Luca Favero, and Giorgio Bolla. We were also joined by Mexican artist Pablo Chavez, USA based artist, Rachel Charlee Hoffman, and reunited with one of our London based collaborators, Eliza Harris.

Over the course of our workshop time, we generated abstract performances, soundscapes, and movement sequences focusing on Medusa’s story through the lens of power. How do the power dynamics between different genders manifest in times of trauma and isolation? Where is there room for compassion when individuals play out toxic gender roles? How do people from different lived experiences embark on the same geographic journey, and process that journey through different emotional lenses? How can an individual use instances of trauma and oppression a situation renewed, revitalized, and ready to live again?


With this workshop, we pushed our exploration and integration of access design into our process even further. This included more focus placed on multilingual Audio Description and Open Captioning, the logistics of creating promenade performance that can be equitably experienced by people with low mobility, as well as resources and accommodations for performers and community members who are pregnant, or joining us with their children and families. Over the course of our collaboration with Teatro Trieste Trentaquattro and Anna Donnell, we were able to share a performance that was equipped with open captioning, integrated audio description, and a visual story and accessibility guide provided to all guests before the day of the performance.

The ensemble for this workshop consisted of a multi-generational, multi-disciplinary mixture of performers. Our process integrated original text, original music composition, and derived inspiration from text, music, and soundscape created by the ensemble from our January workshop in London.

With our third European workshop complete, our facilitators will focus on synthesizing what we have learned about our new devising method, and planning for the fourth and final Medusa workshop in Chicago this summer. The next 5 months we will be hard at work securing the resources and community connections required to make this project accessible to multiple Chicago neighborhoods, pay the Chicago ensemble a fair wage, hire licensed sign language interpreters, and make use of performance spaces that allow for step-free access, alternative seating options, all gender bathrooms, and accommodations for performers using mobility devices.

We are honored for this project to have been selected for Pop Magic Productions’ Incubator Series. Pop Magic is supporting us throughout the next leg of the production process, and helping us to raise the funds required to make our goals a reality. Through the generosity of one of Pop Magic’s investors, every donation made by our community will be instantly doubled!

Thank you for following our work these last few months, and for believing in us as we try to forge a new model of making theatre that holds space for everyone. If you are inspired by what we’re building, or interested to see us pull it off, please donate to our fundraiser. Every little bit counts!