We’ve performed Trans-Script three times now, enough to gauge how audiences will react to it as a piece of theatre and as an exploration of the question, “Is love enough?”
We anticipated a mixed response. The play deals with the challenges faced by friends, lovers, parents, and adult children as they navigate the stormy waters of sexuality, gender, and identity. It plays with fire, because it openly challenges many of the comfortable assumptions our society makes about loving relationships: romantic and familial. It plays with fire because it is drawn from the real lives of real people, so it doesn’t offer easy answers or neat conclusions. It doesn’t offer advice. It does offer honest, often painful, intimacy.
So we expected some audience members would be offended, some would be angered, some would be surprised, some would be challenged, and some – we hoped – would be encouraged.
We have seen all of these responses. But … surprisingly … not in the ways we expected. Audiences have been offended and angered, but not by the script and the stories it tells. Instead, they’ve been offended and angered by the injustice that creates the pain experienced by the characters, knowing that the stories are real and the pain is real. They’ve been challenged, not only to examine their own comfortable assumptions, but also to imagine ways they could act to counter that injustice. And they’ve been encouraged, because Trans-Script tells stories that matter!
We have been so very encouraged by the way audiences in churches and on campus have opened their hearts and accepted Trans-Script as one, partial and imperfect, contribution to an essential conversation.
Go here for information about upcoming performances.
It’s been a long while since we’ve posted here, but we haven’t gone away. Faith&Arts is still very much alive and dreaming up new ways to connect with our spirituality imaginatively. In fact, we’re about to premiere our fourth piece of original theatre and we’re excited!
Trans-Script asks an essential question: “Is love enough?”
What do you think? Are there times when love is not enough?
Trans-Script is based on real experiences and real people. We gathered stories at a series of workshops in the fall, our theatre professionals Eleanor and Rosemary took some time to sift and write, and our cast of talented volunteer actors have been rehearsing hard to bring Eleanor and Rosemary’s script to life. And now we’re just weeks away from our first performance.
Stay tuned to learn all the details, and check out our Trans-Script page for more info.
The first Cracks Festival is just a few days away. Helping to plan and organize it has been a 14 month journey of creativity, inspiration, and nail-biting stress. But that’s all over now; now the fun begins.
Its hard to believe that a casual conversation in a church hallway last year has turned into this one-of-a-kind event. It is going to be an amazing weekend. If you haven’t got your tickets, HURRY UP!
Check out the concerts and the workshops and the worship, then buy your tickets here.
Don’t miss it! It really is going to be great.
When: Saturday, October 25, 2014
Where: St. Paul’s-Eastern United Church
473 Cumberland, Ottawa
Workshop: 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Cost: Suggested Registration: $25 | Students: $10
For information or to register phone: 613-237-1821
Workshop leader Ray McGinnis brings a splendid range of writing exercises to spark your imagination. At this workshop, come play with words, come nurture your spirit as you learn ways to write your own new psalms. Explore how Psalm writing can deepen personal and spiritual growth.
Ray brings to this workshop simple step-by-step exercises to help you write a new psalm with ease. Come and explore the thin spaces where reflective writing and spirituality meet. This workshop is designed for both those who enjoy writing and those who have never put pen to paper. This is a workshop open to older children, youth and adults. Signed copies of Writing the Sacred will be available for sale during the workshop for those who wish to purchase a copy priced at $25.
Bio: Ray McGinnis is author of Writing the Sacred. He is a graduate of the Center for Christian Studies and is a former national staff person for Youth and Young Adult Ministries for the United Church of Canada. He leads poetry workshops, prayer writing workshops, Psalm-writing workshops and journal writing workshops. A popular presenter, Ray has taught over 13,000 participants at writing workshops across North America. His website is www.writetotheheart.com. He lives in Vancouver.
Hey, if you tune in to CBC’s Radio’s Ottawa Morning show (91.5 FM) at 8:30 tomorrow morning you’ll hear Hallie Cotnam interview Tom Sherwood and Eleanor Crowder about godVERBATIM. It’ll be a great interview!
More info at: www.godverbatim.ca.
Cast member Jessica Rousseau did a terrific interview about godVERBATIM in Ottawa Xtra. Powerfully honest and very moving, as well as a great plug for the show. Here are a few quotes to whet your appetite, and a link to the whole article.
“Our goal with this performance is really to present the idea that despite having different beliefs, or maybe no beliefs, you can still connect with another person on the basis that we’re all spiritually searching,” she says. “We definitely are being very tactful with the material because we want to present the positive side, the good that can come of this rather than the critical aspects of it, which has been done so many times.”
“Rousseau says having a safe, creative space to express being queer and being Christian has been cathartic. She was also able to share the experience with her fiancé and fellow cast member, Laura Lake, who is trans.”
“What I like about [godVerbatim] is definitely how free and open Faith and Arts Ottawa has allowed us to be, in keeping with the Fringe mandate that anything goes,” she says. “Some of these experiences are very radical or harsh or strange, and we have a place to tell them here, which is really cool.”
godVERBATIM is playing at St. Paul’s Eastern United Church on June 20, 21, 22, and 26, 27 & 28.
More information at godVERBATIM.ca.
Tickets at the Ottawa Fringe Festival box office.
Cracks Festival – November 7 & 8, 2014
“Everything has a crack in it. That’s where the light gets in.” – Leonard Cohen
Cracks is for spiritually-inclined people who want to connect through informative workshops, inspiring art-making, out of this world music and exhibits that awaken you spiritually. Whether you want to roll up your sleeves to make art, take in a panel conversation about social justice, meet an author, put on your sacred dance shoes, or while away time in the chapel listening to local musicians – there is something for everyone.
Come for the Jully Black and LeE HARVey OsMOND concerts or take in the full day of workshops and the concerts – it’s up to you. To leave room for the Spirit to move, we have designed Cracks so that you can attend whatever workshops you like as your day unfolds.
a bit of background…
The Cracks festival emerged after David Sherwin, Trisha Elliott and James Murray experienced the Greenbelt festival in the UK. Struck by the energy of the event, the three decided to try a similar urban festival at home in Ottawa, Canada. A creative convergence of spirit, art and social justice began to emerge as the “Cracks Festival,” where, as Leonard Cohen says, “the light gets in.”
Cracks has benefited from a lot of volunteer support. Faith And Arts Ottawa, a nonprofit ministry that explores the intersection of art and spirituality is a driving force behind this project (it helps that David Sherwin is the Executive Director). The Christian Development committee of The Ottawa Presbytery (United Church Of Canada) came on board early on to offer seed money and volunteer support. Kim Vidal and Carla Van Delen jumped in to help. As a sponsor, Dominion Chalmers United Church generously donated the use of their space. George Hermanson secured LeE HARVey OsMOND and Jully Black for our first festival and here we are, hoping that you will join us for a great weekend event.
More details at www.cracksfestival.org
Buy tickets at http://cracksfestival.org/2014/04/15/box-office/