Saving the Environment: A Family Affair at Centaur
Economic stability versus environmental sustainability. Centaur Theatre’s presentation of the Porte Parole/Crow’s Theatre co-production of The Watershed follows playwright Annabel Soutar and her family in a rollicking cross-country odyssey to uncover the truth about our fresh water resources. Canadian icon, Eric Peterson, stars in this unique journey of discovery. Barbara Ford spoke to Ms. Soutar about the Quebec English-language premiere of her controversial documentary-theatre hit.
BARBARA FORD: Why documentary-theatre as opposed to film?
ANNABEL SOUTAR: I enjoy the exercise of putting real footage from life into the artificial realm of the theatre. I think it provokes a unique reflection about the nature of reality – that it is a construct, and that humans have the power to change systems that appear to be immutable. I am passionate about digging below the surface of contemporary ideological divisions in Canada, and I think documentary theatre is the best space to do so.
BF: Director Chris Abraham introduced the idea of inserting you, the playwright, into the story for Seeds. Your entire family are characters in The Watershed.
AS: I would be lying if I said the process of including my family members in the script wasn’t very awkward, even painful at times. This was especially challenging for my husband Alex [Ivanovici] who plays himself in the production. He has to defend a view of himself in every performance as a supporting character in his protagonist wife’s narrative. I don’t know too many men who are humble enough to accept such a proposition but Alex is an incredibly insightful and generous actor.
THE WATERSHED AT CENTAUR THEATRE,
453 ST-FRANÇOIS-XAVIER FROM
NOVEMBER 8 TO DECEMBER 4, 2016. FOR
INFORMATION AND TICKETS: 514-288-3161. WWW.CENTAURTHEATRE.COM