Monday, April 29, 2019

ATROCITIES 'R' US at Montreal Fringe 2019

At Montreal Fringe
June 5-June 16, 2019

Venue 8
Black Theatre Workshop Studio, 3680 rue Jeanne-Mance
75 minutes
in English/en Anglais

Thursday     Jun 06     7:30 pm
Friday          Jun 07     5:30 pm
Saturday     Jun 08      4:00 pm
Sunday        Jun 09     8:45 pm
Thursday     Jun 13     11:15 pm
Friday          Jun 14      6:00 pm
Saturday     Jun 15      9:15 pm

Press Release
Montreal Fringe 2019

Tasha Diamant has been exploring radical vulnerability as a performance art form since starting the critically acclaimed Human Body Project in small-town Alberta more than 13 years ago. Unscripted, without a conventional narrative, honest and naked, Diamant shows up as vulnerably as possible to mirror humanity's state at this harrowing moment in history.

Raw, yes, but she can also be pretty funny. Comedian Maria Bamford has joked: "Weakness is the brand." Riffing, Diamant says: "Pain is the brand." Diamant self-deprecatingly shares challenging truths about herself, such as struggling with severe emotional pain; surviving Stage 4 ovarian cancer; spectacularly failing to thrive in the cult of academia; mothering in isolation; etc.

Gift from J. Graydon
The baring of body and self is also about reflecting the culture. Her work falls in the Shamanism and Elderhood Department, if Westernized, globalized consumer-people had such a thing. Diamant is white, educated, and privileged. She has often spoken about her work as a way to use her privilege and pain to interrogate and criticize her culture. 

And as a way to model vulnerability and show solidarity with those who are most vulnerable. In fact, Diamant takes her art to the streets. For years, often alone, she has held regular "Vulnerability Vigils," standing naked in the open, in some cases holding an Extinction Symbol sign.
Diamant, 2014 "Vulnerability Vigil"

By exposing herself and leaving herself open to judgment, audience members' issues—through their projections on her—also become somewhat disclosed. Diamant is subverting audience expectations of who is responsible for what and it's uncomfortable.

In performance and in public, Diamant hopes to offer a form of cultural healing for a civilization that renders older women invisible, has no shamanic tradition, and is destroying the world. For Diamant, who began naked performance art/activism in 2006, the need for a cure has gone far beyond urgency.
"In a space with no limits, we nonetheless carry limits in ourselves, play roles, seek confirmation. Our winner is a show that isn't comfortable in its contradictions and cares so deeply it just can't give a fuck! Fierce nonchalance and the full power of extreme vulnerability: it challenges everything we believe about theatre and undermines all hierarchies."
— Geoff Agombar, Mainline juror 
"You are a role model."— audience member
"Powerful medicine...When confronted with work to which I've had a visceral reaction I need to go deep within to confront the part of me that’s mirrored. Although there are many solemn moments, the performance is surprisingly life-affirming, with moments of laughter...Profoundly moving and relevant."— Janis La CouvĂ©e, Dispatches from the Victoria Fringe 2017
"The definition of sincerity."— audience member
"You connect all the dots."— audience member
Tasha Diamant, 57, lives in Victoria, BC, and is married with two daughters, 17 and 12. Work she has been paid for: waitress, journalist, visual artist, yoga teacher, university instructor. She has participated in several community and prison theatre projects. This is her 10th anniversary as a fringe performer. Diamant is a privileged, monolingual English-speaking, cis, straight woman of European descent who is not actually an extrovert.


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