Postcard from Bucharest

Team Leader Hannah Wolf shares discoveries from Romania.

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Briefly introduce yourself and your team. 

Ioanida Costache(USA/Sound Design), Toma Danila (Romanian), Stefan Huluba (Romanian), Ioana Florentina Manciu (Romanian), Bogdan Nechifor (Romanian), Camelia Pintilie (Romanian), Horia Suru (Romanian/Co-director) si Hannah Wolf (USA/Co-director).

How did your team approach the topic of overpopulation?

We talked a lot about the economic gap, which is especially prominent in Romania, how children are used on the farm in the countryside, how resources aren't available etc... We also explored the idea of "What's one more" mentality and how that relates to the personal vs. global aspect of the question of the piece, the big picture vs. little picture.  Romania is rich in rituals surrounding birth, marriage and death, and we're looking at how and if these rituals will continue. 

What other themes or topics are you wrestling with?

Time capsules, where we come from, what we want to leave, what we're actually leaving. The things that make us and the story that it tells. What things would you put in a bottle and shake up to make Romania? 

How did your environment or location influence your work?

The play is completely about Romania, from the jokes to the beer. We played a lot with the rituals of Romania/Romanians, the food, the characters. 

Share some of the discoveries you've made along the way (either about content or your devising methods). Has anything surprised you in the process?

This entire process was new for everyone, so discoveries were a daily thing. Most of the actors hadn't worked in a devised process, I was working in a new language, with actors who had a different training background, the list could go on and on. This process was about forging new ground, asking what happens next?, in terms of the content and our process, jumping off the deep end and discovering together.