A piece made for Toronto’s 32nd annual convergence of contemporary performance: The Rhubarb Festival at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre.
After 12 years of living away, I am interested in finding out what Toronto is made of. I’m hoping we can learn something about it, while spending a little bit of time together as strangers who share a city...
Throughout the Rhubarb Festival I'll be making a series of invitations to audience members and to strangers in the city. My first invitation is this:
Think of a place of significance in Toronto. Sometime between Wednesday Feb 16th and Sunday Feb 20th, mark that place on the city map that I will display in the Ante Chamber at Buddies. (You'll find instructions there.)
In the days that follow, I will go to each place marked on the map.
I'll make something there to share with you...
Homecoming was part of an ongoing invitation-based series including Beste Buur. Each experiment involves taking time, meeting strangers, interrupting the everyday, and elements of chance built in. For ‘Homecoming’, the locations of the encounters were chosen by Rhubarb audience members. From these places, I followed strangers and met the city, collected stories and then shared them in a lecture performance at the end of the festival.
In 2014 I was asked to create a short 'remix' of this performance ^ for an event called 35 performances for 35 years - a show of variety to mark the 35th year of the Rhubarb Festival.
For this I sent out the following note to 35 people:
In early 2011, upon arrival in Toronto and before I met any of the 35 of you, I made a piece for Rhubarb that began with the following invitation:
I grew up in Toronto but haven’t lived here in over 10 years. It is home and not home. I would like your help in re-learning our city. I want to invite you put a place of significance on this map. It can be significant to you personally, important to public life, a place that needs celebrating, a place that needs changing, or any combination of these.
I am wondering if you could choose a place in Toronto for me now. I will use your answers in making my 3 minute performance for Rhubarb (which will happen this Thursday Feb 13th, 2014).
The sooner you can answer the better as I may endeavour to visit as many of these places as possible... starting Sunday - today.
Maybe you'll choose a place we've been together, or perhaps someplace I've never been or noticed. Either way, I feel my senses of the city are not so keen of late and I'm looking forward to how you might make me more attentive.