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Description - The Ventriloquist by Larry Tremblay

In The Ventriloquist, Larry Tremblay directs his celebrated mastery of the dramatic monologue to an interrogation of the process of characterization itself. Alone on the stage with his puppet, the ventriloquist introduces his "self " as a construct of characters, along with his "other" imagined characters, to an audience which bears witness to the enormous psychological risks an author must take in the creative process. Constantly walking the dangerously thin edge separating the creation of voice from its appropriation, the ventriloquist struggles to control and shape an imaginary dialogue that we know originates from a single source, but successfully creates the illusion of personal conflict and resolution, success and failure, triumph and despair.

Part of the extended metaphor of interaction between an authoritative adult psychoanalyst and a deeply disturbed adolescent patient, each of the characters in The Ventriloquist is stripped of their clothes of convention, encouraged to reveal both their "real" and "imagined" transgressions of mind and body, to break free of the constraints and taboos against incest, abuse, dominance and submission which are at one and the same time both the foundations and the limitations of the most fundamental of human interactions. As fractured as the process of writing itself, with all of its false starts, pauses, blockages and revisions, both the ventriloquist and his puppet in this play become a series of unresolved vocalized texts and erasures of self and other, locked in the struggle of the constructed self to imagine an other that is, in the end, more than merely an elaborated fragment of whom any given character represents from one moment of successful illusion to the next in both the "real" and the "imaginary" world.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780889225367
ISBN-10: 0889225362
Format: Paperback / softback
(229mm x 153mm x mm)
Pages: 64
Imprint: Talon Books,Canada
Publisher: Talon Books,Canada
Publish Date: 1-Apr-2006
Country of Publication: Canada

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Author Biography - Larry Tremblay

Larry Tremblay Larry Tremblay is a writer, director, actor and specialist in Kathakali, an elaborate dance theatre form which he has studied on numerous trips to India. He has published twenty books as a playwright, poet, novelist and essayist. The recent publication of Talking Bodies (Talonbooks, 2001) brought together four of his plays in English translation. He played the role of Leo in his own play Le Declic du destin in many festivals in Brazil and Argentina. The play received a new production in Paris in 1999 and was highly successful at the Festival Off in Avignon in 2000. Thanks to an uninterrupted succession of new plays (Anatomy Lesson, Ogre, The Dragonfly of Chicoutimi, Les Mains bleues and Teleroman, among others) in production during the 1990s, Tremblay's work continues to achieve international recognition. His plays, premiered for the most part in Montreal, have also been produced, often in translation, in Italy, France, Belgium, Mexico, Columbia, Brazil, Argentina and Scotland. In 2001, Le Ventriloque had three separate productions in Paris, Brussels and Montreal; it has since been translated into numerous languages. More recently, Tremblay collaborated with Welsh Canadian composer John Metcalf on a new opera, A Chair in Love, a concert version of which premiered in Montreal in April 2005. One of Quebec's most versatile writers, Tremblay currently teaches acting at l'Ecole superieure de theatre de l'Universite du Quebec a Montreal. Keith Turnbull Keith Turnbull served as the artistic director of Theatre Arts programs at the Banff Centre for the Arts from 1993 to 1999 and was also the co-director of the Banff playRites Colony and director of the Contemporary Opera and Song Training Program from 1997 to 2000. His career as a director, producer, designer and dramaturge is highlighted by a commitment to contemporary and new work in both theatre and opera. In addition, Turnbull has a particular interest in the pedagogy, performance practice and interpretation of the works of Shakespeare and of other language-based texts. He has directed more than seventy plays at various theatres throughout the world. Turnbull also founded a First Nations theatre company from which emerged many of Canada's most noted Native performers. He was the founding co-artistic director of the Toronto Theatre Festival and the president of the Toronto Theatre Alliance, as well as a board member of the Canadian Actors' Equity Association. He has taught at the University of Manitoba, the National Theatre School, the University of Calgary and the Banff Centre for the Arts.

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