On December 3 please join us for renowned international theatre scholar Andrzej Wirth and editor of PAJ Publications andPAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art, Bonnie Marranca. This is the first in a series of lectures focused on artists and scholars discussing their personal and professional connection to The Watermill Center. Each lecturer in this series has contributed to the newly published book The Watermill Center – A Laboratory for Performance: Robert Wilson’s Legacy.
About Bonnie Marranca
Bonnie Marranca is publisher and editor of the Obie Award-winning PAJ Publications and PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art (originally called Performing Arts Journal), which she co-founded in 1976. She has written three collections of criticism: Performance Histories, Ecologies of Theatre, and Theatrewritings, the recipient of the George Jean Nathan Award for Dramatic Criticism. Among the many anthologies she has edited are: New Europe: plays from the continent, Plays for the End of the Century; American Dreams: The Imagination of Sam Shepard; and The Theatre of Images, one of the seminal books of contemporary theatre. Her writings have been translated into fifteen languages.
Bonnie Marranca is a Guggenheim Fellow and Fulbright Senior Scholar who has taught in many universities here and abroad, including Columbia University, Princeton University, NYU, Duke University, the University of California-San Diego, Free University (Berlin), and Autonomous University/Institute for Theatre (Barcelona). She is Professor of Theatre at The New School/Eugene Lang College for Liberal Arts.
About Andrzej Wirth
Professor Wirth was The Watermill Center’s first scholar in residence with artist Thomas Martius to create their film Wilson’s Island.
As a literary and theatre critic as well as an editor in Warsaw, Wirth wrote on Witkiewicz, Grotowski, Mrozek and Kantor. He was an assistant at Brecht’s Berliner Ensemble and associated with the literary Gruppe 47. A mediator between Polish and German culture during a vital period, Wirth translated works by German writers Kafka, Dürrenmatt, and Brecht into Polish and edited works by Bruno Schulz, Tadeusz Borowski, and modern Polish dramatists. Following a political emigration to the USA in 1966, Wirth taught drama and comparative literature at Stanford University, moving to the City University of New York in 1970. Additionally, he directed plays at campus theatres.
In the 1970s, Wirth was instrumental in introducing Gertrude Stein, Robert Wilson and American Avant-garde Theatre into German critical discourse. A former student of praxeology (the theory of praxis), at the Warsaw School of Analytical Philosophy, he was looking for its application in theatre studies. In 1982 he founded the first German Institute for Applied Theatre Theory (Angewandte Theaterwissenschaft) at the University of Giessen, garnering annational and international reputation for that program and inviting internationally reputed guests such as Heiner Müller, George Tabori, Michael Kirby, Robert Wilson, Richard Schechner, John Jesurun and Emma Lew Thomas.
As a visiting professor, Wirth taught and directed at Harvard University, Yale School of Drama, Oxford University, St Antony’s College, and the Freie Universität, Berlin. He has conducted international theatre workshops in Sydney, Australia, and under the hospices of the Teatro de la Righe in Volterra, Italy, as well as at Oxford University. With Thomas Martius he made films on Venice and Las Vegas and on Robert Wilson’s Watermill Center.
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