In rehearsal for “Who Do You Think You Are,” a work-in-progress by SITI theatre company, J. Ed Araiza demonstrated how two fists can serve as a diagram for the brain.
Araiza plays the character Jorge, a victim of violence who becomes intrigued by neuroscience.
“Who Do You Think You Are” explores the complexities and breakthroughs in neuroscience and its impact on human interaction.
Anne Bogart, who wrote the work, said it is crucial for people to show interest in these breakthroughs. She said people can improve their lives through the study of brain science.
SITI will perform “Who Do You Think You Are” tomorrow night in Frey Rehearsal Hall at UNC’s Center for Dramatic Art.
New York-based SITI is the second participant in PlayMakers Repertory Company’s three-year residency program, which was created by a $200,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
Jeffrey Meanza, associate artistic director for PlayMakers, said the program gives participants access to PlayMakers’ resources and pays for housing as theater companies develop their works.
SITI began working on “Who Do You Think You Are” five years ago, but Bogart said the resources provided by the residency program will likely allow her to complete the complex work.
“The program gives us the time and space to do the work that needs to be done,” Bogart said.
Founded in 1992 by Japanese director Tadashi Suzuki and Bogart, SITI has won more than 20 performance awards.
“I started SITI after I realized that all great performances I had seen were put on by theatre companies,” Bogart said.
The performers in “Who Do You Think You Are” have been members of SITI since its creation.
Bogart said SITI establishes relationships between members and draws from a variety of influences to enhance its performances.
Before each rehearsal, SITI members engage in a rigorous physical exercise developed by Suzuki to sharpen performers’ concentration. Bogart also developed a style of improvisation for SITI performers drawn from post-modern dance, called “Viewpoints.”
SITI’s performance will take place Friday at 7:30 p.m. and is free and open to the public. To reserve seats, email PRCresidencies@gmail.com. Attendees are encouraged to stay after the performance to discuss the work with the SITI members.
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