The Man Who Married Himself
by Juliet Palmer (composer), Anna Chatterton (librettist)
& Hari Krishnan (choreographer)
“Split my body in two. Bury my left half in flowers. Blood and bone in earth will birth a woman.”
Sexuality & Self, Desire & Transformation
An allegory told by 2 dancers, 3 singers & 6 instrumentalists
Taking place at Toronto's newest venue
10 & 11 March 2017, 8:00 p.m, pre-show event at 7:15 p.m. each evening
Matinee at 2:00 p.m., 11 March 2017, pre-show event at 1:15 p.m.
Crow’s Theatre, 345 Carlaw Avenue at Dundas Street East
Unwilling to marry a woman, a man fashions a lover from his own left side. He's enraptured by her perfect beauty – a mirror of his own – until he discovers that this new woman longs for freedom and wildly desires another.
South Asian and Baroque music and performance traditions meet in a stunning new masque based on a traditional Indian folk tale. A powerful & timely allegory of the female and male warring within, told through music, words and movement.
Singers Scott Belluz, Alex Samaras and Susha
Dancers Jelani Ade-Lam and Sze-Yang Ade-Lam
A chamber orchestra conducted by Larry Beckwith featuring:
Ben Grossman, percussion
Paul Jenkins, chamber organ
Kathleen Kajioka, violin
Sibylle Marquardt, flute
Kerri McGonigle, cello
Peter Stoll, clarinet
Directed by Marie-Nathalie Lacoursière
Lighting Design by Gabriel Cropley
Costume & Set Design by Rex
Alex Samaras and Susha in rehearsal for The Man Who Married Himself
Juliet Palmer & Hari Krishnan chat about The Man Who Married Himself
Read the libretto by Anna Chatterton
Read our recent newsletters for notes from the production's creative team
What does Larry have to say?
"This piece is such a beautiful gift to TMT from two creative artists – Anna and Juliet – who are at the top of their game. Taking an ancient tale as their jumping off point, they give us a contemporary story containing insights into gender and sexuality, culture and tradition. The music, which features elements of Baroque music, jazz and Karnatic improvisation, plays off the sinewy, physical movement that is informed by traditional dance but remains at the same time so modern."
The Man Who Married Himself was commissioned by Toronto Masque Theatre with the generous assistance of the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council
Composer Juliet Palmer is known as a “post-modernist with a conscience” (The Listener) whose work “crosses so many genres as to be in a category of its own” (Toronto Star). Recent premieres: Vermillion Songs for tenor Simon O’Neill and NZTrio; and Sweat, a cappella opera with Anna Chatterton (National Sawdust and Center for Contemporary Opera, New York). Juliet is the Artistic Director of Urbanvessel, a platform for interdisciplinary collaboration. Recent productions: Boots (Opera Peepshow); Singing River, site-specific performance (Pan Am Path, Waterfront Toronto, Arts in the Parks); Stitch (Dora nominations Best New Opera and Best Production); Slip (Best Experimental Short, Toronto International Short Film Festival); and Voice-Box (Harbourfront World Stage). Upcoming: Quarry (soprano Sarah Albu and Continuum); The Unsilent Project for spoken word artists and orchestra (artistic direction by Michael Greyeyes for Signal Theatre and NYO Canada); and Sweat, Canadian premiere and tour (Bicycle Opera with director Banuta Rubess and librettist Anna Chatterton).
Anna Chatterton is a librettist, playwright and performer. She was recently named a top ten Toronto theatre artist of 2016 by NOW Magazine. As a librettist, Anna’s work has been commissioned and produced by Canadian Opera Company (Swoon), Harbourfront Centre (Voice-Box), Center for Contemporary Opera (Sweat, NYC), The Banff Centre for the Arts (Crush), Tapestry Opera and Scottish Opera (Rocking Horse Winner), Urbanvessel and the Theatre Centre (Stitch, Dora Mavor Moore Award nomination for Outstanding New Opera). Anna’s plays include Within the Glass (Tarragon Theatre) and her solo play Quiver (Nightwood Theatre). Anna also writes and performs with the acclaimed feminist theatre collective Independent Aunties (with Evalyn Parry and Karin Randoja). The Aunties most recent play, Gertrude and Alice (Buddies in Bad Times Theatre) was nominated for Dora Mavor Moore awards for Outstanding New Play and Best Ensemble. Anna is a playwright in residence at Tarragon Theatre and Nightwood Theatre.
Director, choreographer and dancer Marie-Nathalie Lacoursière is the recipient of grants from La Fondation Royaumont (France), the Conseil des arts et lettres du Québec and the Canada and Quebec Councils for the Arts. She has a multidisciplinary background in music, acting, historical dancing, and is the Associate Director with Toronto Masque Theatre and co-Artistic Director of Le Nouvel Opéra in Montreal. She has directed, choreographed and danced in Canada, United States and Europe for over 20 years, including the Festival de St-Riquier (France); the Boston Early Music Festival; Clavecin en concert ( Corsica), the New Zealand Chamber Music Festival; Early music Vancouver and the Festival Musicale Estense (Italy). She has directed and choreographed many shows for the Festival Montréal Baroque for the past 12 years. For the Toronto Masque Theater, Marie-Nathalie has choreographed all of Purcell’s stage works and directed James Rolfe’s Europa, John Blow’s Venus and Adonis, Charpentier’s La Descente d’Orphée aux Enfers, and others. Marie-Nathalie has directed many operas: Il Combatimento di Tancrede e Clorind, Carmen, Tales of Hoffmann, L’Elisir d’Amore, Fledermauss, Guilio Cesare, L’Incoronazione di Poppea. She also teaches at the Vancouver Early music program and Montreal’s music college, Vincent d’Indy.
Bessie (NYC) and Dora (TO) Award nominee Hari Krishnan is the artistic director of Toronto-based company inDANCE and Associate Professor of Dance in the Department of Dance at Wesleyan University (Connecticut). As an award-winning dancemaker, he is commissioned for his avant-garde, subversive and transgressive choreography to create work with soloists and companies around the world. Hari Krishnan was recently featured as one the top ten stand-out artists to watch this winter by Toronto’s NOW magazine. His rabble-rousing new work, Holy Cow(s)! premieres from March 23-25, 2017 at the Harbourfront Centre Theatre.
Rex studied art and design with specializations in textiles, fashion and interiors at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City. He currently lives in Toronto, directing his own creative design consultancy. His work has been featured on premier soloists, ensembles and companies at prestigious venues in Canada, the US, Europe and Asia. Along with dance and theatre, Rex works on commissioned interior design projects.
Gabriel Cropley is a Toronto based lighting designer and two-time Dora Award nominee who has enjoyed a fruitful collaboration with Toronto Masque Theatre since 2006. Gabriel has had the privilege of collaborating with Theatre Gargantua, Peggy Baker Dance Projects, Jillian Peever Dance Creations, BoucharDanse, dreamwalker dance, Angela Blumberg, Sabina Perry, Expect Theatre, Sook-Yin Lee, Little Pear Garden Collective, NAfro Dance (Winnipeg), Deviation Dance, Teatron Theatre, Newton Moraes Dance Theatre, Cadence Contemporary Ballet, Tracey Norman, Forcier StageWorks, Soulpepper Global Cabaret, RAW Taiko Drummers, Coleman Lemieux & Compagnie, Continuum Contemporary Music, JDdance, Tribal Crackling Wind, Toronto Dance Theatre, sore for punching you, Art of Time Ensemble and Le Nouvel Opera (Montreal), and the School of Toronto Dance Theatre.
Jelani Ade-Lam (right) is an African, Bermudian, Mohawk, 2Spirit, queer and transcendent individual. Jelani works to change all hierarchical mainstream arts and dance spaces by highlighting accessibility and representations of marginalized LGBTTIQQ2S communities. Jelani is a co-founder of ILL NANA/DiverseCity Dance Company- a queer multiracial dance company that aims to broaden the landscape of queer and trans people of colour in dance and provide accessible affirming dance education to all LGBTTIQQ2S communities. Jelani is the artistic Director of OVA- Outrageous Victorious Africans Collective a Dance/Theatre collective that share the contemporary voices of African/Black and Queer/Self Identified storytellers. Jelani is committed to eradicating all forms of anti-Black racism, supporting Black healing and liberating Black communities through their work. (Photo by Orchid Fung.)
Sze-Yang Ade-Lam (left) is a queer Asian dancer, martial artist, storyteller & community developer. Sze-Yang shares stories through movement for self love and empowerment, as an independent artist and as part of ILL NANA/DiverseCity Dance Company. A graduate of school of TDT, Sze-Yang continues to study with Xing Bang Fu, Christine Wright, & Simon Lalonde, Wing Chun with Ryan Kennedy, Hip Hop and Street Styles. Sze-Yangs worked with Kaha:wi Dance Theatre, InDance, Little Pear Garden Dance Company, Xing Dance Theatre, Cadence Ballet, Jacob Niedzwiecki, Sameena Mitta, Simon Renaud, Emily Law’s & Ashley Colours Perez’s acclaimed work Jack Your Body. Through ILL NANA/DCDC Sze-Yang’s work has been showcased internationally at Art Gallery of Ontario, Royal Museum of Art, Pride Toronto & Montreal, Rhubarb Festival, Body Break, Dance Matters, Vivo Media Centre, and the Allied Media Conference. Sze-Yang is committed to creating more accessible dance education and performance opportunities for people underrepresented in the arts. (Photo by Orchid Fung.)
Canadian countertenor Scott Belluz has gained recognition for his ‘warm, rich voice and impeccable coloratura,’ (La Marseillaise). Scott brings his committed artistry to repertoire ranging from 17th century to newly composed works. Scott has received great acclaim for his performances in the world premieres of numerous Canadian operatic works, singing the title role in Omar Daniel’s The Shadow with Tapestry New Opera and L’Oiseau in Gilles Tremblay’s Opéra Féerie with Chants Libres. Scott sang in the world premiere of "From the House of Mirth" (Rodney Sharman/Alex Poch-Goldin), choreographed by James Kudelka, for ColemanLemieux Compagnie. In 2017, Scott sings in the Canadian premiere of Salvatore Sciarroni’s The Killing Flower with New Music Toronto and is a soloist in Unsuk Chin’s Cantatrix Sopranica with RCM’s 21C Festival.
Alex Samaras is recognized as one of North America's leading singers in the jazz and new music idioms. He has performed with Meredith Monk, Brent Carver, Jackie Richardson, Zac Brown Band, Martha Wainwright and a number of other notable performing artists. Alex leads his own vocal group GREX, exploring the extremes of the human voice in the context of ancient music and his own original compositions. He performs in well known Canadian groups such as A Sondheim Jazz Project and Twin Within. Both groups have released records to critical acclaim and you can find more about them at their websites. Alex will be releasing his first solo album this year under the name TRYAL. Alex teaches singing at The University of Toronto Jazz Department, Jazz Works Music Camp and National Music Camp. He is also the proud conductor of the PAL Chorale at the Performing Artists Lodge in Toronto.
Susha is a musician and visual artist. She performs Indian classical/contemporary music, jazz, and world music. She began her music training in India and went on to study for a Masters in Jazz Performance at the University of Toronto. Her other areas of work include graphic design and painting. She does cross-cultural, cross-disciplinary and collaborative work, finding bridges between the different kinds of arts. She travels internationally performing original as well as classical music, and sings for Indian cinema. She has released albums- Yodhakaa, Poorvaa, and Sudha Tarangini to name a few. In her latest large project Arunagiri Perumale, a musical documentary about an Indian mystic poet, she worked as singer, percussionist, art director and illustrator.
Photo of Jelani Ade-Lam and Sze-Yang Ade-Lam by Gordon Mony-Penny