PIAF Blog

Meet Festival Navigator Ruth Little

Tuesday 8 November 2016

Theatre and dance dramaturg, teacher, writer, and PIAF’s unofficial philosopher-in-residence, Ruth Little has spent much of her life curating, developing and writing about art and live performance across the world. Join Ruth in her role as Festival Navigator as she explores our program in all its multi-faceted glory.

Occupation:

Dramaturg, writer

Favourite part of WA?

Last year I encountered the magnificent Lancelin dunes and thought I was in the Cairngorms in Scotland ... except that it was 42C.

What kind of stuff do you write?

I write non-fiction essays about theatre and dance dramaturgy and I commission, develop and write about art-science collaborations in the context of climate change.

Who have you written for?

I've written books about the Royal Court and the Young Vic theatres and essays for dance organisations, academic books and journals, environmental publications and blogs.

What does a dramaturg do?

Dramaturgs support artists, in Jonathan Burrows' words, to go in confidence to places they've never been before in their work. Dramaturgy is about building relationships of trust with artists and about supporting and deepening the process by which projects come into being, find form and connect with audiences.

What do your friends and family think you do for a living?

They think I drink coffee in dark studios and move around a lot. They're right.

What’s your favourite PIAF moment?

Being in the company of refugee women taking part in Evie Manning's workshop in 2016 – and hearing them express themselves with confidence and hope. That was a great privilege.

A show that everyone should see this year?

Betroffenheit by Crystal Pite and Jonathon Young. It takes the breath away.

What does a Festival Navigator do?

I'll be looking for lines of thought and enquiry that can be drawn out of individual works to become part of a larger conversation between artists and audiences about the most pressing issues and ideas of our times.

What are you excited to see at this year’s Festival?

Martin Green's Flit, Complicite's The Encounter. Pretty much everything!

Why do you think festivals are important for a city?

At their best, they create multiple sites for communication and connection, animate civic spaces and remind us all of our common problems and humanity. They make new maps and generate unexpected encounters – and shift the focus of cities and citizens from their economic identities to their social and spiritual identities. And they're fun.

Festival Navigator

Written By Ruth Little

Theatre and dance dramaturg, teacher, writer, and PIAF’s unofficial philosopher-in-residence, Ruth Little has spent much of her life curating, developing and writing about art and live performance across the world. Join Ruth in her role as Festival Navigator as she explores our program in all its multi-faceted glory.   

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