May 20, 2021 update on live performances and events at the NAC.

“A huge, summital moment”: Annabel Soutar on collaborating with English Theatre

Annabel Soutar © Vivian Doan

In the spring of 2014 NAC English Theatre presented Annabel’s docudrama Seeds on the NAC’s national stage. Annabel is currently collaborating with English Theatre on her most recent work The Watershed, and spoke to us about the importance of the collaboration.

Q:  Your play Seeds was recently performed on the NAC stage. What did this opportunity mean to you as a Canadian artist?

A:  It was a huge, summital moment. I had never seen my play performed to such a large audience before. This opportunity will open so many doors in the form of exposure.

Q:  How did your collaboration with NAC English Theatre begin on your next project The Watershed?

A:  Sarah Garton Stanley, Associate Artistic Director, NAC English Theatre came to see Seeds in Montreal in 2012 and was impressed. She told me the NAC was interested in developing new projects across Canada. She liked that The Watershed had a national scope and told me she would like to help me strengthen the piece. To support the play both financially and with an artistic outside eye is a huge opportunity for me.

Q:  How is NAC English Theatre’s commitment to collaboration supporting theatrical creation across Canada?

A:  When the NAC says they’re going to get in on the ground floor with you, it’s a wonderful step to developing your work. It makes artists feel like the NAC cares about our work and are interested in the process. By reaching out a hand, they’re saying they value you as an artist and that’s very encouraging.

Q:  What message would you like to send to NAC supporters who help make first-rate theatre performance and creation possible at the NAC and across the country?

A:  I’d like to send a huge message of gratitude for your leap of faith in the arts. With our work, we’re trying to create a space for conversation and contemplation for what’s happening in Canada today. Thank you for thinking of the arts as something that promotes a healthy society.

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