Sunday, March 16, 2014

Interview with Nicolas Billon (Canada)

What was your first experience of theater that converted you to wanting to pursue it as a career?

In elementary school, I performed a sketch during the intermission of a production of Alice in Wonderland. I played an "entertainer" who promotes the prowess of his dog (played by a friend of mine). I don't remember the sketch, but I vividly recall the feeling of making a full theatre burst out in laughter. There was something powerful about doing that that I've never forgotten. 

If you could have a drink with any dramatist (living or dead) who would it be and why?

Wallace Shawn. I admire his plays and I'd love to chat with him. I think we'd get along.

Why is theater important to you?

I appreciate theatre's ability to be simultaneously public and intimate, in a way that no other art form I've experienced manages to do.

If you could have one of your plays produced in any country in the world, which play and which country would you choose, and why? 

I'd love to see The Elephant Song  done in Germany. It's a well-made, Aristotelian play that, in the hands of a German director, will likely get deconstructed into something I would hardly recognize. If nothing else, that would be entertaining to watch!

Nicolas Billon (Canada) plays and translations have been produced at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival, Soulpepper Theatre, Canadian Stage, and the Théâtre d’Aujourd’hui. His first play, The Elephant Song, just finished a run in Paris of 112 performances and the feature film adaptation (starring Xavier Dolan, Bruce Greenwood, and Catherine Keener) wrapped shooting in December. Nic's collection of plays, FAULT LINES, was the recipient of the 2013 Governor-General's Award for Drama. He plays softball, dodgeball, and hockey with equal fervour.

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