Risk & Reward 2018 – Thoughts During Performances


Response by Meg Nanna (Find her photography work at:  http://www.mnannafoto.com/) 

 Britt Karhoff –

  • Pulls you in from the beginning; her struggle with the table feels very visceral to me. Constantly trying to hold everything in life together while the world still continues around you. I feel like I’m watching a representation of my inner battles and personal struggle with anxiety and depression.
  • I love her slow & gradual set formation.
  • Passive, acquiescent words being used. Interesting presentation of a common narrative in day-to-day life.
  • People around me are laughing at things that I find very sad; her body movement is not funny, it is intentional. To me, it represents the constant need to accommodate those around us by “keeping our shit together”. There’s always an internal battle to be perfect and “normal”, whatever that means.
  • I can feel her pain envelop the room.
  • I want her to smash things.
  • I love that she cleaned up after herself. It really drives the point home that no matter what, we have to be perfect.

Bouton Volonté-

  • I am completely covered in goosebumps and tears.
  • This is starting such an important conversation about gender and all of the bullshit that surrounds it. SELF is more important than any label slapped on us.
  • This is so
  • The fact that a white, older, entitled male was the one that said, “ I’m a male, and you look like me.” really drove Bouton’s point home. This man, even after being asked to leave, thought that he was asked to do so so that he could be a “martyr”. That was so perfectly timed that it could have been staged.
  • People need to open their god damn eyes!!

Angel Alviar-Langley-

  • Two beautiful bodies in unison. Gender and race do not exist.
  • Stunning, heartbreaking dialog about race.
  • Engaging to the point where I cannot form a sentence.
  • I hate that privilege exists.

Eli Steffen-

  • Repetitive, disturbing things that some people hear every single day of their lives. Anyone who is outside of the “social norm” is an outcast. They are not a threat. They are not trying to make a scene. They are trying to live their lives and why can’t civilization let them do that?
  • You hear the same disgusting thing over and over and over again that eventually you become completely numb to it.
  • This is forcing the audience to feel uncomfortable, and putting them through the same, monotonous bullshit that they hear every day.
  • One audience member became so upset that they yelled, “Enough!” which again, really drove the point home. Congrats on two wins tonight, Portland. Did I mention it was another privileged white person? Jesus.

Cheryl Delostrinos/Au Collective-

  • Wow wow wow wow wow
  • They are all so extremely different from each other and completely transfixing in their own unique way
  • Women are fucking amazing.

Overall, this is one of the most thought out, poignant, crucially important and impactful things I have ever witnessed. Each performance mesmerized and touched me, to the point where I found my jaw hanging and tears flowing. They each touched on such large issues separately, and somehow they all melded together into one. This backs up my belief that art can be used as a huge weapon of change, and I want to personally thank every person involved with this festival, on the stage and behind it. I am so, so lucky to have attended such a beautiful production.