Écorchée au Combat national des livres

The French translation of Skin Room is one of five books in this year's Radio-Canada Combat national des livres! Thank you Annie Pronovost, who translated my work so sensitively and to Marchand de Feuilles for choosing to publish this work. I am deeply honoured to have my book defended by Antonine Maillet. 

« Avec son Écorchée, dans une écriture totalement libre, unique et parsemée de drôleries, Sara Tilley fait patiner son impayable héroïne du Grand Nord à Terre-Neuve, de sa préadolescence à son entrée dans l’âge adulte, avec une rare maîtrise de l’art du roman. » – Antonine Maillet

You can vote for my book (even if you can't read it in French!) here. If you are so inclined you can even vote for it once a day til May 11th, and get entered to win prizes like a trip to Prague so, hey, why not: http://ici.radio-canada.ca/special/combat-des-livres/?access

World Theatre Day

It is World Theatre Day! I read a play in French by Hélène Cixous today, and then I translated part of an essay about theatre that she wrote in 1984, which some of you might like to read. I am a translation newbie but I think I have the feeling right here:

"The theatre is (the) Present. It must always be present tense. That is its fate. At each moment the present bursts open. The present is a brilliant darkness. We move forward, hearts beating, not knowing what might happen. And this unpredictable thing that makes us hold our breath, that lifts us up, that takes us higher than ourselves, is life itself. In the theatre the audience knows no more than the actor before them. No one has a head start. Together, we understand nothing. Together, we hesitate. This creates a dark, shuddering, old-fashioned complicity between us. 
We feel our way forward in the dark, by listening to the sounds of History, of the heart, of the forest, by holding out our hand for someone to take hold of.  
And in the noisy dark of the theatre, even enemies draw closer, tasting or suffering the same blindness--adversaries find themselves equally moved and menaced by the unknown, they press themselves against each other, and before they begin to fight, or while they fight, they also love each other."

Hélène Cixous, essay on theatre written in 1984 #WorldTheatreDay#translation #geekingout

Neutral Mask workshops in St. John's

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with Sara Tilley

Level I - Sunday, March 11, 1-5 pm

Level II - Sunday, March 18, 1-5 pm

4th Floor, Neal Building, 50 Harbour Drive, St. John’s


One Session: $40/$20 students

Both Sessions: $65/$35 students

TO REGISTER: email Sara at sara@saratilley.ca. Space is limited. If financial concerns prevent you from registering, please contact Sara to discuss possibilities. 


NEUTRAL MASK is a powerful tool for any creative person - it allows you to simplify, to reconnect to the physical body, and to live in the present moment. The neutral mask pares us down to the essential. It is a beginning place from which to approach any new character or project. This work is beneficial to all artists - actors, writers, musicians, dancers, visual artists - as well as to anyone who is curious about mask.

LEVEL I will focus on the essentials for work with the mask. We will use the mask as a clearing tool for the body, to help shed old habits, gestures and postures in order to be ready to take on new experiences. Neutral Mask work is moving meditation - an opportunity to exist wholly in the present moment.

LEVEL II will take the neutral mask experience further into its application as a sponge for energy and experience. Using the mask to channel different natural energies and to create the foundations for character, this session will build on the work done in Level I. We will look at a variety of ways to use the mask as a springboard for creative expression. (prerequisite Level I, or previous Neutral Mask experience)

Sara Tilley has a BFA in Acting from York University, and was mentored one-on-one as a Pochinko Clown and Mask Teacher with Ian Wallace. She studied neutral mask with Ian Wallace, Dean Gilmour and Jill Courtney, and incorporates mask work continually into her own artistic practice as a writer, actor, director and designer. As a teacher, Sara has worked with artists and non-artists alike in Neutral Mask and Pochinko Clown Through Mask since 2008. For more information on her work, visit saratilley.ca


Thank you to Common Ground for providing space for this workshop. 


Reading of White or Red

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A reading of new play in progress, White or Red, written by Sara Tilley. 

Featuring Kira Sheppard, Brian Marler and George Robertson. 

Dramaturgy by Robert Chafe. 

7 pm, November 1, 2017

4th floor of the Neal Building, 50 Harbour Drive, St. John's

Admission by donation. 

White or Red tells the story of three writers whose destinies become entangled, whether they like it or not. Leah is in her thirties, bisexual, and Canadian. She is coming to terms with a chronic, invisible illness that has ravaged her life. She's signed up for a writing retreat in rural Sicily, and arrives to find she is the only participant. Her host, Turner, is a gay, unwittingly misogynist ex-pat American writer in his 60’s, who was once famous. Tony is a macho, straight, unwittingly misogynist Sicilian writer in his 50’s who does odd jobs for Turner, sometimes. Themes such as national identity, homophobia, monosexism, trans- and genderqueer-phobia, sexual assault, violent crime, communication across language, chronic illness, revolution, food allergies, creation of community, altered states of consciousness, religion and art weave together to make either a very dark comedy or a tragedy with suckerpunches of clown when you least expect them. An exploration of the polarities of pleasure and pain, ecstasy and horror, what is said and what is done. 

Not suitable for children, strong language and mature subject matter.

*Please note that this venue is not fully accessible. There is an elevator to the third floor, but a set of stairs to navigate to go from there to the venue on the 4th floor. I am deeply sorry, I didn't realize this when I booked this space.

This project is supported by ArtsNL, the City of St. John's and PARC - Playwrights Atlantic Resource Centre. Space provided by Downtown Innovation: The Common Ground Study.