Hear More About BABEL From Our Artists
We had a fantastic post-show discussion surrounding BABEL, but not every question was able to be answered live with our artists. Check out some additional insights below about the production and how our artists approached this piece.
Did you write this for all generations, or would you expect baby boomers to react differently than Gen Z, millennials, and so on?
Jacqueline Goldfinger: I think of every person as their own universe. Every person creates their own language based on their personal experience (for example, someone whose mother died when they were young will have a different connection and reaction to a story about a mother-daughter relationship than someone whose mother is still alive). So while there are universal experiences, there are not universal reactions to, or connections with, those experiences. I always expect each audience member to have a different reaction to the piece, and I love that. However, I have found in talkbacks that Gen-Z folks are much more comfortable with the idea of technology being more invasive than earlier generations – just in general.
Why did you choose to integrate music into this play? How did you choose the pieces we heard?
Jill Harrison: Jackie and I are both music-inspired people. We are also both married to musicians, so it’s awesome to be able to connect these personal experiences to Jackie’s chosen musicality for the play. “Beyond the Sea” is woven into the script by Jackie. I then chose the music in and out of the piece based on wanting something ethereal, feminine, and deeply moving. Jackie wrote another play called The Arsonists, and she and her partner produced an album to accompany the play. One of those songs also fit the feeling of the world that I was interested in creating for Babel. Hence the playing in and out of that song. I also build visual worlds as a director and tend to begin this process with music and sound. I usually share a piece of music with the creative team and company at the top of a process that may or may not be used in the actual production. The song I used for this process was Errollyn Wallen’s Daedalus. This piece had the breath, humanity, darkness, and hope that I think emulates Jackie’s play.
When did you come up with the closing line to the play – right away or later in the process?
Jacqueline Goldfinger: I always knew that’s where we wanted the play to end, but we did a number of readings and revisions to get to the point where it made sense for that to be the ending.