‘The Making of Nightmare Dream’ reflects on the process of creating and producing a site-specific, immersive theatre experience within Toronto’s Historic Campbell House. In this conversation, director/creator Mumbi Tindyebwa and playwright Motion reflect on the origins of their collaboration, and key aspects of their immersive work—from concept to page to production. Before the creation of Nightmare Dream, the two theatre artists met while participants in artist development programs at Obsidian Theatre Company in Toronto. Discovering a mutual interest in multi-disciplinary arts, they set out to create an inter-disciplinary theatre production to be presented at Summerworks, which emerged into an exploration of the African’s experience with “the other.” Through this process, they explored themes such as immigration, Diaspora history, identity, race, colonialism, cultural legacy and reinvention, intergenerational conflicts, and the complex stories where these intersect. The site-specific nature of Nightmare Dream grew out of the concept of creating a story to counter the historical use of space within the Campbell House—one of the oldest remaining Upper Canada Georgian-era homes in Toronto. Inspired by an actual dream, the work developed into a series of haunting installations, which inhabited the whole house, requiring the audience to move with the narrative. From the workshop, rehearsal and production phases, the authors revisit the collaborative process of creating with a team to achieve the immersive experience. They discuss the functionality of sound, costume, performance, movement, and text, and the challenges of creating, performance, and producing within an existing space. They have continued to collaborate and develop new immersive theatre projects, including Motherland and Oraltorio: A Theatrical Mixtape.


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pp. 59-64
Launched on MUSE
Open Access
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