Warner Blake
The Soup Talks Trilogy: Voice of the Turtledove, Voice of the Hollow Man, Voice of the Machine

La MaMa E.T.C.
September 12-21

Written & Built by Warner Blake
Performed with Anna Burdak & Griffin Mainord
Production Manager: Karen Guzak
Voice of the Hollow Man features passages from:
Larry Heinemannıs Pacoıs Story‹recorded by Tod DıArms
Tolstoyıs War and Peace‹Russian recorded by Sergei V. Ostrovkin,
Napoleonıs Letter to Marie-Louise‹French recorded by Isabelle Calais

WARNER BLAKE: Trained as an altar boy to use Latin, I was called to the theater a long time ago. In 1981, after twenty-five years working and teaching as a scenic designer, I left traditional theater looking for a less collaborative way of working -- a process requiring fewer meetings. First, I renovated a warehouse space for living and working -- the only thing I knew for sure about being an artist was that you needed a studio. I began experimenting with puppets, doing street shows protesting the Reagan era arms build-up. Then, intrigued by the SALT and START arms' talks, my Soup Talks began as a notebook sketch in 1984. The idea became a three-part performance set upon and around a large conference table, and was presented in my studio over a four-year period beginning in 1988. The installation/performance steers audience member relationships away from anonymity toward acquaintance. At the intermission -- between stories exploring the past, present and faith of our civilization -- I serve each guest a bowl of soup. So within my decision to work alone, I discovered a way to make theater like a painter making a painting, plus I learned that what makes us truly human is our innate desire to meet and talk.