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Z Space and Word for Word present:

Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s Epic Poem

The rime of the Ancient Mariner 

September 11 - October 12 at Z Space

Directed by Delia MacDougall and Jim Cave

Considered by some to be a "green parable," this epic voyage is a tale of man's crime against nature, with the shooting of the magnificent albatross—and the havoc which nature wreaks in return. Z Space’s stage will be turned into a sailing ship (Oliver DiCicco and Colm McNally, scenic design) surrounded by the sea and the elements (Hana Kim, video projections; Ray Oppenheimer, lighting, Matt Stines, sound; Nol Simonse, choreography; Nikki Anderson-Joy, costumes). We hope that you will enjoy Word for Word’s expansive take on this take on this classic epic poem.

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Previews - September 11, 12, 14, 15, 19
Opening Night - Friday, September 20
Additional Press Night - Saturday, September 21

Thursdays - 7pm
Fridays and Saturdays - 8pm
Sundays - 3pm

Post Show Events

September 29 — a collaboration with Fieldworks Collaborative – "navigating natural and social ecologies" – with a seafaring cocktail toast to Luke Cole's environmental work. Luke was an environmental lawyer and the co-founder of the Center on Race, Poverty & the Environment, in California. He was a pioneer in using legal work for the environmental justice movement.

October 10 — Eco-poetics: Join us for a special Z Space presentation of the Exploratorium's series that brings together practitioners from the fields of geography, ecology, environmental sciences, policy, design, and the arts to grapple with issues that shape contemporary landscapes.

Press Resources

The dedicated press agent for this show is David Hyry, who can be reached at daldenh@aol.com.

Illustrations by Gustav Doré

Rime in the press

Longtime Word for Word friend and acclaimed author Tobias Wolff and Word for Word charter member Nancy Shelby were recently speaking together at an event. When he asked what's was next for Word for Word, the following ensued per Leah Garchik’s column in the San Francisco Chronicle:

[Tobias Wolff] ended by reading a portion of a new novel, the audience rapt as the prose embodied a point he’d made, that literature allows you to “enter into the inner life of another human.” It reminded me of a conversation earlier, at the reception, between the honoree and Nancy Shelby, a founding member of the theatrical company Word for Word, which has performed some of his works.

In response to his query about their latest project, she said they were working on “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” at which he smiled and started quoting, with ersatz grandeur: “The many men, so beautiful!/ And they all dead did lie:/ And a thousand thousand slimy things/ Lived on; and so did I.”

Someone wisecracked about the “thousand slimy things” and politics, and Wolff responded, quite seriously, that the written word allows the reader to “be someone else, to see someone’s world.” As to those in power, “I wish they were readers,” he said.