As an official media partner of the 12th annual St-Ambroise Montreal Fringe Festival, Montreal Theatre Hub brings the #FringeBuzz in 2021 with an all-new interview series with artists from this year’s edition of the fest! In this Snapshot, we feature NO ONE – writer and performer of the poetry-song piece ‘For what lay in the invisible’. Read our Q&A interview with the show’s creator as it plays from June 1-20 on the FringeTV platform.
MONTREAL THEATRE HUB: What is For what lay in the invisible about?
NO ONE: My fringe show is about what lay in our invisible. It’s about someone reconnecting to themselves and their frequency in a loving and understandable way. I think It’s about finding love and compassion inside of ourselves but it also speaks of one’s brokenness.
MTH: What can audiences expect from the experience of seeing it?
NO ONE: It’s a visual poetry presentation that is accompanied by music. It’s someone talking about themselves and what their body made them experience. This piece speaks to the body as if it was sometimes a separate being or the seat of the soul. It moves from self-hatred to compassion and gratitude.
MTH: What was the idea and inspiration behind the piece?
NO ONE: I think that the reason why I write is to process or understand things. I had pages of writings and poetry but I hadn’t yet put them together. I wanted to explore what brokenness looked like inside of oneself. One inspiration came directly from the Ho’oponopono meditation. It’s the second song For us. I found myself changing the order of the words again and again so I tried to make them my own. Autophagie and Une lettre à mon corps existed prior to the text. These songs showed a sort of evolution with the way the body was addressed. The first one addresses the body as something separate from oneself and the second one addresses the body as parts of oneself. I believe that the music and the text fit well together.
MTH: Why did you choose the Fringe as the place to present this work?
NO ONE: I wanted to debut my first play last year at the festival but the pandemic happened. I’ve always liked the Fringe. I’ve seen other artists work in Fringe in the past years and it made me want to do something there. I’m very happy to have the chance this year to present something on Fringe TV.
MTH: What has it been like trying to create a show during a pandemic?
NO ONE: It’s been very difficult to create during the pandemic but I’m extremely grateful to be in a position where I can create. I had the opportunity to take part in a lot of things during the pandemic that nourished my artistry. I write a lot with movement as writing is part of my spiritual practice and for me, I feel as though it’s more difficult to create during the pandemic but at a time like this it’s probably more important as art grounds me. I’m also at the beginning of my artistic journey so implementing a routine and learning about the industry takes me a lot of time.
MTH: What’s kept you driven to keep creating during this past year?
NO ONE: Writing is my home. It’s the place where I can come home to myself. I think It’s where I can learn and grow the most but more importantly, it’s where I can free myself. I always put all of myself in my writing. I put the parts that I don’t love yet and those that I most appreciate. When I write, I create a space where I can exist but it’s also a place where there’s no discrimination inside of myself. I often use my flaws and limitations or what I think are my flaws and limitations in my writing. It helps me to question myself and the world around me. Every part of me, the beautiful and the ugly come together to create something that is often bigger and more meaningful than us and it always makes me happy and grateful.
The fact that my writing could reconnect roots and stories that have been severed is one of the things that always keeps me driven. With writing, I can pay homage to my ancestors as I might get the chance to be in a position where I can contribute to the elevation of BIPOC voices in the future. If that happens, I would like my work to contribute to the healing of personal, collective, historical, and ancestral wounds. I also just need a place where I can reconnect with myself and the world around me especially in difficult times. Writing allows me that, It also makes me remember that life is precarious and that my time here is limited.
MTH: How does this show/story speak to our present times?
NO ONE: For what lay in the invisible is for me about acknowledging our invisible, making silences speak. It was for me about writing the body which I think can speak to our present time as it has been on our minds for over a year now. It’s a piece of reconciliation between the mind and the body but it’s also a grateful piece. I believe it moves from aversion to understanding to gratitude and love.
MTH: #Fringebuzz: which show(s) on the 2021 lineup are you most stoked to check out?
NO ONE: How the Fables Have Turned, Le Grand Docteur St-Eloy, Holding Waterways, Blxck Cxsper: No Justice, No Peace, Winter.
No one (she/her) is an emerging singer-songwriter and writer based in Tiotia:ke/Montreal. She’s an undergraduate of French literature from the University of Montreal. No one’s work focuses on vulnerability that she explores through the internal landscape of emotions. She believes in the cathartic proprieties of art and uses it to undress silences. Her first play, Aborted was developed at Playwrights Workshop Montreal on the Young Creator’s Unit and further develop with the help of a Jeunes Volontaires grant. No one is also a past participant of the 2019 Artista program at Imago Théâtre and the Black Arts Mentorship at Theatre Passe Muraille. As a singer, No one has performed at Trois-Pistoles en chanson, Udem en spectacle, Festival musique-jeunesse.
FOR WHAT LAY IN THE INVISIBLE presented by No one runs from June 1-20 on FringeTV. Tickets ($6) can be purchased online at www.montrealfringe.ca
Read here all of the interviews in the Fringe Artist Snapshots series: