About the Guest
Artistic Director of 500 Clown—a physical theater company that uses clown and humor to get the audience’s active attention—Adrian Danzig has performed at The Goodman theater, The Steppenwolf, The Second City, Berkeley Rep, and much more. A Brooklyn native, Adrian is an actor, director, teacher and alumnus of The School of the Art Institute Chicago, and also studied clown with world-famous physical theater performers like Philippe Gaulier and Dominique Jando. Through his work, Mr. Danzig aims to explore with the audience how the body can display and elaborate the full range of human emotions, from joy and happiness and particularly to fear and anger, with his company producing shows like 500 Clown MacBeth or 500 clown Frankenstein.
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Adrian Danzig: The Good Clown
Adrian Danzig (guest): There seems to be the idea in the world that if I’m beautiful and you, you are not a zero sum game in, in beauty or in talent or in in anything which actually creates community in the end. What’s real is that it’s infinite, that there is infinite beauty in the world and there’s infinite talent, and this is the subject of great crying for me. I just think it’s so touching. I’m going especially with the young girls and with women like this idea that there’s a limited number amount of beauty in the world or limited way of being beautiful, like these are terrible ideas.
Simone Salis (host): I am Simone Salis and this is Hoomans with today’s guest, Adrian Danzig,
Simone Salis: Artistic director of the physical theater company “500 Clown” using clown and humor to get the audience’s active attention. Adrian Danzig has performed at the Goodman theater, the Steppenwolf, The Second City, Berkeley Rep, and much more a Brooklyn native. Adrian is…
an actor, director, teacher, an alumnus of the school of the art institute in Chicago who also studied clown with world, famous physical theater performers like Philippe Gaulier. Through his work, Mr. Danzig aims to explore with the audience how the body can display and elaborate the full range of human emotions from joy and happiness to fear and anger with his company, producing shows like 500 clown macbeth or 500 clown Frankenstein.
Adrian Danzig: That’s pretty good.
Simone Salis: Pretty accurate?
Adrian Danzig: Yeah. I’m not from Brooklyn, but my father, my father was from Brooklyn. You know, I, I liked it. I like Brooklyn from Manhattan, but from an album.
Adrian Danzig: Sorry, that’s. You’re like the president you’re originally from…
New Speaker: So it is so funny that you say that because my other friends like we’re all like. So we have an internal sense of guilt because. Because we knew he existed. Oh, and we didn’t do anything about it. We knew he existed in the eighties. Like we, he was, he, he was, you know, before he was reality. He was already a horrendous person and when he existed in our city and we were kids, we didn’t have anything to do about it but couldn’t work out. What could have you done? I don’t know. We just like make it, make it clear that this is not acceptable. I don’t know.
Adrian Danzig: Oh, I don’t know what to do. Just to take New York away from him to be like, no, no, no, no. He’s part of like somewhere in between the East River and the sea. He was born in the sea creature, you know, you just slip Manhattan under his feet, like a table cloth and the people stay there. Okay. Uh, so sorry, you’re from Manhattan, but your father was from Brooklyn. When did you move in Chicago?
Adrian Danzig: Originally? I moved here in, what was it? Eighty eight, right after I graduated college in [inaudible]. 80 seven. I came right here. So it was like 87, 88? Yeah. But what did you do at the time? Like what’d you do? Go? Well, you’re a physical performer. So at the time who knew? You didn’t know. I just, I knew that I knew some things about the physical, but I didn’t know that I didn’t, I didn’t know I’d be, we’d be talking about this now. I want it to be, you know, just a, uh, well employed actor and I didn’t want to go back to New York because, well, because I was, I had had all that, that home baggage in New York, you know, I was just like, ugh. Like I had the sense that like I can’t make it there, I just can’t do it. It’s too hard.
Adrian Danzig: It’s too big. And then my good friends from, you know, from college who were from the Midwest or like, I’m going to New York, I’m going to kill it. And you know, they, they did in their way for the amount of time they did it for, you know, some of them are still going. I didn’t know how to be me. Essentially, I didn’t know how to be the person I am now in New York in the kind of context of my family. And so I just, you know, I couldn’t, I don’t think I’ve ever had better words to describe
Adrian Danzig: like because that sets I, whenever I moved to Chicago or
Adrian Danzig: slate, you know, Chicago now, then who knows. But I also felt the same, like to be myself, I can not be where I grew up as I was defined by also the environmental fact, whatever I need, I need fresh air, fresh site. And so you moved to Chicago? Well actually I tell a story about that a little bit because I have an clown. We went back to New York, we played 22, which was really fun, like homestart stopping ground and uh, and some high school friends came and in high school like I couldn’t, I couldn’t sing, I couldn’t, I couldn’t, not, not that I didn’t have, you know, I had a good year but I didn’t, I didn’t sing because I was too freaked out. Like it was too much to share in public. And so one of my best friends in high school comes and sees me do this show in which I’m singing.
Adrian Danzig: And he’s like, hey man, you did it. I was like, oh my God, right. We just found that out. I’ve been doing this for a decade of your head. Just forgot about it. I totally forgot you were still that person to him. Absolutely. And that’s, and that’s what I like that, that controlling idea of like, oh, who, who can we? But, but having said that, so I came here about three years later I had to go back to New York because my dad was dying and um, and then I stayed. I thought I was going to stay in New York for a year and that took six years and then by the time I came back I came back because I was like, the pull to come back here was pretty strong because I’m red moon was growing and I had remembered the, the ensemble feeling, the actual, the kind of family feeling of it, the sense of like, oh, let me become somebody I’m interested in becoming and this group is interested in seeing who that might be.
Adrian Danzig: And I wasn’t, I was, I was working in New York, but I wasn’t finding that. And I was like, hmm. I think I can think I can do that. So I actually applied for the, for a degree at the art institute and they gave me a full ride and I was like, oh, I’m going, you study there, what are you have master of fine arts performance performance. So they didn’t, you know, there’s a, the, the, the both, the, the exciting thing about that program and the crappy thing about that program is there’s, there’s, there’s no rigor. The strength of that is that it wasn’t defined. So I could really focus on what is clown.
Simone Salis: I’m going to say something silly there. You probably have to deal with from time to time. But um, when, when you say clown late, you know, the stereotype that comes to mind probably can picture it as the floppy red shoes, whatever it knows. Red Nose, red knows that the flower, the between physical and slapstick and mime and those things.
Adrian Danzig: Yes. And those. And that clone is real. And that comes. That comes from an American three ring circus where the clown is essentially denuded of any power because you can’t hold the intention of the three ring circus is to have no focus is to have, is to be just, just hits every second.
Simone Salis: It’s something you’re constantly like focus and bringing your attention to something different. You almost don’t have time to focus because something is always happening at the same time somewhere. Okay, so
Adrian Danzig: this is. So this is the. This is where the, the, the idea of the circus as chaos comes from like, it’s like, oh yeah, when you, when somebody says, oh that, that place, this circus. Okay. It’s like, it’s chaotic. It’s like who knows, but European one ring circus is the birth of the actual. We didn’t have enough money. Just one real. You know, what you had is a, you have seven languages within 1200 miles of each other and so you then have to have clowns who speak all those languages can speak music and stake body language and speak physical. So if you. So if they’re lacking in any of those, they can know the physical is the know. That’s the Lingua Franca.
Simone Salis: That was about to say. So it sounds like body language is almost the Lingua Franca of Europe, especially with this kind of entertainment back in there. We are talking about what it was in like a 19th century.
Adrian Danzig: Yeah. Anything before television. Television, television is um, you know, you, you, you show, you show it on the Sullivan show and then your entire audience has seen it as opposed to taking, you know, 10 years in a Vaudeville circuit
Simone Salis: and this kind of shows that you mentioned, not like the Ed Sullivan or other ones. They still had some heritage from like the Vaudeville in America or the even minstrel shows at first, kind of like a moving shows around the country and that kind of entertainment lake. That. So is that also had some physical performance, right? There was some slapstick and,
Adrian Danzig: and yeah. And also just because these are. Yeah, I mean there’s something really that, that history, the history of the Vaudeville and in the history of all those itinerant performers, like that’s a real, that’s a, that’s a way of life, that’s a training ground, right? And so that’s so that you’re actually in the context of always have of moving somewhere and having something to share, but not being like, unless you’re the headliner, like not being like the dude not having that content so that you’re like, you’re like, oh, let me figure it out. Like over the course of that 10 years of playing that circuit, your act is getting better and better
Simone Salis: perfected to the milliseconds. You’re gonna Laugh, you’re gonna cry,
Adrian Danzig: edited to iterative writing process right there, you know, and, and in fact, the, you know, the Marx brothers, you know, the Marx brothers were inspirational in that way. You know, there’s, there’s three stooges and there’s, you know, there’s, there’s other, there’s other trios is the Ritz brothers is an unknown trio, but there’s, there’s um, but they, uh, but we’re also kind of hearkening back to the silent clowns in general, the, the, the Keaton Lloyd chaplain people. Because they are essentially doing write down this.
Simone Salis: We are, yes, we’re a few not even knowing what is not even a half a mile. It’s a block from the original studios. The Sna from chaplains seem to 20 cool, but,
Adrian Danzig: but those guys put themselves in the context or put themselves in the position of, you know, essentially melodrama of being, seeing the world as something which is a little larger than them, a little more powerful, little confusing and they weren’t quite a able to shift the way their way of being to work in the world. But they persevered a and had this what, you know sometimes we refer to as clown logic of like, oh, let me, I’ll just do it my way. I’ll just, I’ll solve this problem my way. The basic conflict in that as cloud versus society and so now you’re seeing the clown as the individual, but there’s all sorts of different takes you in. Certainly in those three who the individual wants to be an individual sees themselves as. For me, it’s it, it has something to do with the character who quit pits himself against culture consulting society.
Adrian Danzig: And then it has to do with identifying the individual strength within, within the character. In the past it’s always been this classed thing where the character kind of knows where they fit. One of the things that that we started to play within 500 cloud and I started to play with in, in graduate school was this idea of seeing the clown and the culture which now exists, which I think is a fluid status culture. And I’ve been on. I’ve been in an elevator with a billionaire, but he’s dressed like I am right now. So you know like that isn’t, that isn’t how a billionaire shows up in Chaplin. I don’t know why I’m going here, but that’s where my head is gone. And if you think of like formal portraiture, it’s so held and posed and. Right. And this is actually part of what we’re inheriting as the idea of high status.
Adrian Danzig: There’s a composition to the painting there. They’re not just being painted. It isn’t a photograph, just doesn’t have. It’s actually an artist creation. And then when we see images of lower class in art are usually with their limbs bent or 19th century 20th, so they’re totally in motion and this sense of that of a character in motion has a. has a has an effect on on the. Yeah, on the on the viewer. And so on some level onstage we’re playing with like, Oh, who who’s in need? So the Bentley, the Bentley limbs on some level are like, oh, you’re moving somewhere because you need something or I’m connecting this because of my, my, my history as a, as a, as a, as an actor. The language we came up with in five and a clown was we. They need to suffer and experience. They need to have something happen to them and to receive it. And then two, as a result of that become augmented, we can just trace that really physically
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Simone Salis: I am Simonus Allison. This is humans with today’s guests. Adrian Danzig, founding member of 500 clown.
Adrian Danzig: So getting 500 clown board. It was a show and the show became an experiment and so then we started to see what else we could throw into the mix. You asserted to reason about this mechanisms and body language and social status and you wanted to. You wanted to mix it up and see how you contemporary lake in a contemporary way. Trying to see what else it could do, like we were like, we, the first version of, of a minute, Beth, which is their first show, was radically different from what we did. The flowers home. Well not even, you know, even two years later there was, it was started at three guys. It was a pump Molina and uh, and David Angle and myself and David just had a much more fearful nature than, than polarized. So David’s fear was an excellent engine for what needed to be addressed. And then so that put Paul and I in the, in the, in the role of pushing him towards things he could fear. And so we a little bit, we’re tormentors of him. So you,
Simone Salis: it’s about in 500 clown, I’m realizing and just in physical performance there is so much in common with regular narration in writing because you mentioned a characters want and desire, but we might be law if it might be money, it might be personal information, whatever. It might be a pen, it doesn’t matter. But
Adrian Danzig: in clown right now you’re getting to class and getting into good when it’s something you’re getting the clown can, can, can want, love or want or want the pen as much as somebody else.
Simone Salis: Okay. And that’s the contrast that a, an audience member can enjoy and see. Absolutely. Amongst the other things you have that and you also have different roles and situations because usually you, the character wants something. Then there is an obstacle in getting it right. It might be a hero in my anti here, whatever, but there is also like that obstacle. And then there are different factors that in a comedic situation they might push you towards that goal and you fall and die old most and then maybe you get it for a sec and then then you lose it again and then you get it again. But that’s it. So those characters dynamics, a character dynamics were also in the trio. Somebody more grounded in goes and explains works for the audience to, to work and navigate a bigger, uh, greater narration. And then there is someone else that
Adrian Danzig: pushing and like, yeah, like being, you know, being an idiot, it just like jumping into like, oh, there’s a whole. Let me jump into it. Like, oh no, no, no, stop, stop, don’t jump in the hole. Okay. Oh, that’s crazy. Okay. I’m not going to jump, but what about that whole, oh great. You know,
Simone Salis: how do you. Well, this parts I can kind of vendor San how you can write and improve and you see that much of the process of physical. It’s also an iteration. It’s an evolution. You correct it. And rightfully so I believe because even even more than than the words, you need to verify something physically if it works and then adjust it or not. But how do you write
Adrian Danzig: for physics? I mean, this is the thing that we were
Adrian Danzig: though, that that’s on some level that that’s what I think the answer is. It takes a long time. Okay. The answer is, is um, so that’s the fourth member of the group. That’s my wife Leslie, who is the, who is the person who is watching and says, oh, that’s the story. Can do that again? No, when you did that, you had to start together and then with a part.
Simone Salis: So she works as an objective. I like not just the audience but also well in between
Adrian Danzig: writer, writer, writer, she’s saying, look, this is what’s happening and then, and then, you know, we, as a group, as an ensemble, we were able to say, okay, look, that’s really off theme. Let’s go back to help you to record yourself. We, it probably does, but we, especially in the beginning we said if we wasn’t good enough to remember it, then it doesn’t exist. That’s very improvisation. This very much like improvisational theater. Yeah. Do you improvise on stage physically? Okay. So you and the that, that’d be dangerous. Sorry, I’m sure. I’m sure. Sure. It can be dangerous. I mean, you’re still here. Yeah. So far,
Adrian Danzig: you know, the only times uh, I got, I got hurt in that work was in rehearsal one time. I, I, uh, I was doing a rope swing and uh, and I just mistimed, you know, I had done it 10, 15 times and I was fine and I just mistimed the dismount and I had dropped like seven or eight feet onto my hip, onto a, onto a cement floor. And I, I landed and, and everybody thought it was quite funny and uh, and I couldn’t speak. I was like, I was just like a blindingly white hot pain and they, and they, you know, and they were like, okay, now they’re Adrian’s on the floor and, and we’ll just keep on going. And they started keep kept on going with her horse and they’re like, hey, come on, get up.
Adrian Danzig: What happened to your hips? Not just, well, I mean, just as a euphemism, but yeah, he’s just a good amount of pain. And I broke a rib in another rehearsal where, um, we were, I was, it was in Frankenstein and I was standing on the table and send a stupid way. And Paul was kicking the bottom of it and I fell and broke my rib and we actually had a little audience for that one. And that was hysterical. People thought that was hysterical. Of course they are, they’re little. They knew that. I know. I thought it was funny too, I didn’t like. And I was just like, you know, part of the funny was like, I can’t get up. I’m am doubled over in pain inside my lungs.
Adrian Danzig: God, not on purpose, but it have. I think I did some slapstick a few years ago. It was me in the bathroom bathroom. I slipped on a, on a, on a rug, and I happened to fall, uh, with my ass exactly on the volume of the radiator. And um, well I, I cracked my tailbone, I cracked my tailbone and I was just with the art and the toilet was in front of me. I just literally like was for a minute in the, but they had no audience. It was just me a painful with the tailbone. So that’s why I will never try anything physical. Barely dance first.
Adrian Danzig: Getting hurt is terrible. And then after a while getting hurt, it’s like, yeah, I got hurt. Okay. And then it becomes a pleasure and that’ll be, yeah, something. Write something in there, but it’s like, you know, we, you know, like, uh, it’s exactly analogous to athletics. Like it’s exactly.
Adrian Danzig: You ended up having a hunter or a degree in physics something. Yeah, you’re right. No, you’re right. And you’re talking to
Adrian Danzig: just dispersal of energy here and like how do I, how does this energy there, there is this, we’re going from this great potential energy to nothing and how to use zero that out without taking that into your bond.
Adrian Danzig: Right. Exactly. The point I was about to say, because if you make that explode in the wrong spot on your body, that’s when things break. It just needs to discharge itself. Well, I’m making it sound like if it’s simple, like yeah, I take the energy, I made it this there. But it is a little bit. I mean if you think of it
Adrian Danzig: in exactly that way, I mean, so that’s, I mean, and that’s the way that’s on some level, the way we think about these things. It’s like there was a, there’s a way of staying in the awkward which is, which builds energy in the body so that the, and this is actually, this has to do with the physical and the verbal in culture in the real world. A lot we, we dispel the energy that’s created from awkwardness or from uncomfortableness or all sorts of things through talking and uh, you know, and so for a piece like 5:00 Frankenstein, that’s interesting. Like where, how does, how do you create a monster? Like what, what is the tension pattern? A pattern of a monster. The answer in the show for the original 500 clown version of that with molly and Paul and I was that the Bruce, my character punishes, Shank Paul’s character by punching him in the arm.
Adrian Danzig: Like, don’t do that. It turns out Paul can receive an enormous amount and he’s granted he’s gritting his teeth and he’s so angry at the audience and letting this happen and the way he’s going to get back at them is he’s going to take it again. He’s going to take it again. He’s going to take it again. And he’s going to watch them suffer by him. Getting hit is a terrible moment. What we’re doing there, as Paul as is allowing the audience to experience the, a, uh, you didn’t stand up for me earlier and where we go to the audience and actually in our first audience, um, we had a four year old boy who stood up for him that’s easily stop that and they’re just told him to stop that stop. Oh, that’s beautiful. And uh, and then, and then bruce had to negotiate this through this four year old boy.
Adrian Danzig: Turns out he’s totally right. He’s totally unmasked. He’s totally, he’s like, he’s just a pure reaction. Yeah, he’s got it. He’s got a sense of fairness and he doesn’t have a sense that the theater that you should shut up and let the actors do what the actors do. And this on some level, this is the, this is the deepest politic of, of the work. It’s a good. It’s always about, for us that the liveliness of the interaction between the audience and the people on stage. It’s always about like, no, you’re here. You exist and we feel you. And what you do is in the show and the show was over. They showed can’t exist without you. That’s always happening. Everybody kind of. My definition of clown is clown includes comedy, but isn’t, isn’t restricted to one of the things we say is, is is normal people who live in a scale from them,
Simone Salis: 10 in clown lips from five to 15. I am Simona salice and these this humans, every Thursday there is a new free app, is ready for you to download on your favorite podcast app with a full transcript available on humans. Don’t work, but not just that. I’m often looking for book recommendations and I started asking to each gas to share the books that made them introspect the most, something that they wanted to share with the listeners. And now you can download their book recommendations every Tuesday in a new conversation, shorter than 10 minutes. And you can also find the list from each guest on books the homelands.org. Today’s guest is
Speaker 6: Adrian dances, founder of the theater company. $500.
Simone Salis: Body is warm. This is fundamental to the kind of art that you work on, but body also has its own course of, of it. It starts, it, it gets into a middle, and then I was told that there is a specific and for everyone. Yeah.
Adrian Danzig: Turns, it turns out, uh, so what’s the old um, but
Simone Salis: have you considered the fact that being a physical performer growing up, your abilities would change? Absolutely. And what was your idea when you were younger? What is it now that it. Let me say this. You are, I guess in your fifties. You’re in an amazing shave. I’m your fasting today.
Adrian Danzig: We’ll, we’ll see why. But uh, yeah, I mean we had a, I remember conversations with Paul, you know, being like, oh my God, what am I doing this in our sixties? Wouldn’t that be awesome? Like what the hell we’ll be doing. I be taking the 10 foot fall in my sixties. And so there was a fascination about it, but it does hurt. It hurts more. The body is like, I may not, like today I’m not in pain. I slept 12 hours on Friday and that does wonderous okay for my pain, but I usually can’t. Uh, like Dr House you take Vikatin I wish I could describe what I need. What I need. Is that stuff you like the cannabis cream that you can buy in, in Colorado, in California now, but he can’t get it here without a prescription in. I only have the wrong doctor.
Simone Salis: Okay. I’m really proud of the question that I asked you because the answer that I was like, yeah, the body grows and it hurts.
Adrian Danzig: That’s really interesting. Mean it really it, it. Uh, and so it gives you a different sense. I mean, so right now I’m in a, I made a space where I’m like, Huh, I don’t know that if I can sign a contract to be able to do something for 12 weeks, it’s some days you can’t, some days you absolutely can. And you’re just like, oh my God, look at that. I used to actually want to endure the pain of it and it was in the service of the, of the audience, you know, in my mind. And I, for what? For many reasons, maybe the pain is more, maybe I’m more sensitive. Uh, I’m certainly more sensitive [inaudible] I, you know, I can, I can cry at anything now. But, uh,
Simone Salis: so started like that when I was like 18. So now I just cry a lot.
Adrian Danzig: Yeah. Well, I mean that’s something that’s happening to me more and more now and I’m really loving that. I mean so much of it as sweetness. So much of it is just watching things happen between people, especially my kids especially, you know, just like it’s like, oh my God, it’s just overwhelmingly beautiful and this is the man and this is another, this is a discovery that has to do very much with is this, there seems to be the idea in the world that if I’m beautiful you, you are. Not that there’s a zero sum game in, in beauty or in talent or in, in anything which actually creates community and the. And what’s real is that it’s infinite. That there is infinite beauty in the world and there’s infinite talent and this is the subject of great crying for me. I just think it’s so touching. I’m going especially with with young girls and with women like this idea that there’s a limited number amount of beauty in the world are those that have limited way of being beautiful, like these are terrible ideas.
Simone Salis: Do you attach these beliefs to any kind of inner growth, spiritual growth that you have been personally pursuing in your life?
Adrian Danzig: Yeah, I mean I do actually. I think that, and again, I mean so I can talk about $500 loan as a, as a spiritual path. These elements that there are elements of our lives which are non zero sum. There is. There was an unlimited amount of beauty. There’s an unlimited amount of joy. There’s an unlimited amount of sorrow. There’s an unlimited amount, right? These are, that’s, that’s interesting and I wouldn’t know that necessarily if I hadn’t really been focusing on that on, on where does it come from and in kind of an improvisational, and this is the genius of improvisation on some level is I don’t have to decide how that’s coming. I have to decide, for instance, a physical experience of if I laid off 200 firecrackers on my crotch, I have to decide not to inhale when the smoke is thickest around my face because I won’t get enough because I did that and I didn’t get enough oxygen and I fell down.
Adrian Danzig: But I don’t have to decide if it’s gonna make me feel like I’m in despair or excited or angry or anything. I can look out into the audience and I can whoever I catch just be with them and that is going to give me the next moment. Like that’s where, that’s the genesis of like, it’s endless if I’m cocreating it actually with the audience that I’m actually in the moment and that that’s endless and it not only endless, but it’s also makes the audience essential. And now it is a partnership and this feels like, you know, Greek theater. Um, but that’s, that’s like, so that’s one of the, for me, spiritual aspects of it.
Simone Salis: Before we say goodbye, one, two sq. One thing, why you fasting
Adrian Danzig: today? Oh, I’m so I started, I started this many, many years ago. Once per week, once per week. Wednesday. I did it for awhile. Yeah. Yeah. Anyway, go on. Sorry. So it started as just like, again, a very physical, just like it was a reset for my guts, right? yeah. And then I was like, oh, this is interesting. This is marking a week for me. A week is such a strange, slightly arbitrary thing. Month has a moon a day, has a son, but a week is like, what the hell? I never thought about in that side. Do you know what I just learned that japanese people have? Well the kanji for the moon is a, the month. Oh, because it was for dilemma. So when you write that, it’s actually that. And, and uh, for, I literally just learned this and, and the day is the kanji, the for the son, for the son. Yes. So that makes it better, but I don’t know and that’s probably because I’m ignorant about the meaning of a kanji for a week, if any at all.
Adrian Danzig: But so, so, um, and so it started to function a little, like a sabbath for me, like, uh, because, because one of the big things about eating is a often do it with people. So when I’m, when I’m being social, say, oh, let’s get together for lunch, let’s have coffee. That’s right. So we do these things around food and we, and for me this is really important because especially if you come to my house or if we’re having some, if we’re having food together, we’re having the same food and we’re really physically becoming, we’re gonna make ourselves out of the same stuff, right? We’re gOing to actually, you’re gonna repeat the same things, rIght? So we are, we become more little like each other, you know, which is a beautiful thing to be doing as a friend I think. And so upsetting myself from that was a little problematic for me.
Adrian Danzig: And so I had to think about why I would be doing that, you know, is this too selfish? And was, you know, it was a, but it was a little, it was a little, it was a way of cycling into what became kind of a little meditative space. A little like, oh, let me, let me look. I a lot of time I spend in this, this kind of exterior world and this is more interior day just so that was, that’s actually how it began. And then it went on and on and on and I did four years and then I, when my kids were little too old that I couldn’t take the day of not eating, I couldn’t, couldn’t not have that, that comfort because it’s, it turns out like, so I’m back in it now and there’s, it’s hard for me still between like noon and three, especIally if I’m around food and I do a lot of food preparation in my house.
Adrian Danzig: And so I’m preparing food for other people and I’m not eating it. And that’s a whole discipline. Are you working on any, uh, new shows now? I am. I’m directing now. What are you directing? I’m directing a, a, uh, what was written as a two person robin hood and adventure stage, which is a theater for young audiences contract. So I’m, I’m messing with it. Of course. What’s interesting about this british legend to a bunch of inner city kids, um, you know, what do they know about and it kind of 500 clown way. The question is like, oh, what do they, what do they know about, about robin hood? Do they know robin from the rich and giving to the poor? Does that mean anything? Is it true? Is it from a position of power? Is it a white guy’s idea? Is it a british guys idea of like we like in, in this show as written, it’s important because there’s two, it’s written for two actors and there’s 18 characters.
Adrian Danzig: SO the accents are going to be important. And so as written there are all different parts of britain. We start rehearsal, it starts on October 20th and goes through through thanksgiving. It’s a, and I’m messing with it. I may, I’m making it into. So it’s written as it as two characters and it’s written as two guys, two blokes, as they say in england, and I’m, I’m adding a third actor, um, because I think we’re [inaudible] I’m interested in how the play can interact with and kind of add to the conversation about the gender binary being challenged and when you have two, two is such an exciting and great, um, number for theater because it’s, it’s, you know, it’s like, it’s got great conflict and conflict duality. But I’ve got this but, but these dualities are for the most part created, they’re fake, you know, there isn’t black and white only there are colors and gray, right?
Adrian Danzig: Like there’s like, and so and so I’m interested. So I actually thought of like male and female for me Was, I was a pretty hardy duality was lasting for a long time. And um, and it’s, uh, it’s, you changed your perspective. It’s in decline it since it’s running away, that’s the difference. I mean, part of it for me is, uh, you know, I have a lot of, a lot of friends who are kids who are, who are days now. I’m interested to see how that plays out for for them, for them because I don’t like. I think it might just be that that is a. I think it might be that there is a 10 year period where of course we’re like, eh, like I don’t want to be any of these things. I’d like to be all of these things and then maYbe there’s a time when it for other people we know, no, I’m, yeah, I’m, this is me, or that’s me.
Adrian Danzig: Or like I’m dumb. I’m not in this bY a number wrong in this body, you know, like these, all these things exist and I’m really excited about that and there’s something communal and kind of spiritually communal about, about, at the base of robin hood, you know, at the base of robin hood, it’s, it’s, there’s the state which is a, which is a zero sum game and there’s hunger and there is. And then there’s this band of people who come together who are all a little off balance and who are trading something, which is like when they, when they give something, they get more. I think that’s the. I think that’s the bridge from the original robin hood to, to this version that you’re
Simone Salis: so known, dualistic, known monadic gender spectrum fluid revision of robin hood with marginalized communities, Mexico, silver by andrea. Thank you So much for being here.
Simone Salis: Uh, and having a conversation with me. And thank you so much for being here. Thank you. Indian dancing makeS the audience think through physical work and body movement. He founded a theater company called 500 clown producing shows at the goodman theater, the steppenwolf, the second cd, berkeley rep, and much more. You can find the next dates of his performances visiting the website, 500 clown, five zero, zero cloud.com
Simone Salis: so far for this show, comes from you island, drink coffee or beer, so I won’t ask you to just donate some money to buy me one, but I will ask you to support the days and nights I spent working as an independent creator because producing humans is an incredibly rewarding experience that really brings me joy, but also takes hundreds of hours and hundreds of dollars each month. I take care of recorded writing, editing, creating graphics, coding for your website, publishing promoted in, reaching out for the amazing guests that I’m lucky enough to be able to talk to and we’d love. If you would like to keep enjoying new episodes in articles regularly, please show your support now and hoomans.org/donate.
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