Based on Ovid’s Metamorphoses, the poem that also inspired Shakespeare’s Titus Andronicus, If We Were Birds is a poetic re-telling of the myth of sisters Philomela and Procne.
Erin Shields spins this ancient tale into a modern parable about the horrors of war. While Procne’s husband Tereus lusts for the blood of battle and the spoils he has reaped from pillage and plunder, the audience bears witness to the true aftermath of war as revealed through a chorus of women’s voices and testimonies of loss and suffering. Ultimately a story of triumph, Shields gives wings to her protagonists and sets them free to soar above indignity.
If We Were Birds was first workshopped in 2008 at the Toronto’s Summerworks Festival receiving the award for Outstanding Production. It later premiered at Tarragon Theatre where it went on to win two Dora Mavor Moore Awards.
In 2011, If We Were Birds, by Erin Shields won the prestigious Governor General Award for Drama.
Erin Shields is both a playwright and actor. She is Playwright-in-Residence at Tarragon Theatre and is currently adapting Ibsen’s The Lady From the Sea for Shaw Festival’s 2015 season.
Kim Renders (director) is a co-founder of Nightwood Theatre, former Artistic Director of Theatre Kingston, and one of the founders of Kingston’s only Queer/Feminist performance group, Chipped Off Performance Collective.
Please note the opportunity to attend a special sunrise presentation on Februaly 7 at 6 a.m. (formerly posted as 7 a.m.)