ADDICTION – SPRING 2014
This Hunger Cycle play will take us into the realm of hunger as it connects to addiction. We’ll explore how the hunger for emotional fulfillment—love, respect, connection, spirituality – is “fed” through extreme and often self-destructive behaviors such as overeating, drug abuse and sexual addiction.
Our partners will include addiction treatment centers, self-identified addicts, eating disorder specialists, and health professional.
We’ll seek to answers some challenging questions: Is addiction an external solution for internal needs? Are addictive behaviors about seeking reconnection through disconnection? Ultimately, what is the outcome we seek by repeating destructive behaviors?
“I’m interested in exploring how the most basic needs of a human being can get hijacked into a far more dangerous expression of some deeper desire. What is that simple click, gene or chemical process that happens to allow one person to stop and the other to drive headlong into self-destruction?
I’m also fascinated by the idea of functional or functioning addicts-- many of our artists and writers have been-- but even more so by the workaday office person who holds down a job, pays their bills on time, raises kids successfully and is a contributing member of society. What does that do to the morality piece of addiction hysteria in our country?"
Born in Bombay, India and raised in Mombasa, Kenya, Shishir holds an MFA in acting from The Conservatory at University of California at San Diego. He has studied the Suzuki actor training method in Japan with the internationally acclaimed Tadashi Suzuki and was a student of Anne Bogart. Shishir wrote and directed Ghurba, Cornerstone's Arab residency production, as part of the Los Angeles Festival, and directed and composed songs for the site-specific hit Candude, or the Optimistic Civil Servant. He also wrote and composed songs for the Watts production of Sid Arthur and the company's tenth anniversary production of Birthday of the Century. He is a recipient of the Princess Grace Award for Theater, as well as Garland awards for acting and composing. Shishir's many film and television credits as an actor include ER and the film City of Angels.
For Cornerstone, Juliette has directed community collaborations Los Faustinos by Bernardo Solano, As Vishnu Dreams by Shishir Kurup and Lethe by Octavio Solis, as well as Literature-to-Life productions The House on Mango Street and Warriors Don't Cry. Juliette was an Artistic Associate at South Coast Repertory Theatre for seven years. She directed regularly in their season and ran the Hispanic Playwright's Project, collaborating with Latino writers across the country. A graduate of the Yale School of Drama, she has directed theater extensively throughout the US. Some of her favorite collaborations have been directing the West Coast premiere of the 2003 Pulitzer Prize winner, Anna in the Tropics by Nilo Cruz at South Coast Repertory, the World Premiere of References to Salvador Dali Make Me Hot by Jose Rivera, also at South Coast Repertory, and the West Coast premiere of Sam Shepard's Eyes for Consuela at the Magic in San Francisco. She has directed for the Alliance Theatre, TheatreWorks, Laguna Playhouse, New Jersey Shakespeare Festival, Actor's Theatre of Louisville and for the Mark Taper Forum's New Work Festival, as well as workshops in New York theatres such as New York Theatre Workshop, The Public, INTAR and The Women's Project. Juliette is a recipient of several awards, including the prestigious National Endowment of the Arts/Theatre Communications Group Directing Fellowship and the Princess Grace Award. She also participated in American Film Institute's Directing Workshop for Women, where she wrote and directed her first short film, Spiral, which played in nine film festivals around the country and in Europe, garnering finalist recognition in several. She is currently writing a full-length screenplay and developing several theater projects in the Los Angeles and Bay areas.