MARCUS

SHIELDS

ARTISTIC STATEMENT

"I am an artist working in theater and new media (internet video + streaming audio). I often work as a director though I do other things well.

 

I connected to classical music long before I began to understand it. My love of music came from visceral, exuberant experiences of sound and space and energy. Because of this, I try to make theatrical work that invokes that kind of direct, kinetic response.

 

My practice changes depending on the needs of the production though I always strive to be clear and elegant.

 

For me, the pinnacle of any operatic production comes at the end of room rehearsals, before the move to stage. The performers have embodied the blocking, developed connections, and gained musical confidence. They run through the show wearing their street clothes and muslin trench coats. In this rehearsal, elements come together for the first time, so everyone is attentive. Some performers will mark, but one of them will sing an aria or moment better than they ever will in performance. Often it is the one that matters most. The rehearsal has a sketched quality that feels intentional yet spontaneous. It blurs the line between life and performance. It is weird in a good way. It is opera at its richest.

 

My whole thing is that I'm trying to create that exact rehearsal as a production experience."