About the Book:
Investigates the influence of technology and visual art in the
work of Robert Lepage, leading figure on the international
For more than three decades, the dynamic multimedia performance works
of Robert Lepage have been produced on stages worldwide.
Celebrated for his bold, visionary aesthetic, Lepage has received
several high-profile commissions in recent years, including two Peter
Gabriel world tours, Cirque du Soleil's Ká in Las Vegas, a
dramatic staging of Wagner's Ring Cycle at the Metropolitan
Opera in New York, and Lorin Maazel's 1984 at London's Royal
Despite Lepage's prolificacy, and his status as one of the
pioneers of new media performance, little critical writing about his
work has been published, particularly in English. Ludovic Fouquet's
The Visual Laboratory of
Robert Lepage, translated for the first time into
English, thus presents much-needed in-depth analysis of Lepage's
strategies and practices.
The book's title references the experimentation so integral to
Lepage's creative process and the ways in which he and his creative
arts company, Ex Machina, have always been attuned to the synergistic
possibilities that emerge when art encounters science and technology.
Whether as a playwright, actor, film director, or stage director,
Lepage is forever in search of new mutations of form and expression,
and his unexpected narratives often write themselves out of
discoveries he makes when staging a piece – indeed stagecraft often
guides story in Lepage's creative realm.
This illustrated volume will be of keen interest for theatre
practitioners of all kinds, from set designers to directors, from
academics to fans.
What people say:
impressively detailed observations reveal the alchemy taking place in
Lepage's ‘visual laboratory,' as well as key influences that have
driven his innovative, imagistic theatre from its beginnings … This
book both reintroduces Lepage to scholarship and reminds us of the
central position Lepage occupies in contemporary theatre practice."
— James Reynolds
Visual Laboratory of Robert Lepage is essential reading for anybody
interested in new-media performance and represents a valuable next
step in the research of Lepage's theatricality."
— Aleksander Saŝa Dundjerović
"This book will be of great
value to those interested in understanding the evolution of Lepage's
creativity, as well as to artists, teachers, and students making
their own work with Lepage's practice as inspiration." —
"Ludovic Fouquet, in addition
to being an avid spectator at many of Robert Lepage's shows in Quebec
and Europe, has been a privileged witness to the working sessions of
the prolific playwright and attended many hours of rehearsal during
research for this book." — Louise Vigeant, in JEU:
revue de théâtre
"In illuminating Lepage's
methods of creation (where the text often appears only at the end of
a process of collective improvisation), [Fouquet] explores the wealth
of the playwright's work as well as his occasional failures."
— Marie Labrecque,
of Une longue,
About the Author:
Ludovic Fouquet is a visual
artist, teacher, director, and founder of the multimedia theatre
company songes mécaniques (Mechanical Dreams) in Blois, France.
Rhonda Mullins is a
French-to-English translator and writer in Montreal. She has
translated a number of works of fiction and non-fiction, including
translating The Visual Laboratory of Robert Lepage by Ludovic
Fouquet. She is a three-time finalist for the Governor General's
Literary Award for Translation (Canadian equivalent of the Pulitzer