with Mhairi Fyfe
me2, a new play, based on stories by Alberto Moravia, explores the split between a womans inner self and the reflected self she exhibits to the world. With actor Mhairi Fyfe and musician Archie Hughes, directed by Ronald Weihs. (Produced by Artword Theatre.)
A new theatre work explores the
psychological fragmentation in the lives of modern women in response
to the stress of contemporary life. Entitled
me2, the two-part play depicts
two women who each respond to intolerable strain by creating a double
life. The work was developed collaboratively by director Ronald
Weihs, actor/singer Mhairi Fyfe, and musician Archie Hughes, based on
two stories by Alberto Moravia, one of Italys leading postwar
The first half, The Orgy, presents a conventional housewife obsessed with the sordid life of the woman in the flat opposite, "a woman very like me, almost my double."
The second half, The Wardrobe, shows us a woman whose feelings of love, and fear of pain, are so intense that she "effortlessly divides herself" into two women, one "delegated to have relations with the world" and the other observing, locked in a prison of her own making. Both pieces combine sophistication and wit with a dark inner psychological core.
Artword Theatre is closely associated with Artword Artists Forum, a magazine by and for artists, recently profiled by Bronwyn Drainie ("Absence of artspeak makes Artword a treat", Globe and Mail, June 18). In March, the production of Mama Says: You Are What You Do, an original musical, written, directed and produced by Weihs, marked the launch of Artword Theatre as a dynamic new centre for theatre in Toronto.
Mhairi Fyfe, a Nova Scotia native, is a talented actor and singer. Her performances include Beatrice in The Changeling, by Thomas Middleton for the Revelling Theatre Company at Alumnae Theatre; the daughter in Dragons Teeth, at New Ideas Festival, written and directed by Diana Kolpack; and roles in several mummers plays with Whole Loaf Theatre. Mhairi also pours her energies into composing original material with keyboardist Archie Hughes.
Archie Hughes is a versatile pianist and talented composer. As well as writing songs with Mhairi, composing film scores and playing keyboards with the Celtic rock band Taliesin, he has been an architect for the past ten years.
Ronald Weihs is an author and director of wide experience. In Toronto, he is best known for his collaboration with director George Luscombe, The Wobbly, and for the musical The Beavers, produced by Native Earth and Theatre Resource Centre in 1990. In British Columbia, he acted and played the fiddle with the Caravan Stage Company and wrote their first major musical production, Hands Up: The Bill Miner Story. In Vancouver he wrote and directed Highball!, a play about loggers that was subsequently toured through logging communities.