86529: Performative Spaces: The Wild Duck

Considered to be Ibsen’s greatest masterpiece, The Wild Duck is a rich and powerful narrative that turns away from romantic ideals toward more realistic renditions of family life.

On the return from a self-inflicted exile, Gregers Werle re-connects with his estranged friend Hailmar Ekdal and uncovers a series of dark truths surrounding his family life. In an attempt to liberate Hailmar from the weight of these truths, Gregers ultimately destroys the family by causing Hailmar’s daughter, Hedvig, to tragically shoot herself in the chest.

Throughout the narrative, Hedvig’s wounded wild duck acts as an allegory for the character’s emotional exchanges. In the wild duck’s garret, an attic-like space where the characters play out their fantasies, alternate parallel worlds diverge from reality. This studio will explore these alternate realities through each character’s real and perceived identities. These will be addressed in relation to contemporary ideas of identity where critique and reinvention are constant mechanisms in the performance and authentication of our personas.

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