EVANSTON - Northwestern University students from the American Music Theatre Project (AMTP) will travel across the Atlantic to perform in August at the prestigious Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the world’s largest arts festival.
The project marks the second consecutive year of AMTP’s partnership with the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland (RCS). Last year, the two schools collaborated on the thematically linked one-act musicals “Atlantic: A Scottish Story” and “Atlantic: America & The Great War.”
This year’s collaborations, “Legacy: A Mother’s Song” and “Legacy: The Book of Names,” will explore how cultural heritage travels and evolves over distance and time. The productions will be written and directed by AMTP and RCS alumni.
Graduating Northwestern senior Mary Godby performed last summer in “Atlantic: A Scottish Story.” She described it as a once-in-a-lifetime experience. “Every other day for three weeks, we walked to the venue -- a castle -- got dressed in the dressing room and performed. It was truly amazing to perform in such a beautiful place surrounded by tons of ingenious theater.”
AMTP artistic director David H. Bell described watching students discover the creative, cultural and social connections with RCS students in Scotland as “a profoundly exciting experience.”
“Theater is a collaborative art form. There is no better way to understand and appreciate another artist and to grow as an artist yourself than through the process of collaboration,” Bell said.
AMTP students Elijah Warfield (third from left) and Gabriella Green (far right) workshopping “Legacy: A Mother’s Song” for the 2018 Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
Theater major Gabriella Green is in the cast of “Legacy” and looks forward to working with the project’s European collaborators. She recently attended a Northwestern-hosted panel discussion with Edinburgh Festival Fringe Society CEO Shona McCarthy, who discussed the post-World War II origins of the festival and its purpose of raising morale.
“[McCarthy] spoke about the arts as a method of healing and creating community. The Fringe was created by and for the people with an emphasis on anyone being able to participate who wants to have a voice and make a statement. I’m looking forward to working in that environment,” Green said.
“Legacy” cast member Elija Warfield said “bringing to life new works that mean so much to so many people is intimidating, but I'm excited to be surrounded by such amazingly smart, talented and kind people and to be part of that creative process.”
AMTP and the RCS will present “Legacy: A Mother’s Song” and “Legacy: The Book of Names” from August 3 to 27.
AMTP is a member of the Northwestern Arts Circle which brings together film, humanities, literary arts, music, theater, dance and visual arts.