Grief Objects

Company One Theatre has been based at the Boston Center for the Arts for more than a decade, and one of the best things about it has been the opportunity to connect with other resident and visiting artists on the campus (like our longtime studio neighbor, Elisa Hamilton!). In a true moment of serendipity, we realized that the BCA’s Spring 2022 Run of the Mills residency — which culminates in 2 performances this week — is deeply connected to the thematic work we’re undertaking in our own rehearsals. And we’re rehearsing just feet away from the BCA’s Mills Gallery. What luck!

Laila J. Franklin has created Grief Objects, a “multidisciplinary gallery walk and performance” that invites audience members to “explore a collection of personal objects — physical and digital — that have been archived in grieving processes over the last 3 years in a space activated by live dance and sound performers.”

The play Black Super Hero Magic Mama takes us through a harrowing journey of a mother’s grief, her fight to reclaim her own mind, and perhaps to heal. That journey is catalyzed by the comic book her murdered son created. As a “grief object,” the comic book possesses enormous charge and power. We’re so curious, how will resident artist Laila J. Franklin reckon with the similarly changed flotsam of life after a loss? The pre-show materials for Grief Objects offer this prompt:

Why do we hold onto these objects?
How do the objects of grief constantly object to grief?
When do they become gifts?

This Friday, our cast members and dramaturgs will attend Grief Objects. We can’t wait to see how Laila’s work might illuminate our own explorations of grief and healing.

Stay tuned for the post-show report!