On the Couch with Nancy Black

Nancy Black Arts Review On the CouchWho is Nancy Black?
A director, writer, performer, activist, mother, sister, grandmother, friend, dreamer…

What would you do differently to what you do now?  
I would banish angst from my daily life, bring in unquenchable joy, become a much better artist, learn to speak French perfectly, spend more time with my family and friends, spend more time in the wilderness, go skiing every single winter in both hemispheres.

Who inspires you and why?
Uh oh…. this could go on for months! I am inspired by the love, courage and joie de vivre of my children Vallejo and Dashiell Gantner, by the vision and fire of people who struggle against prejudice to be accepted (see Duda Paiva in BLIND), by those who have helped change society like Annetine Forell, by groups such as Medicins sans Frontieres, by the extraordinary teaching of Philippe Gaulier, by so many artists…. from so many fields, some of whom I know, some just admired from afar, by my friends whom I love and admire so much, and without whom I would just give up in a puddle of tears.

What would you do to make a difference in the world? 
Stop the wars in the Middle East. Make sure that Donald Trump does not get elected President of the US.

Favourite holiday destination and why? 
Bermagui – because of the peace it exudes, and the power of the sea.

When friends come to town, what attraction would you take then to, and why? 
Melbourne’s markets – because they’re fabulous and unique and say so much about our life in this city. Also most of my friends – from around the world – care about food. Amazing, isn’t it?

What are you currently reading?
Elena Ferrante’s 2nd Neapolitan novel – The Story of a New Name; Hanya Yanagihara’s A Little Life; Murray Bail’s Eucalyptus; and the poetry (translated into French) of Brazilian writer Hilda Hilst.

What are you currently listening to?
Virgil Thompson’s opera 4 Saints in 3 Acts – which I’m directing for the Victorian Opera in September.

Happiness is? 
Seeing someone achieving their dreams.

What does the future hold for you?
Discovery! Surprises! Laughter, tears, despair and joy.

Nancy’s latest work, BLIND – is a solo work performed by renowned Dutch dancer/puppeteer, Duda Paiva, plays at Theatre Works until 19 March 2016, as part of the Festival of Live Art. For more information, visit: www.fola.com.au for details.

Image: Nancy Black