Interview (excerpt from Birmingtonshire Post 27 Apr 2013)

(The following interview is in anticipation of a new work, "Monsters of the Sea (I)," which opens in Phoenix on June 21, 2013.  We caught Danowski in between the gym and the Mexican restaurant, a combination he swears is responsible for his good health.  At age 60, he already looks like a man half his age - plus 15 years - and he insists that it's the combination of exercise and spice that seems to reverse the aging process for him.  It's only 8am, and he's already worked a part time job, exercised, and completed a new Baudelaire translation, even though he doesn't speak French.  'But some day soon,' he optimistically quips.  He's terribly quippy these days, and with a production like this on the way, it's no wonder.)

I: It's unusual for us to start talking about an event this far in advance, especially with all the productions this season, but this requires a little more attention than usual.  This has a lot of talk already, and we wanted to add to that.  We hoped to be the first, but by now, we're lucky to be the third major publication to cover it.

CD: I believe you're actually the 4th.

I: No.

CD: Yes, I'm sorry.

(There is a pause.  It's a bit of a shock.  No one likes to be the 4th in anything.)

I: Well, regardless, we'll try to be the most thorough.

CD: Good luck, it's sometimes hard to get information out of me in a, you know, straight line.

(They laugh and they laugh.)

I: All right, then, Mr. Danowski.  Tell us what you might tell us, then, about this 'Monsters of the Sea.'

CD: All right.

I: It sounds epic.

CD: Oh, it is.

I: Good.

CD: Please don't interrupt.  Now.  In June, people, selected audiences, really, private audiences of about ten or twelve at a time, will be invited into my home to watch the first of this new series of works.

I: Why so small?

CD: I'm sorry?  (CD gets uncomfortable, because he thinks they're talking about something that they're not talking about.)

I: Why are the audiences so small for this?

CD: Oh, they can be any size.  We don't discriminate based on height.

I: Oh, sorry, I was referring to the number.

CD: Ah.  Aha, oh, yes, that.  Well, it's intimate.  Large and epic things will happen in a very small space, but we're creating a certain effect.  You see, the spectators will be witnessing a theatrical event, an art event, with media and dance and films and live scenes, but there is a much more pronounced ritual element to this, one that we haven't really embraced before, and there's a very good chance that the spectators will be pulled into the ritual.

I: Like in the olden days.

CD: If you like, yes, it's a return to the ritual forms of theater.

I: Wait, now I notice that you pronounce theater with the 'er' ending rather than the 're.'

CD: You have an extraordinary ear.

I: You really are something of a flirt.

CD: I'm really not, I'm terribly innocent, it just happens, we get in a room, and things start to spark up, it's not my intention, I'm sorry if this is inappropriate.

I: It's quite lovely, really, I can tell you work out.  Tell us about that.

CD: I've been working with a trainer, and it's really quite something, the Hollywood boys haven't gotten a hold of it yet, but it's all with refrigerators.  First, I run seven miles with a portable refrigerator on my back, as a warm up.  Then I do these jumps, where I walk up to a full size refrigerator, and jump up on it, and then back down, and so on and so forth, about 50 times, and then I lift the refrigerator for the free weights portion, then go back to the jumping, and I do a number of combinations, and then I swim through a moat filled with alligators, and then I hit the shower.  It takes about five hours, but it really gets the heart going.  It's something.

I: I can't even concentrate, please go back to the theater with an 'er.'

CD: Oh, that, that's just the Irish spelling, to show that we're not doing traditional English theatre at all, and really, that's not even...(He can't find his words, and he's thinking hard, remembering lost loves, thinking about wolves, being gloomy, but just for a moment.  He brightens.)  This is really the new form that I've been working toward for the past three years.  Every art form evolves, you know, the first Nadaists of the 1930's brought that home.

I: Where was this?

CD: In Buenos Aires, of course.

I: You should teach.

CD: Oh, I'm sure it wouldn't go well.  There would be lots of students complaining that it was too hard to follow, and that there were too many music videos, and half the work is in Spanish.

(And they laugh and they laugh and they laugh so much that they have to take a break.)

(To be continued.)


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