|Anne Galjour, writer of The Cinderella Principle.
Award-winning solo performer and playwright Anne Galjour recently spoke with the SF Bay Times about the upcoming interdisciplinary work, The Cinderella Principle: Try these on, see if they fit. Here, the 30-year SF resident has collaborated with boundary-breaking choreographer Robert Moses and his dance company Robert Mosesâ€™ Kin. The work weaves her text â€” based on family interviews â€” into the performance which explores identity and love in non-traditional families.
(Bay Times) How has the process been working on the Cinderella Principle?
(Anne Galjour) Itâ€™s been out of my comfort zone, and thatâ€™s been great! The project is about non-traditional family. In the 14 interviews I did, there were parents who involved with international adoption, domestic adoption, trans-racial and interracial families, families with double dads, double moms and single moms by choice.
One of the things that came through was that straight white families are the minority in San Francisco and [there are] many other issues the families I interviewed have to deal with. All of the people I spoke with did not have children until they were in their 40s. In urban life because of the present socio-economic situation, they want to get their education and careers established first and then feel ready for a family. The trend makes sense but actually nature starts working against you.
Robert Moses is an amazing choreographer. The beauty of his work is that itâ€™s very layered. The dance is filled with subtext, and its layers have meaning. Things get revealed in different sections. This has been an interesting assignment for me to provide and create language that is provocative and evocative for him so that the audience member can make their own story in their hearts and souls.
The vocabulary of gestures, of movement and also Todd Reynoldsâ€™ incredible musical score, the combination of these two, can communicate so much where words stop. I got really clear about letting the language support via contrast and complement whatâ€™s going on onstage, to invoke thought and feeling as a part of a whole gestalt.
I got to spend time with women who have partnered with gay men to have a child, usually a man with a male partner. One woman [I interviewed] lives in the in-law apartment, and the gay couple lives on the first floor, and the three of them live as a family raising the child. What has moved me deeply in this process is to see people going from not believing they can be a parent to realizing they are able to have a family. Also, young gay and lesbian couples are going through the process of adoption. Gay and lesbian couples have adopted most of the African-American children in the foster system. They have stepped up to the plate and are owed a debt of gratitude for that. In any given time there are 30,000 children in Alameda who need homes.
30,000! Thatâ€™s a city! Have you ventured into other states outside of California during this interview process?
No, I havenâ€™t. But as they say, â€śAs goes California, so goes the nation.â€ť As we are a global economy, we are also a global family, and we are reflecting that. Part of what I wanted to do with this was, with love and respect, to give voice to what appears to be a silent majority in our community.
And what better venue than Yerba Buena Center for the Arts to do it in.
Thank you so much for talking with us.
The Cinderella Principle runs Feb. 25-27 (Thursday to Saturday at 8pm) at the Novellus Theatre, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 701 Mission Street, San Francisco. Tickets ($20 to $35) call (415) 978-2787 or at ybca.org. Info at robertmoseskin.org.