Interview: Zen Zen Zo founder Lynne Bradley
Saskia Starck | On 17, Oct 2013
Zen Zen Zo is a physical theatre company known for its innovative work with movement and acting.
Founded by Lynne Bradley & Simon Woods in 1992, the company has continually produced innovative self-devised works to radical reinterpretations of the classics.
Lynne and Simon spent five years living and training in Japan working with Tadashi Suzuki, the renowned theatre director who created the Suzuki Method.
From here they brought this style of theatre back to Australia and have continued to share their unique performances and training with the world.
Creative Drinks interviewed one of the founders of the company, Lynne Bradley.
CD: What is the vision behind Zen Zen Zo?
Lynne: Zen Zen Zoâ€™s aesthetic was forged between the ancient Asian dance-theatre traditions, the European avant-garde theatre movement, and contemporary pop culture, where sound, light, movement and spectacle communicate meaning and experience.
Zen Zen Zo believes in a theatre of contact, in which the relationship between the actors and the audience is at once intimate and shocking, compelling and confrontational, ritualistic and profane.
CD: Can you explain the influence the Suzuki Actor Training Method has had on your company?
Lynne: In terms of the influence of the method, Zen Zen Zo uses it as foundational training to build dynamic performers – strong in body, voice and mind. Derived from the Japanese martial arts. It’s a kind of ‘warrior training’ for the actor!
CD: Can you tell us about the training you provide for aspiring actors?
Lynne: Zen Zen Zoâ€™s TRAINING CENTRE offers a holistic program that caters to actors, physical theatre performers, dancers, directors, young artists, teachers and schools. Â Our motto is ‘Inspiration ~ Perspiration ~ Transformation!’ because we believe that anything is possible if you dare to dream big, are prepared to work hard, and get the right encouragement and guidance along the way.
CD: What does the future hold for Zen Zen Zo?
Lynne: In 2014 the Performance Company will be in full swing with 2 tours; a new one-woman festival show, and a revitalised classic that will be staged in both Brisbane and Melbourne, plus four Youth Productions!
The Training Centre will once again be offering its suite of intensive training programs & weekly classes, as well as the five-month internship for creative leaders and entrepreneurs, and the newly launched Youth Ensemble for 15-18 year olds.
It is exciting to note that the January week two intensive, Stomping Ground, will feature Younes Bachir ex collaborator of legendary Spanish theatre company La Fura dels Baus!