Play preview: Intimacy

Written and directed by UFV student Desiree Hale, Intimacy is a collection of personal stories relating to intimacy — what it means, the varying experiences, how the definition changes as people mature. It’s a study in relationships, sexuality, and identity.

Hale spent a month interviewing for stories on intimacy, then compiled it into a “large blog” to be arranged into a script.

“What I found, throughout the interviews, was that there were shared experiences and opinions and ideas,” Hale said. “The topics that got talked about flowed together pretty well.”

Intimacy’s script is made from roughly 10 people’s stories, including Hale’s own. She removed names for anonymity, and tried to treat each story neutrally when composing it to be Intimacy’s script. The many stories were arranged and divided amongst the play’s three performers.

Hale specified that she refers to performers as conduits for the script to be brought to stage, as opposed to individual characters. Because of the array of stories, she attempted to give the impression that there’s more than three people on stage.

Hale wrote the play to learn about others’ experiences, as well as share her own. She said she’s had to navigate new forms of intimacy with her girlfriend, which opened her up to talking about reapproaching intimacy, and the struggles that accompany it.

“I wanted to create a piece that could show the world this experience that I’ve been having, this journey that I’ve been having — discovering and reevaluating intimacy,” Hale said.

As a production, Intimacy is minimalistic in terms of lighting and design. For it, Hale was her own design team; this includes costumes, lighting, set, and sound.  

“It’s been an interesting challenge, and quite the learning experience, having to think about my show as a whole,” she said. “I’ve been thinking about it in these little chunks, like okay, this scene has to look like this, and what not.”

Having broached this complex topic, Hale wants to continue with playwriting and directing.

“I’ve definitely found a love for doing this,” she said. “It’s something that I’ve wanted to try for a little while. Now I actually have the opportunity to experiment with it, to learn and stumble, and get myself back up, and make mistakes and learn again. Intimacy itself is not going to stop here.”

Intimacy runs 30 minutes and is broken into seven scenes, divided by poems Hale wrote. It will run in D105, Feb 7–9, with performances Feb 7 and 8 at 4:30 p.m. and Feb 9 at 1 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. UFV performance dates and times can be found at ufv.ca/plays.

Image: UFV Flickr