“A Day in the Life” with Toronto creative Erika Batdorf

Erika Batdorf is from Nova Scotia and has been creating absolutely unique performance work for a LONG time. She loves to go for long hikes in the desert, she used to go dancing a lot and misses that.

She teaches at York in the theatre department and would not give that up even if she got rich and could make art all the time. She works REALLY hard and makes a mean sage sweet potato soup.

Erika Batdorf - Zoe taking notes from her cell phone to her script? or checking to see if her lovely daughter is ok - Photos by Kate Gordon
Zoe taking notes from her cell phone to her script? or checking to see if her lovely daughter is ok – Photos by Kate Gordon
Erika Batdorf - Here you kinda get the whole picture minus the amazing team of smart folks doing the biosensor:digital technology work
Here you kinda get the whole picture minus the amazing team of smart folks doing the biosensor:digital technology work

vKate Digby the director, and Zoe Sweet… yes we are this tired.

Erika Batdorf - Kate Digby the director, looking serious- the digital technology in this show has been SO challenging to integrate- but we are getting there
Kate Digby the director, looking serious- the digital technology in this show has been SO challenging to integrate- but we are getting there
Erika Batdorf - Zoe and I working through this intense script copy
Zoe and I working through this intense script copy
Erika Batdorf - Yup, Zoe as the Gargoyle... or whatever she is... the creature in my studio
Yup, Zoe as the Gargoyle… or whatever she is… the creature in my studio
Erika Batdorf - the gorgeous garden we get to have lunch in by the art scape studio copy
The gorgeous garden we get to have lunch in by the art scape studio copy
Erika Batdorf - Anastasiya Popova, our amazing stage manager dealing with the ENDLESS props in this show
Anastasiya Popova, our amazing stage manager dealing with the ENDLESS props in this show
Erika Batdorf - Experimenting with how many ways Zoe can climb on me
Experimenting with how many ways Zoe can climb on me

What ‘hood are you in?

Well I live down by Park lawn and Lakeshore, where I can watch the ducks, but my studio is Queen West right at Shaw

What do you do?

I make performance work in Toronto and tour internationally. I teach performance/theatre/movement work up at York in the Theatre Department with some amazing colleagues. I sing in Germany from time to time, I am a Baha’i and love my bike. I have a 17 year old son and we play cards sometimes.

What are you currently working on?

The Red Horse is Leaving- a duet dealing with madness and creativity that integrates biosensors. I am working with a team of artists:

A choreographer Kate Digby, who is also the director of The Red Horse is Leaving, from Kansas/NYC and a team of performers I have trained over the years in The Batdorf Technique- a technique that teaches performers to access emotion through the body. We have learned that this technique works really well with biosensors, so we are also working with a team of art/scientists to integrate biosensors into performance work. We are working on a larger piece ‘The Simurgh Project’ for 2019-2020 and I just finished a very fun interactive performance installation with Mark-David Hosale called Burnish.

Where can we find your work?

Summerwork 2018! And Rendezvous with Madness festival through Workman Arts in October. Go to www.batdorf.org for more info and well, NY, Santa Barbara, Kansas…

 

 

Joel Levy
About Joel Levy 1251 Articles
Editor-In-Chief at Toronto Guardian. Photographer and Writer for Toronto Guardian and Joel Levy Photography