Tales from The O'Neill: Solid Sand Below & Samsara from the Playwrights Conference

By Sophia Saifi
11 Jul 2013



Lauren Yee and Seth Bockley
In The Solid Sand Below, Zimmerman's characters drink sewage, describe their comrades' deaths through images of blood and sand, and journey, searching for fulfilment, through grit-filled streets in both Iraq and the United States.

"It is quite different from anything that I have experienced," said Goldberg, elaborating the visceral power of watching The Solid Sand Below. "Artists get to a point of violence and there is a black out or a a blast but he (Zimmerman) is actually trying to theatricalise that moment, and it is really interesting."

Directed by Ken Thompson, The Solid Sand Below's cast was made up of Felix Solis, Terrell Donnell Sledge, Ryan King, Brian Quijada and Scott Drumond.

Meanwhile, playwright Lauren Yee's Samsara is a look at the complexities of surrogacy and the yearning associated with wanting children.

Samsara is a Sanskrit word which means a "continuous flow." In Hinduism, this flow is the continuous cycle of birth, life, death and rebirth. Samsara the play follows the same circles of desire, loss and epiphany.

The play follows a young American couple and the tenuous connection they have with their feisty Indian surrogate. Samsara deals with tropes of the exotic, of what defines the other and how cultures can clash, combine, and create all at the same time.

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