Sophie Wood is a Renaissance woman of performance art. She is a clown, playwright, costume designer, puppeteer, dancer, organizer, mask maker, and farmer. But above all, Sophie is a collaborator.
Nearly all of Sophie’s projects are inextricably and beautifully bound to those of fellow artists. It is in this melting pot of ideas and experiences, the “social” in “social change,” that Sophie finds inspiration. Sophie is on staff at The Chelsea Funnery, the Vermont Governor’s Institute of the Arts, and The Royal Frog Ballet.
Space, in addition to collaboration, is an element intrinsic to the nature of Sophie’s work, as she explains in an interview with C3, a cultural group in Northampton:
“Creating good spaces in life is an art form that I like to cultivate […] I consider place or space a collaborator […] On the streets of Somerville in a clown nose holding a silent tuba, or the streets of Salvador, in circus pants, or the streets of Castleton with a samba drum, or the streets of Northampton in sequins and silly shoes, or the streets of Chelsea, rehearsing the death scenes in Hamlet, or any street, or green or backyard that I’ve gotten the opportunity to be with a big group of cohorts, collaborators, and playmates to use costumes and bodies and props and music and food to color outside the lines of everyday life and celebrate being alive.”
In April, Sophie and The Royal Frog Ballet will present an outdoor performance and ritual eating event: “set in an orchard with sculpture, dance, song, storytelling and food. Local and touring artists will collaborate with a local chef to create a bawdy, reverent, stark, and joyous celebration of the land and exploration of the sensations of spring.”
Before then, don’t miss Boundless, “a collaborative dramatic experiment in epic theater co-directed by printmaker and puppeteer, Erik Ruin, and Sarah Lowry of the Missoula Oblongata,” March 14-16 in Providence, for which Sophie will be performing a masked dance piece on “out of body experiences,” from death to dreaming to pins and needles.
Finally, Sophie has recently started a new farm job and is in the process of finishing her winter quilt.