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In Conversation: Psychoanalysis and the Arts

In Conversation: Psychoanalysis and the Arts

Title: The Actor, The Performance and The Other Scene: Truth and Reality in Theatre and Psychoanalysis

Diego Matamoros, actor, Soulpepper Theatre Company (Toronto)
Mavis Himes, psychoanalyst, Speaking of Lacan (Toronto)

In spite of their differences, theatre and psychoanalysis share a number of common elements. Both involve a particular kind of staging, the creation of a unique performance. In theatre, this involves the actors and the audience; in psychoanalysis, it involves the analyst and the analysand. In both instances, an event is set in motion which involves the anticipation that something is going to happen. Due to the power of the unconscious, ‘that other scene’ of psychoanalysis, which produces effects of which we are not always aware, the staging in theatre and psychoanalysis always entails an element of the unknown, the unpredictable. 

Using the play The Aleph: After Borges as a backdrop, this workshop will explore a number of themes common to both psychoanalysis and theatre: the nature of memory, the relationship between the act and the performance, the construction of illusion and reality, the nature of truth and the distinction between fact and fiction. There will be an attempt to address such question as: What is being staged, in each discipline, and how is that reality constructed? What is performance and what is reality? What is the nature of subjective truth and how is it played out?

Time & Location

Date: Saturday, June 4, 2011

Time: 9:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Place: Women’s Art Association, 23 Prince Arthur Ave. Toronto, ON  M5R 1B2

Fee: $25.00 ( students - $10.00)

PLEASE NOTE: The performance run of the one person, one act play The Aleph, After Borges will be on at Soulpepper Theatre from May 14 until June 4, 2011. While it is not essential to see the play in order to register for this event, it will undoubtedly help in order to engage more fully in the discussion.

Please R.S.V.P. by phone or e-mail.  Mavis Himes: 416-969-8706 or

For more information:

Receipts will be available at the time of the presentation.

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