ANITA ROCHON is a director and theatre maker. Since 2006, she’s been the artistic director of The Chop with Emelia Symington Fedy. The Chop is an award winning Vancouver-based company whose work is known for its sophisticated experimentation with authenticity and involves non-traditional collaborators and some of the finest artists working in Canada. The Chop tours nationally and internationally with past presentation in Toronto (Factory Theatre), Victoria (Belfry) Burnaby (Shadbolt Centre for the Arts), Richmond (Gateway Theatre), Whitehorse (Pivot Festival), Ottawa (Magnetic North), Halifax (2b Theatre), Stratford (Stratford Festival), Montreal (Usine C and Segal Centre), Portland (TBA Festival), Seattle (On the Boards), Edinburgh (Edinburgh Fringe), Dublin (Abbey Theatre, Dublin Fringe), Brighton (SICK! Festival) and London, England (Battersea Arts Centre).
As a director, Anita has worked at The Shaw Festival, Electric Company Theatre, Bard on the Beach, Theatre Replacement, Belfry Theatre, Théâtre la Seizième, Globe Theatre and Vancouver Opera. She is a graduate of Studio 58 (Acting) and the National Theatre School of Canada (Directing). She is the recipient of the Ray Michal Prize for an Outstanding Body of Work by a New Director, a Mayor’s Arts Award (awarded by Donna Spencer) and the Siminovitch Protégé prize (awarded by Kim Collier).
Pathetic Fallacy examines our changing relationship to weather. It circles around climate change and lands on one person. Reflection outweighs didacticism, with wit and curiosity. Urgently drawing together landscape painting, small talk, meteorological science and pathetic fallacy — the attribution of human feelings and responses to inanimate things like the weather — this piece questions the value of emotion in the face of a coming storm.
Creator Anita Rochon set herself the challenge of creating a touring piece where no performer goes on tour. Each show a different local stand-in takes on the central role in a curious and hopeful show that draws a line between ancient weather gods and our present-day climate. The performer receives all their staging instructions live, standing in front of a temperamental broadcast media green screen. It’s an original collision of DIY cinematography, action film, choreography, a gallery talk and weather forecasting — all with the immediacy of live performance.
Pathetic Fallacy was the inaugural project of Theatre Replacement’s COLLIDER Residency program. The piece has been presented twice at PushOFF; as a development presentation in 2018 and a showcase in 2019. The project was test presented at foldA (festival of live digital Art) in Kingston, Ontario in June 2018 and had its world premiere in August 2018 at the Darwin Festival in Darwin, Australia. The piece has toured to the Spark Festival at the Belfry Theatre in Victoria (March 2019), OFFTA in Montréal (May 2019), foldA in Kingston (June 2019) Canada Hub at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival (July & August 2019).
Pathetic Fallacy was recently revamped for live-stream performance with the digital development support of Rumble Theatre in November, 2020 for a presentation at Progress Lab 1422. Touring of the digital, COVID-19 safe presentation of the work is now possible. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for current touring and presentation info.
Photos by Jordan Lloyd Watkins, Peter Pokorny and Sophia Wolfe