the day shall declare it
Sophia Bortolussi Works
Wilderness works internationally to push the envelope of the traditional performance experience. Inspired by undiscovered spaces, the company creates mind-bending, dreamlike experiences to engage an activated audience and disrupt the boundaries between observer and observed. Using cinematically detailed design and a harmony of language and visceral choreography, Wilderness experiences are corporeal, impactive, surreal, and totally one-of-a-kind.
“It takes you to a world both within and far beyond your own. It’s haunting, magical and beautifully crafted - something that must be experienced to be experienced.” LA Weekly
Wilderness has presented its widely acclaimed site-responsive, immersive physical theatre performance The Day Shall Declare It in London at the former BBC Studios and the Bush Theatre, and Los Angeles in the Downtown Arts District with Los Angeles Performance Practice. The company has presented Leaves of Grass, a work-in-progress currently in development about the look-alike phenomenon in couples and the biology of identity in the REDCAT Studio Series and is currently developing new work with the San Francisco Playhouse and the Getty Villa. The company has also taught masterclasses in devising with text and movement in Moscow for Territoria Festival alongside Declan Donnellan, Dimitris Papaioannou, Kirill Serebrennikov, Lev Dodin, Lars Øyno and more.
Sophie Bortolussi (Core Collaborator) is a French choreographer, dancer and director based between New York City and London. She is a frequent collaborator with Wilderness and the co-director and choreographer of The Day Shall Declare It. She is currently directing “Six 0 Three”, a solo show written and performed by Jon David Casey and designed by Christopher Akerlind. She recently movement directed and choreographed “Red Eye to Havre De Grace”, a production from Lucidity Suitcase Intercontinental at New York Theater Workshop in NYC, and was Martha Clarke's choreography assistant for “The Threepenny Opera” at the Atlantic Theater in NYC. She is also the artistic associate of New York-based dance theater company Nu Dance Theater and was co-director of “Dorian C.” a dance film illustrating through exhilarating choreography the frustrating struggle between the boundaries of how we are defined and our manufactured identity. Sophie played the lead role of Wendy in Punchdrunk's "The Drowned Man: A Hollywood Fable" at the National Theatre in London. Her performance was nominated for the 2013 UK Broadway World Award with Helen Mirren, Kristin Scott Thomas and Natalie Chancellor. She played the role of Lady Macbeth in Punchdrunk's production "Sleep No More" for which she was awarded the 2011 World Falstaff Award for "Best Principal Performance". She has worked on multiple projects with Martha Clarke, including "The Threepenny Opera", "Garden of Earthly Delights", "Kaos", "Angel Reapers" and was a member of the Martha Graham Dance Company, Drastic Action and AMDaT. Sophie trained at the Martha Graham Dance School of Contemporary Dance and has a degree in Philosophy from Paris 8 University in France. Sophie recently became a guest faculty member at Royal Central School of Speech and Drama as a movement tutor. She is currently finishing her Somatic Movement Education in Body-Mind Centering ® at the Kinesthetic Learning Center in Durham, NC.
Annie Saunders (Artistic Director) is a director, performer and the founder of Wilderness, and is based in London and Los Angeles. She conceived The Day Shall Declare It, in which she co-directs and performs. She is also a core creative performer and collaborator with Lars Jan's Early Morning Opera, and appears in Holoscenes, a public performance installation in a large free-standing aquarium which examines long term empathy and climate change, Abacus, which looks at authority and persuasion in the internet age, and The Institute of Memory (TIMe), a a multimedia performance about how the future of remembering is changing right now. She has devised and performed original work in the UK with Neil Bettles (Frantic Assembly, Thickskin) and Gemma Fairlie (RSC) on Full Stop, a co-commission for the Lyric Theatre, Watford Palace, Greenwich Festival and Latitude. She has worked as a director in London at the Charing Cross Theatre, the Cafe de Paris, Queen Mary University and the Etcetera Theatre, and in Los Angeles at the Lyric Hyperion Theatre, Boston Court Theatre, Son of Semele and Theatricum Botanicum. She has also worked for over ten years as a creative activist with Eve Ensler's V-Day, a global creative movement to end violence against women through creative activism. In London she co-founded See You Next Tuesday, a cutting-edge festival of performance events and utopian art playground for female and feminist artists. She holds a BA and MA in English literature from the University of London, and trained at the Sanford Meisner Center for the Arts, the American Conservatory Theater and the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art.