Dan Hurlin2004

Writer, director, choreographer, actor, designer, puppet/object maker and puppeteer Dan Hurlin wants to put things into the world that weren't there before. Whether he's investigating the birth of the Dionne Quintuplets, the 1859 unveiling of Frederic Edwin Church's painting The Heart of the Andes, or New York City's first recorded murder (in the 19th century), or his own gay boyhood in New Hampshire, Hurlin mines historical content as metaphor for personal experience. In both the solo and group work, he scrutinizes the different ways we see (or don't see) the world. Hiroshima Maiden, an evening-length piece is as much about looking and being looked at as it is about the young women, disfigured by the nuclear blast in 1945, who came to visit to New York. Co-mingling urban and rural sensibilities and drawing on post-war Americana, Hurlin fashions intimate, intensely visual theatre (even when he's playing sixty characters himself). Film informs his puppetry with shifts in point of view, jump cuts and cross fades; objects are archetypal distillations; movement and gesture are his sine qua non.
"My process usually starts with finding a scrap from the pages of history. While researching the subject I ask myself a series of questions: Why do I have to tell this story? Why not someone else? Where am I in this story? How could this be my autobiography? I am interested in the relationship of the solitary individual to the larger social and geopolitical sphere. What I'm looking for is a doorway into all this history we've accumulated."