Animal Instincts

Animal Instincts

Ellen Welcker is launching her new poetry collection with collaborative “feral opera”

Local dancer Elise Divens choreographed her own interpretation of Spokane poet Ellen Welcker’s work for The Pink Tablet Project: A Performance. | Photo by Young Kwak

Ferociously untamed and femininely evocative, the fairytale-inspired voices of Spokane poet Ellen Welcker’s forthcoming collection The Pink Tablet are coming to life for an unusual collaborative performance.

A group of more than a dozen local artists are lending their talents to the staged production, a multimedia feast for the senses combining dance, song, spoken word, music and visual stage effects. Welcker calls the experimental mash-up a “feral opera.”

A “casual, visual circus” is another appropriate way to describe The Pink Tablet’s translation from page to stage, according to performance producer Rebecca Chadwell, an interdisciplinary artist who began helping Welcker after a brainstorming session over coffee several months ago.

Rather than a traditional poetry reading behind a mic, Welcker thought a live performance could better translate the collection’s theme, and would better align line with how she’s always heard the poems recited in her head. Thus, The Pink Tablet evolved into a collaboratively wild experience involving numerous other local creatives who are translating Welcker’s poetry into their chosen forms of expression.

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