In July, I participated in the 2012 Summer Residency at Berkeley Repertory Theatre’s conference and development lab, The Ground Floor.  I took part in the workshop of “The North China Lover” – an adaptation of the best-selling book by Margerite Duras, and in some respects an adaption of the 1992 film “The Lover”. The stage play is a work-in-progress by Heidi Stillman.

The semi-autobiographical story, set in 1930’s French Indochina, revolves around a 14 year-old girl in desperate circumstances who has an intense affair with a wealthy, Chinese aristocrat nearly twice her age.


About The Ground Floor – Berkeley Rep’s Center for the Creation and Development of New Work

Berkeley Rep created The Ground Floor program to foster the development of new material for theater ‘from the ground up’, in response to the ever-growing reliance of regional theater on the tried and true.  The Ground Floor actively seeks out works that are varied and at different stages in development, and seeks to provide resources to facilitate their growth, culminating in a summer residency lab.

“Our summer residency lab will bring artists to Berkeley to work on projects every June/July. Artists will be selected based on a combination of existing relationships with Berkeley Rep and an application process. Interaction with other artists, staff, board and, when appropriate, the public will be highly encouraged. There will be no final presentation required at the end of the lab. If a project is in a stage where a reading or an audience would be useful, then that will be arranged. But there is no expectation of any kind of public showing. The purpose is to identify where the project is in its development path, and to move it to the next stage, whatever that stage may be.”

For more information on The Ground Floor, visit Berkeley Rep’s website