Based on a Severpost article
“The idea of the trip comes from my wife Svetlana. She was born in Murmansk and lived there till 16. We met in Shanghai. We were thinking about what to do next, after we leave Shanghai. First we wanted to move someplace warm but then she came up with the idea of visiting a cold but inhabited place, thus the idea of going to Norilsk. The thought was to try ourselves what it is like to live in such extreme conditions, to speak with people and see how they live, and to write a play about it.”
But Svetlana had no one she knew in Norilsk but several acquaintances in Murmansk. “We’ve received unbelievable support in Murmansk.”
“The idea remained the same. We are going to live the whole of December in Murmansk and hold several interactive meetings with the locals in the New York Coffee to get to know more about the city, its history and its people.”
The American playwrite will also conduct workshops jointly with several of Murmansk theatres – the Arctic Theatre, Children’s Theatre Center, and Comediograph Theatre. He also invites people to attend his classes on scenic moves, scenic speech and other fundamentals of the art of theatre.
Jason Lasky has been to the Murmansk region before, and found northerners to be “warm and friendly”.
“I do not know for sure what the play will be about. So far I only have the title, “40 Days of Night”. I’m very interested in polar night, a phenomenon I’ve never encountered before. Our big goal is to have the play completed before the end of this year, and to share it with the Murmansk people. For New Year’s we’ll go to St. Petersburg, where we’ll continue working on the play that we’ll later take to the US and other countires.”