Thought Residency: Adrienne Wong

Thought Residency: Adrienne Wong


Hello this is Adrienne Wong, Thought Resident for the Spiderwebshow December 2017 with three thoughts for the end of the year and this is number three.


You are the person who is listening to this right now. Maybe you’re my Mom, maybe you’re my sisters, maybe you’re my friends, maybe you don’t know me from a pile of potatoes.

You are so important to me. You are the reason that I make anything, that I get anything done. Because I think of the moment that you receive it. I think of the delight! I know these last three not been very delightful, but the delight! The delight! Of… surprise, of discovery.

So, for 2018, I dedicate it to you. Everything we make. It’s for you

Hello, this is Adrienne Wong, Thought Resident for the Spiderwebshow December 2017. I have three thoughts for the end of the year and it’s about darkness.

Um. Blech. I don’t like thinking about darkness. It’s enough to drive me towards my addictions: alcohol, social media, season 2 of The Crown.

So for the next year I want to embrace it. To wrap it around me like a cloak, like a badge of honour and know that while darkness doesn’t make me unique in any way, or special, um… that it does make like kind of interesting.

And I hope to teach my children that darkness is ok, and that it’s how we manage it. How we find the light.

Hi this is Adrienne Wong, Thought Resident for Spiderwebshow December 2017. These are three thoughts for the end of the year. One. Solitude. (Laughs)

Do we seek it out, or is it thrust upon us, like greatness? And is it like the seasons, turning and changing our perceptions of it?

In a way I think solitude is like water. That it feeds the growth inside, but too much of it can flood our selves away. So, right now I’m hiding in my basement (laughs) trying to complete my thoughts for a new year and wishing for solitude, but just the right amount.

See you tomorrow.

This is Adrienne Wong, Thought Resident for Spiderwebshow, December 2017.

I’m thinking– I don’t want to start them this way! (laughs) I’m thinking that I don’t want to start about what I’m thinking about. Because uh, of course I’m thinking about it! It’s a thought residency. Blah! Boring!

So I guess I’m thinking about being obvious and is being obvious always the… wrong thing to do? Is it sometimes helpful to be obvious? To just, like, put it out there so that everybody knows what it is that you’re thinking about and it’s not a surprise to anyone?


Maybe if we were all just a little more obvious um… things would run more smoothly. The problem is that my thoughts are not always even obvious to me. So here I was trying to think about remembering and then I think about being obvious and… that seems to be the way the brain works: are these non-linear tracks.

Good morning, this is Adrienne Wong thought resident for the Spiderwebshow, December 2017.

Let’s talk about agreement and conflict. Um… Is agreement necessary to making art–with collaborators?

I guess, ultimately, you do have to agree on what’s going to happen in the space of time that you call the performance. Or do you? Um. What does it mean if a piece has a part in it that you don’t want to have be there? Is that ok? Uh… And how does the piece hold that disagree with – among the collaborators?

I don’t– gosh I don’t really have an answer to that. That’s just a, like, living question. Um.

I think it could be pretty interesting to have discord, because conflict is drama. Right?

Hello, this is Adrienne Wong. Thought Resident for the Spiderwebshow, December 2017.

I am… forgetting things lately. Uh. Maybe it’s not so much lately, but I certainly have noticed it more. Um. So… here I have forgotten to do this thought and I’m… thinking about why I forgot. Because isn’t it said that we remember the things that are important to us. So maybe this… thinking isn’t important to me? Or maybe in the list of priorities it comes in after… making lunches, shoveling the sidewalk, getting the kids to the places that they need to do, and showing up for my collaborator on a workshop day. Maybe that’s enough to remember.

Hello, this is Adrienne Wong, Thought Resident for Spiderwebshow – December 2017.

I’m trying to get better. I’m trying to work harder, to be more efficient—to work smarter, not harder—and get better at what I do and that’s really hard because I can’t always explain to other people (nevermind myself) what it is exactly that I do. So how does one get better at something kinda unnameable.

Of course, of course, of course the answer is that I make these things, that I make these shows. But what I am really trying to do, I think, is, uh, peel away a layer, or be vulnerable, um, or kind of just present create these opportunities for people to be present with each other. And in order to get better doing that, I guess I have to get better at being present. Which seems a bit like a paradox.

Oup! I’m over time. Talk to you next week.

Hello, this is Adrienne Wong, Thought Resident for Spiderwebshow, December 2017 with Thought Number 5.

Right now I’m thinking about deadlines. I’m late submitting this thought aaand it seems like I am late with pretty much everything these days: late getting to meetings, making supper, getting to bed, etcetera, etcetera…

Uhh… And yet at the same time I have to admit deadlines are pretty important to me. To help me get things done. Um. Some people talk about how they can’t write if they feel like there’s a deadline looming, whereas I’m the exact opposite: unless I have a deadline looming I can’t really seem to get anything done.

Because I need to know that someone, somewhere is going to read the thing or see it. Um. Otherwise why say it?

That’s Thought Number 5. I’ll talk to you tomorrow.

Hello this is Adrienne Wong, Spiderwebshow Thought Resident December 2017. This is Thought #4.

Right now, I’m thinking about community. Uhh… And how hard it is to make stuff if you don’t…  have it! Um. (laugh)

Who are you making this thing for? Who’s gonna watch it? Who’s gonna want to see it? Who’s gonna listen? But moreover who’s going to be the one to… help you… think. Uh…

I truly believe that we are not just individual people. That our brains actually are networked through other brains and they function better when we’re connected to other people, and through this larger process of collective thinking come to moments of epiphany or inspiration or whatever you want to call them.

So… I’m thinking about how important my community is to me.

I think that’s about a minute (click) so uh… oh! I’ll see you tomorrow. Bye!

Hello this is Adrienne Wong, Thought Resident for Spiderwebshow, December 2017.

Let’s talk about gifts because after all, tis the season.

I remember, when I was a kid, my Mom teaching me how to choose a gift for another person. She taught me to think about what the person might like and then to find that thing. And so even though I don’t really like all the buying and spending and spending and buying and consuming that comes along with the holiday season, there is something to the practice of considering what might give another person joy and then giving them that.

This, too, is an art form

Ok, that’s enough. See you next week.

Hi, it’s me, Adrienne Wong, Spiderwebshow Thought Resident, December 2017 with my second thought.

It’s 8:30pm and I’m finally sitting still. After a long day. And it makes me wonder: do you take a break every day?

I don’t.

And… that makes me wonder: do I even know how to relax anymore? Do I even know what I like to do to relax? Everything I can think of… that I like to do… has to do with work: cooking, reading, watching certain shows, reading certain books.So I guess I’d have to say that the thing I like to do to relax… is nothing. That’s not so bad.

Hello this is Adrienne Wong. I am the SpiderWebShow thought resident for December 2017.

I’m in my car right now. I’ve just picked up a wood rasp from my friend. I’m borrowing it so that my father-in-common-law (who’s visiting right now) can help us with our drawers in the kitchen. Make them less sticky.

I’ve traded two cans of Coke Zero and two slices of black forest cape–cake, although I don’t expect to get those things back.

It makes me think how the barter economy is pretty swell. Uhh. Especially for things that you don’t need for very long. Things you might need for a theatre show, for example. So I wonder how that barter economy can work in our favour as theatre makers.

In kind donations are one thing but is there some kind of Bunz Trading Zone for theatre? That’s it for now. I’ll have another thought tomorrow. I hope.



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About the Author

With firm footing in performing arts practice and community building, I'm curious and passionate about change, systems, and participation. I'm a producer and an artist. I value collaboration, efficiency, and resourcefulness. Currently Artistic Director of Kingston-based SpiderWebShow Performance, which includes co-curating and producing the Festival of Live Digital Art (FOLDA). During eight years as Artistic Producer of Neworld Theatre, I collaborated with colleagues to found PL 1422, a shared rehearsal and administration hub in East Vancouver, as well as shepherding the creation and production of over 80 live events – including a series of 11 "podplays" audio plays before podplays were cool. In 2015, I was the inaugural artist in residence on CBC Radio’s q based on my digital project The Apology Generator. My formal training is in arts creation and producing, and I have practical experience managing production projects, festivals, and special events. I'm functionally bilingual in English and French. I'm a parent, a gardener, a cook and have recently started running.