Leap - A Traveler in the Gardens of Delight

Institute History

  • 1999 Theatre Lab


Writer-in-residence Terry Tempest Williams

This project will be an exploration in the possibilities of adapting my book, LEAP – A TRAVELER IN THE GARDEN OF DELIGHTS to theatre. It is the story of a seven year obsession with Hieronymus Bosch’s medieval triptych, El Jardin de las Delicias. The painting hangs in the Prado Museum in Spain.

The structure of the book is divided into four parts: Paradise; Hell; Garden of Delights; and Restoration. It is a spiritual autobiography that asks the question how might we create a living theology.

LEAP has a split narrative that involves a first person narrator and “the traveler.” I want to explore how this text might translate into a dramatic monologue or if the story would be better served through a more formal structure that includes characters and dialogue. I am also interested in playing with the idea of moving in and out of the painting, animating Bosch’s tableaus within the various panels.

As a writer who is learning the language of theatre, I am very open to the discovery process, realizing how much I have to learn and absorb at the Sundance Lab. I will be drawing on the expertise and generosity of those at the Lab who are part of the theatre community. This kind of artistic exchange and collaboration will no doubt shape the direction of LEAP.
—Terry Tempest Williams


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