The goal of Staging Wittgenstein is to dramatize philosophical thought conveyed in Ludwig Wittgenstein's Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus through the lens of his later idea of the "language game." Wittgenstein is wrangling with the connection between reality and language (or lack thereof), the irony being that he uses language to discuss language, thus limiting himself in using but this one form. This project acknowledges the various forms language can take, primarily through physicality. In Wittgenstein's Investigations, he suggests that it is through the establishment of rules that one constructs a language. It is then through the enactment of said rules that one speaks said language. In this way, the Tractatus can be played out as a linguistic game. The playfulness of structure extracted from the Tractatus dictates the theory of this performance, an attempt to create a system of visually dramatized representations of the linguistic propositions put forth in the Tractatus in order to ground that ungroundable text.
I.M. Lost! is a show based on interviews with clowns and the author-performer Nathalie Ellis-Einhorn's experiences with clown training. Clowns fail again and again, but despite all logic to the contrary, believe that things will be different the next time. Nathalie's clown, dubbed Little Snotty after her tendency to cry and even leak snot out of her red nose during exercises in clown class, is a BIG failure. But she doesn't know how to cultivate the clown's irrational hope. We follow her through encounters with birthday, hospital, and theater clowns who discuss failure and why they keep pouring all their work, pain, and love into something that's sort of dumb and useless.