Thirsting for Salt

Thank you

Thank you to all the friends and family who let us borrow their incredible stories for this piece:

Jamie Asdorian, Alina Bokovikova, Julie Burelle, Melanie Cordan, Robin Atkin Downes, Josephine Gluzman, Lisel Gorell-Getz, Judith & Bill Holt, Astrid Hansen, Mahvash Hayatshahi, Michael Hofacre, Laura Lee Juliano-Henson, Vanessa Waters Kassir, Kedar Kulkarni, Tracy Landry, Regan Linton, Wendy Maples, Donald McClure, Miguel Morales, Walter Murray, Azfar Najmi, Bolaji Nafiu, Jila Nafiu, Susan Zaribaf Osorio, Michelle Rees, Daphne Rozenblatt and David Tierney

A Special Thank you to Teena Lange and Grüntaler9 for the amazing venue.

Dearly beloved,

We gather to mourn, to celebrate, to eat together, to laugh, and to remember.

Wednesday July 20th and Thursday July 21st

Grüntaler9 , Berlin, Germany

dinner performance one from 5-7:00pm
dinner performance two from 7-9:00pm
(dinners by registration only – see below)

5pm – midnight
durational halva making performance by Janet Hayatshahi

9pm – midnight
all are welcome for home kitchen video projections, drinks & halva

Thirsting for Salt combines a durational performance with an intimate performance dinner for six invited guests. The backbone of the evening is a durational performance by Iranian-American artist Janet Hayatshahi, related to the halva making by Persian women for many hours after a family member dies.

Dinner performance for six: each guest, seated around a dinner table, watches a video with headphones on a handheld device, one-to-one. The videos are filmed in home kitchens worldwide, showing people cooking a dish they associate with a deceased family member. These very six dishes from the videos are served live during the performance. Thirsting for Salt aims to face the complex relationships between food, grief, distance, and family.

We invite all to witness the durational halva making performance on July 20th and July 21st from 9pm – midnight.

To participate in the dinner performances, please email to latest by July 15th. Please give your availability for the following seatings and we will hopefully confirm your place as soon as possible: July 20th, 5-7pm, 7-9pm; July 21st, 5-7pm, 7-9pm. Each dinner is limited to 6 participants and by donation.

The Team

Janet Hayatshahi

Janet Hayatshahi is an actor and director currently based in Richmond, Virginia, where she is an Assistant Professor of Theatre Arts at Randolph-Macon College. An award-winning director, Janet was Associate Artistic Director and ensemble member of the notorious Sledgehammer Theatre of San Diego and an ensemble member of the acclaimed Eclipse Theatre in Chicago.

She holds an MFA in Dance Theatre from the University of California, San Diego, an MA in Theatre from San Diego State University, a BFA in Acting from Ithaca College, and a certificate from the Pacific Conservatory of the Performing Arts.

Janet’s theatrical interests lie in ensemble-driven, collaboratively-created works, blending a physical approach and embodied practice with text and story-telling, particularly with new works or re-inventions of classic tales.

For a list of theatrical credits, please visit her website.

Lily Kelting

Lily Kelting is a dramaturg and scholar living and working in Berlin, Germany. Her credits as dramaturg include Groundswell (Old Globe), Drums in the Night (UCSD-La Jolla Playhouse), A Man, His Wife, and His Hat (current title: The Hatmaker’s Wife, Moxie Theater). She is a postdoctoral fellow at the Freie Universität, Berlin, working on an academic project about food and performance in Germany and the Nordic region. She also works as a theatre critic and stage editor for the English-language magazine Exberliner and reports on arts and culture for NPR Berlin. Her academic work has been published in journals from Food, Culture, and Society  to TheatreForum. She is originally from New York, NY, with a Ph.D. in Theatre from University of California, San Diego.

Kirsten Brandt

Kirsten Brandt is an award winning playwright, director and producer. She served for six seasons as Artistic Director of Sledgehammer Theatre where she directed over a dozen plays and wrote Berzerkergang, The Frankenstein Project  and Nu.  She was the Associate Artistic Director of San Jose Repertory Theatre, where she directed Dr. Faustus, Next Fall  and Groundswell, among others.  As a director, Ms. Brandt work has been seen at San Jose Repertory Theatre, The Old Globe, TheatreWorks, La Jolla Playhouse, San Diego Repertory, Marin Theater, Santa Cruz Shakespeare, North Coast Repertory, and Arizona Theatre Company. She is the co-adapter of Henrik Ibsen’s   A Doll’s House, which had its world premiere at the Old Globe Theatre. Her telematic, multi-site play  The Thinning Veil  was produced at the University of California, Santa Cruz where  she is a continuing lecturer.