About the Show
ENDURE: A Run Woman Show is a theatre show that doesn’t take place in a theatre. Audience members follow a single performer through 5K of urban streets, public parkland, and off road trails. It is, quite literally, a walk in the park- though audience members have opportunities to run, if they choose.
What they experience is a performance that is, according to the Calgary Herald, “as beautiful as the unconventional setting it unfolds in.”
Audiences are loaned custom ENDURE mp3 players through which they hear a monologue set to music. Everyone is listening to the same audio at the same time, and the soundtrack serves as an intimate audio backdrop to the live performance they’re pursuing and encountering in front of them.
The show is about the marathon, a grueling footrace that is 42.2K (26.2 miles) in length. More specifically, the show is about one woman’s first marathon race and the personal events in her life that compelled her to train for and run it. The show is about much more than just running and asks audiences to break the bounds of the theatre and encounter the world through the mind of a marathon runner.
Creators and Performance History
ENDURE was conceived and written by Melanie Jones, a Calgary native currently living in Brooklyn, New York. Jones, who also performs the show, began writing about her experiences as an endurance athlete while training for her first Ironman triathlon (a swim/bike/run event that concludes with a full marathon race). That writing is what ultimately evolved into the ENDURE that audiences see today.
The show’s original soundtrack was composed by Christine Owman, a composer, producer and multi-instrumentalist from Sweden. ENDURE is directed by Suchan Vodoor, a director, designer and producer from New York.
ENDURE was originally presented by Collision Productions and Piper Theatre Productions at the Old Stone House of Brooklyn, directed by Michael Buffer. It enjoyed a sold-out United States premiere in New York in Summer 2011, followed by a sold-out Canadian tour later that season. Then it returned to New York for a seven-week run during the weeks leading up to the 2011 New York City Marathon. ENDURE toured the United Kingdom during Summer 2012, kicking off with a week in London during the Olympic Games and then moving to Edinburgh’s Festival Fringe for a two week run.
ENDURE returned home to Calgary May 23 - June 2, 2013 generously sponsored by the 49th Scotiabank Calgary Marathon and East Village Calgary.
Following this summer’s tour ENDURE will undergo a major expansion, in which several new characters – with new, overlapping storylines – will be introduced to audiences, bringing new dimension and resonance to the show’s core theme of the marathon as metaphor for life.
You can also listen to a short audio excerpt of the show.