THEY WHO SAW THE DEEP (TWSTD) is a loose adaptation of the world’s oldest great work of literature: The Epic of Gilgamesh. While the epic poem tells the story of one man’s search for companionship, knowledge, and immortality, TWSTD reimagines the world of this poem as one in which everyone is their own Gilgamesh at the center of their own epic. The production employs elements of literary collage, immersive theater, physical theater, and song to interrogate the individual’s relationship to community, mortality, and legacy.
The version of Gilgamesh we read today has been assembled, retold, deconstructed and processed through multiple languages, over thousands of years, by many poets, and in various historical contexts. TWSTD leans into the pluralistic and fractal features of the epic. It processes an already processed text again, pluralizing the protagonist and asking the audience to consider multiple perspectives and multiple answers to the questions we all ask ourselves.
If everyone is their own Gilgamesh at the center of their own story, how can we build community? How can we conceive of our own mortality? How can we archive our own stories? How can we see the deep?