Crossing an Impossible Threshold

Creating a Transdisciplinary Process in the Heart of the Pandemic


  • Nicole Schafenacker Brock University (currently); University of Alberta alumni
  • Leda Davies



Interdisciplinary, Transdisciplinary, Pandemic, Eco-theatre, Liminality, Theatre, Circus, Devised creation, Physicality, Performance, New collaboratives, Affect, Grief, Loss, Death, Self, Isolation, New mediums, Approaches


In this article we, both playwright and performer, look at the play Fish at the Bottom of the Sea and its unique exploratory process. We articulate an exchange between circus, sound, and theatre, and examine the larger understanding evoked by an experiential point of view rather than one attached to the identity of any particular discipline. The article alternates between our two voices and includes videos and excerpts from the play to capture the inter- and transdisciplinary nature of our project. Our co-writing approach mirrors our collaborative and interdisciplinary process. As this iteration of the play was generated during the pandemic, the article explores how the play’s themes of isolation and loss are reflected in our collective experience and our need for connection. Further, we explore how both the form and content of this work was impacted by the pandemic. Our paper is organized around three central themes: exploring liminal space and the desire to cross an impossible threshold; embodying states of matter and moving through stages of grief; seeking virtuosity in performance.




How to Cite

Schafenacker, Nicole, and Leda Davies. 2023. “Crossing an Impossible Threshold: Creating a Transdisciplinary Process in the Heart of the Pandemic”. Intonations 2 (1):45-66.



Interdisciplinary Studies