Photo by Kris Noteboom
Robert Wilson is a master of the silence. On Monday night as part of the Nasher Sculpture Center's Salon, he stood steps away from his director's chair staring into the audience before he repeated: "Theater 101, learn how to stand on stage."
The accidental theater artist crafted a career as a writer, director and designer in a way that few professionals find possible, but Wilson never bothered to imagine. After studying architecture at Pratt College, he dedicated his early career to developmental challenges in education and illness. Only after adopting a deaf child when he was just 27 did he find one of the first stories he wanted to tell on stage: Deafman Glance. In the latter half of the 20th century, he earned his reputation for directing and designing experimental theater and operas, including Phillip Glass' Einstein on the Beach.