Cynthia Allan believes that some of life’s most important and most poignant moments occur while we are engaged in mundane tasks. That’s the premise that drives “The History of Laundry,” an original work conceived and directed by Allan and staged by PSU’s Advanced Performance Ensemble in April.
Allan, who is chair of the Department of Communication, said the idea for “The History of Laundry,” came to her many years ago when a friend made an off-hand remark about her “history of laundry.” Allan began thinking about the number of times laundry is referred to in our daily expressions.
“We talk about sorting things out, ironing out our problems, airing our grievances, and we admonish people not to air their dirty laundry. Really, I started thinking that laundry was a great metaphor for all our interactions,” Allan said.
The play is constructed as an improvisational work.
“In my productions, even though the actors know the basic structure of every scene, everything they say happens in the moment,” Allan said.