Target of God explores human existence and struggle

If you love what you do, an obstacle is just another step in the staircase. Jacques Poulin- Denis is living proof, as he prepares for his fourth New Brunswick performance of Target of God at the Playhouse this Friday– with a prosthetic foot.

The act ties together music, dance and theatre as it explores human existence from an intimate and personal perspective.

Target of God is a very humanistic piece, there’s something really clear about the questions I’m asking [like,] what it means to exist and what it means to go through hard times in life and good times in life.”

In 1999, Poulin-Denis was in a car accident, resulting in the loss of his right food. At the time he was just finishing up at one dance school and was on his way to another. What could have been a devastating accident is just another one of the life events Poulin-Denis takes in stride. Target of God is a perfect example; it takes the audience on a personal journey while sticking to what its creator describes as its “theatrical true line.”

(Submitted)
(Submitted)

“It questions our existence on a very personal level, for me to be here going through these tough times and these laughs – why is it fun one day and horrible the next? In a way it relates to fate, our destiny and this guy on stage has a bit of an existential crisis and the timing is good or bad enough for him that it’s open to everybody.”

Poulin-Denis created Target of God in 2009, and has been performing it every year since. Even after six years, he still finds himself tweaking certain scenes or removing them all together with each performance. The first three years he performed Target of God were the most exhausting but Poulin-Denis says he’s pretty much mastered it and can have a lot more fun with the piece nowadays.

“The way I compose pieces I ask myself what would be the best way to elaborate certain ideas and sometimes a more theatrical idea – sometimes its more abstract and dance is better – it depends on what I’m working on.” In the performance world, “all cards are up for grabs in a way.”

Target of God is showing at 7:30 p.m., March 20, in the Playhouse’s smaller more intimate back studio, perfect for drawing the audience into the play’s essence and Poulin- Denis’s manifestation of his life’s journeys.

“There’s certainly a desire to connect with the audience in this piece, there’s a real exchange. I’m super excited.”

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