Somniterum takes its name from Shakespeare’s The Tempest:“Be not afeard; the isle is full of noises,
Sounds and sweet airs, that give delight and hurt not.
Sometimes a thousand twangling instruments
Will hum about mine ears, and sometime voices
That, if I then had waked after long sleep,
Will make me sleep again: and then, in dreaming,
The clouds methought would open and show riches
Ready to drop upon me that, when I waked,
I cried to dream again.”
(Caliban in act 3, scene 2)
“Somniterum” is a Latin translation of the final phrase, “dream again”: somni (dream) + iterum (again). Unlike the original, we use the imperative, which makes it a command, request, or challenge.
Our name expresses our mission as a company. We endeavor to follow Caliban’s admonition and “be not afeard”, to set aside our reservations and attempt what doesn’t seem entirely possible. We endeavor to dream again and open ourselves up to the sounds, sweet airs, voices, and riches present within us.
The cornerstones of our activities are community and artistry. Community made the founding of Somniterum possible, and we seek to further establish community through our work. Artistry is the means by which we explore the human condition together, and we aspire to audacious and rigorous artistry that makes our exploration as comprehensive and fulfilling as possible.
Hannah Preisinger (Founder, Executive Director)
Hannah directed the first Shakespeare in Ten in 2015, and founded Somniterum with Karl Divoky in 2016 to prepare for the second installment. She graduated from the University of Washington Bothell with a BA in Culture, Literature & the Arts and a minor in Consciousness Studies. Her theatrical interests include directing, acting, and writing, and she is also involved with scientific research in gravitational wave astronomy. She is an avid investigator of all things strange and unexplained and tends to drink lots of coffee.
Karl Divoky (Founder, Executive Director)
Karl assisted with aspects of the first Shakespeare in Ten, and founded Somniterum with Hannah Preisinger the following year. Originally an actor, his practice includes directing, education, and stage combat choreography. He is currently completing an MFA in Actor Training and Coaching from the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, University of London. A follower of the tradition of theatre laboratories, his recent practical research has centered on new approaches to acting and to working with dramatic texts.