Calendar of Events

2014 Creativity Seminar

Austen Riggs Center

25 Main St
StockbridgeMassachusetts 01262
August 1, 2014 at 7:00 PM to August 2, 2014 at 4:30 PM

Translation in the Theater, in the Concert Hall, the Studio, and the Consulting Room

Seminar Director:  Ellen Handler Spitz, PhD


Patients and therapists are constantly engaged in the practice of translation.  Translation is a creative act involving the intersection of objective practice and subjective meaning.  In the "talking cure," desires, thoughts, fantasies, symptoms, and dreams are gradually metamorphosed (in part) into words and sentences, which render them meaningful in an intersubjective context and make them more accessible to conscious control.  Similarly, we can see that composers, artists, actors, conductors, and translators of literature from one language to another engage the same way.   How does translation work?  What is it in a translation that gets carried over, and what gets left behind?  How can we understand more about the elements that spill over outside the bounds of what is conscious and controlled and affect it?

In our conference this year we will learn about the process of translation in different areas of creative endeavor in the visual medium of photography, through the embodied work of translation by an orchestral conductor, via the interpretative work of translation by a psychoanalyst, and by means of the multilayered acts of translation in theater.  Our aim is to understand more deeply the subjective and objective nature of interpretation and translation and to stimulate our use of these ideas in our various clinical, educational, and other settings.


Landis Smith (Artistic Director, Production Enchantment Theatre Company) studied theater with Jewel Walker at Carnegie-Mellon University and with Jacobina Caro at Webster University Conservatory in St. Louis. He began performing magic at the age of six and studied violin and voice beginning at the age of nine. His love of theater, music, and the art of illusion led to the founding of Enchantment Theatre Company in 1979. As a founder and performer with Enchantment, Landis has created, produced, and performed in productions in America and in the Far East. In 1985, Landis and Enchantment collaborated with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra to premiere The Symphony and the Sorcerer, the first of a series of programs introducing young people to the magic of symphonic music. Since then, Landis has appeared with major orchestras nationwide, including the premiere of Enchantment’s theatrical adaptation of Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade with The Cleveland Orchestra in 2008. Landis appeared with the Boston Pops on their annual holiday PBS television special, which aired for five years.

Jennifer Blatchley Smith (Artistic Director, Literary & Education Enchantment Theater Company) studied writing and theater at Bennington College. For the last 30 years, she has co-created and performed in over 20 original productions presented around the United States and abroad. As a founding member of Enchantment Theatre Company, Jennifer created roles as diverse as the Broom in The Sorcerer’s Apprentice and Beauty in Beauty and the Beast. She performed in Enchantment productions at Lincoln Center and the Brooklyn Academy of Music in New York; the John F. Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.; and the Annenberg Center, the Kimmel Center, and the Academy of Music in Philadelphia.


Linda Mayes, M.D. is the Arnold Gesell Professor of Child Psychiatry, Pediatrics, and Psychology in the Yale Child Study Center and Distinguished Visiting Professor at Sewanee, The University of the South. She is also a child and adult psychoanalyst and member of the faculty of the Western New England Psychoanalytic Institute where she completed her psychoanalytic training. Her scholarly work focuses on the impact of early life adversity and chronic stress on child and adult social development.



Ellen Handler Spitz, Ph.D. is the author of six books, each of which brings psychological perspectives to bear on the arts and on children's aesthetic lives.  She is a regular contributor to The New Republic and to Artcritical.  A Fellow of the New York Institute for the Humanities, she was trained as a special research candidate at the Columbia University Center for Psychoanalytic Training and Research.  Dr. Spitz has held fellowships at the Clark Art Institute, the Getty, the Center for Advanced Study at Stanford, and at the Radcliffe (Bunting) Institute, among others.  She is a former Erikson Scholar who currently holds the Honors College Professorship of Visual Arts at the University of Maryland (UMBC), where she has been teaching since 2001.


Sara Jobin is the Music Director of the Center for Contemporary Opera in New York. In 2004 she made history as the first woman to conduct at San Francisco Opera, returning to their podium for seventeen performances of five productions since then.  Her first opera recording, the hilariously funny Volpone by John Musto, was nominated for a 2010 Grammy. Ms Jobin went to Harvard, has a black belt in judo, and is attempting to get off oil in her daily life.  She started an opera repertoire project where the women don't just die victims:, and she is looking for more opportunities to conduct sacred music.


Pradip Malde is a photographer and teaches at the University of the South, Sewanee, TN. Much of his work considers the experience of loss and how it serves as a catalyst for regeneration. He is currently working in rural communities in Haiti and Tennessee, designing models for community development through photography. Works are held in the collections of Museum of the Art Institute, Chicago; Princeton University Museum; Victoria & Albert Museum, London and the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh, among others.



Phillip Blumberg, Ph.D. is a graduate and faculty member of the William Alanson White Psychoanalytic Institute. He is on the faculty of the doctoral program in Clinical Psychology at Columbia University, and a member of the executive committee of the Helix Center at the New York Psychoanalytic Institute. He is book review editor for the journal Contemporary Psychoanalysis.




Seminar Schedule


7:00 – 8:30pm Theatrical Presentation
Jennifer and Landis Smith
The Enchantment Theater


9:00am – 9:30am Registration and Breakfast

9:30am – 9:45am Seminar Welcome and Opening Conference Co-Directors
Jane Tillman, Ph.D. Director of the Erikson Institute
Ellen Handler Spitz, Ph.D. 

9:45am – 10:45am Pradip Malde
Presentation and Discussion

10:45am – 11:15am Break

11:15am – 12:00 noon Phillip Blumberg, Ph.D.
Presentation and Discussion

12:00noon – 1:00 Lunch

1:00pm – 1:45pm Sara Jobin
Presentation and Discussion

1:45pm – 2:45pm Jennifer and Landis Smith
Presentation and Discussion

2:45pm – 3:15pm Break

3:15pm – 4:00pm Small Group Discussions led by speakers

4:00pm– 4:30pm Wrap-up Plenary Session

Learning Objectives:

  1. To explore the role of interpretation in the process of translation
  2. To identify creative approaches to translation
  3. To explore the intersection of subjective, objective, and the intersubjective elements of creative endeavors in translation.


Price early $80.00 till july 5
After $100.00


Event Options

  • Early registration rate until July 5 (Cost: $80)
  • Regular rate - After July 5th (Cost: $100)

Total Cost: $0.00