Nina Milanovski

In the dictionary, to uncouple is defined as:

  1. To disconnect or unfasten
  2. To set loose
  3. To break loose

I became interested in the concept of uncoupling through points of inspiration both near and far. First, my own personal experiences with uncoupling and how I found it impossible that someone you knew so completely could soon become a stranger. Second, through a fascination with F. Scott Fitzgerald and the relationships in his novels and how closely they mimicked his tumultuous marriage with Zelda Fitzgerald. I sat down with the interpreters and collaborators Victoria Gubiani and Paige Sayles to discuss the piece, its process and how it has mirrored their own experiences.

“When you built this love up with someone and the relationship ends, all I can think is what was that all for. You learn something from it but you never go into a relationship thinking I can’t wait to get hurt and learn some values and build character. You never think about the end.” VG

“In relationships I think a lot is lost in the middle. You remember everything from the beginning, I remember where we first met, I remember what they looked like, how we felt, I remember the first kiss. You always remember the end too. But a lot is lost in the middle.” PS

“They were still in the happier stages of love. They were full of brave illusions, so that the communion of self with self seemed to be on a plane where no other human relations mattered.” F. Scott Fitzgerald, Tender is the Night



“In the piece, there are familiar moments for me where I feel like I am such a weight on Paige. Those moments remind me of times when in my relationships I have been at fault. And I have come to recognize that.” VG

“In retrospect, I have been that person to carry someone along. I felt like I was always a foundation for them and that is still something I battle with. Sometimes I carry too much of the weight and I don’t allow that person to go out on their own.” PS



“Neither of us are walking out forever, we always come back to each other. Even when we are facing away from each other we are always turning each other around.” VG

“I think we both care very deeply for each other. We also can’t make it work because we’re too different. We are a two pieces of a puzzle that don’t fit but we are trying to make it work.” PS



“I hate my character within this work, but I think that’s because I once was that person. It’s a very honest version of something I have experienced before and I am happy that I can dance the piece in this way.” VG

“It has always been an emotionally heavy piece for myself and in the end I’m very grateful that we separate. I can say that the relationship we have in the piece isn’t healthy and I think when we leave the relationship we can learn from it.” PS

“But  Zelda, what wouldn’t you give to go back to the beginning, to be those people again, the future so fresh and promising that it seems impossible not to get it right” Therese Anne Fowler, Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald


Photos by: Connie Oreamuno (Victoria Gubiani & Paige Sayles in Nina Milanovski’s uncoupling)