Sunday, August 10, 2008

I know a country, wild canyons and seas, red roots wave in the fissures so wild the space between my love and me

Five things:

1. Trash Anthems: postponed. Sad for me, but happy for the director, who has an upcoming Broadway gig he's going to focus on. I think I'm still going to manage to make it to Ft. Worth in October anyway, just for a day, so hopefully I'll still get to the museums.

1.5 Mary Todd: also postponed. The energy, creative team and resources that were going into this are now being funneled into Ophelia.

2. Ophelia: I'm designing this for Tutto Theatre Company, directed by Dustin Wills, to be produced in November. It's going to be gorgeous. Lisa Laratta, a colleague and friend of mine from grad school, is designing the set and I honestly am so excited to see what she comes up with. The entire stage is going to be a huge palette for me to paint on. And I think this marks the first time I'm honestly excited at the thought of lighting a white set.

3. The Eurydice Variations: This is a long term project I've been tossing around for awhile now. I want to experiment with using Second Life / virtual worlds in live performance - not as something pre-recorded but as something that is being streamed live, so that the performance happens in two different worlds simultaneously, and the performers can interact across that divide. I met with Dr. Leslie Jarmon this past week and her enthusiasm for virtual worlds and what artists can do with them is infectious. I'm starting to assemble collaborators for this and the title is VERY tentative (up until now it's just been sort of code named "Ypsilanti," but I am really drawn to the idea of telling the Orpheus and Eurydice myth in this way). With Trash Anthems being postponed I now have a big hole in my schedule for the fall, so my intention is to really push forward with this idea now. I think we're probably about a year out from actually producing and performing this, but that gives us plenty of time to really get it right, and figure out what the hell we're doing anyway. During our meeting Leslie pointed out that no one really knows how to use this technology, and it's something that sort of evolves as artists try to use it. I imagine that as I get into SL more and more, I'll see what I can and can't do with it and most likely the end result will look absolutely nothing like what I described just now

4. The opening ceremonies in Beijing were STUNNING. I can't find photos that really do it justice, but one of my favorite parts involved about 5000+ drummers playing on drums that lit up from the inside as they were struck.

Later in the ceremony Peter Gabriel wanted his ideas back:

I remember when I was younger making fun of the really performance-artsy aspect to the opening ceremonies - I honestly don't think that any Olympic event in the next two weeks can top that for me now. It's funny to me that I used to think the artistry of the opening ceremonies was silly, and now I scour the internet for photos to use as future research and inspiration.

5. Very possible next trip: Glacier National Park.
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