Articles tagged with: Gyllian Raby

  • Stolen Theatre Collective and Brock University’s Department of Dramatic Arts present The Ash Mouth Man

    16r10_the_ash_mouth_manFor those who enjoy comedy with a dark undertow, plan to join us for the world premiere of The Ash Mouth Man, an original theatre work to be held in the Marilyn I. Walker Theatre at 15 Artists’ Common.

    Meet Lorna, who in the ‘50’s, is the 31st lady dentist in Canada. A bit of a social misfit, Lorna works on Pretty Girl Street, treating people with all kinds of disorders. Gradually, she discovers the dark forces lurking beneath the too perfect fantasy of her life – where even the Royal Mail Canada Man might carry a threat. She survives a sex scandal, discovers unusual and groundbreaking therapies, and with some help from her friends in the audience, confronts the timeless mythic figure of the Ash Mouth Man…Betty Crocker’s smile has never been so frightening.

    Inspired by Australian short story writer Kaaron Warren, director Gyllian Raby, and actor Danielle Wilson created the script, with the assistance of Wilson’s and Federico Holten-Andersen’s Stolen Theatre Collective company. The acting ensemble, led by Wilson, features Federico Holten-Andersen, Colin Bruce Anthes and Sean McClelland. Original music is by Max Holten-Andersen, set and lighting design is by Nigel Scott, costume design is by Genevieve Habib and stage management is by Dramatic Arts student Kaitlyn Séguin.

    The Marilyn I. Walker Theatre will be transformed into an intimate theatre space, which allows seating for 48 people per performance, running approximately 70 minutes in length.

    Danielle Wilson and Gyllian Raby are grateful for the community support for Stolen Theatre Collective’s endeavor. The City of St. Catharines Cultural Investment, the Walker Cultural Leader Foundation, The Match of Minds program and the Humanities Research Institute match the investment of the company members in creating original work out of our city. Wilson states, “Gyllian and I are very excited to be collaborating on an original Canadian piece after our production of Twelfth Night which we co-directed in 2013.”

    Presented by Stolen Theatre Collective and Brock University Department of Dramatic Arts
    September 15-18 & 23-25, 2016
    Evening shows (Thurs., Fri. and Sat.) at 8 p.m. (no Thurs., Sept. 22nd show); Sat. & Sun. matinees at 2 p.m.
    Marilyn I. Walker Theatre, Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts, 15 Artists’ Common, St. Catharines
    Limited seating, only 48 seats available per performance with a total of nine performances
    Tickets: $20† adult/senior; $15† student/art worker; $5 eyeGo program
    †Applicable fees and taxes are extra.
    Order tickets from the FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre Box Office: 905.688.0722 or Toll Free: 1.855.515.0722; online: firstontariopac.ca

    Limited paid parking is available on-site, however, there are more than 1,000 spots available in nearby parking garages, surface lots and on city streets within a five-minute walk to our address at 15 Artists’ Common. Visit www.stcatharines.ca/en/livein/ParkingLotsGarages.asp for a list of parking locations.

    For interviews please contact: 
Marie Balsom, Communications Coordinator, Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts
 T: 905-688-5550, ext. 4765 | E: mbalsom@brocku.ca  | W: www.brocku.ca/miwsfpa

    For all other inquiries, please contact: Danielle Wilson 

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    Categories: Events, Media Releases, News, Plays

  • DART 4F56 presents: The Flu Season by Will Eno

    Will Eno’s “The Flu Season” plays whack-a-mole with everything you expect love to be.

    On stage in the Dramatics Arts Theatre, this Oppenheimer award-winning play has been selected by the graduating dramatic arts students as the strangest, most theatrical screen shot of the state of romantic affairs today.

    This unexpected comedy comes from the playwright the New York Times hails as “a Samuel Beckett for the Jon Stewart generation.”

    Romance is hacked and hijacked when a man and woman meet in a “retreat centre” that is surely unique in the known universe. They are under the observation of technicians and caretakers who are themselves infected by the multiplying pathetic fallacies of romance. Lovers are mad. Love hurts. Love makes you do crazy things. Love is The Flu Season.

    Guided by director and Professor Gyllian Raby, the 4F56 company includes: Elizabeth Amos, Eliza Anthony, Kelsey Burcher, Mary Askwith, Maria Evers, Alex Franks, Mark Harrigan, Robert Herr, Daryl Hunter, Jeremy Knapton, Katelyn Lander, Kevin Langendyk, Cole Larson, Oriana Marrone, Melinda Mohammed, Josh Sanger, and Raylene Turner.

    Such programs from the Department of Dramatic Arts are an integral part of the Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts’ mandate in building connections between the community and the breadth of talent and creativity at Brock University. For more information about the Department of Dramatic Arts visit: brocku.ca/dramaticarts The Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts is located at its new, state-of-the-art teaching, production and performance facility in the heart of the City of St. Catharines.

    The Flu Season runs April 14, 15, and 16, at 7:30 pm, in the Dramatic Arts Theatre at the Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts, 15 Artists’ Common, in downtown St. Catharines. Tickets are $5 (applicable fees and taxes are extra) and can be purchased at the door, or through the FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre Box Office at 905.688.0722; long distance toll free 1-855-515-0722; email: boxoffice@firstontariopac.ca; online: firstontariopac.ca

    You can receive a $2 discount on your ticket with a purchase of a meal of $5 or more from the following participating downtown eatries: Mahtay Café, Rise Above, The Bull BBQ Pit, Sky Bar Lounge at Brock University, Bella Noella’s Pizzeria, Gwen’s Teas, and So Jollof. Simply bring your restaurant receipt or voucher to the FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre Box Office to receive this discount. This offer is not available online.

    Limited paid parking is available on-site, however, there are more than 1,000 spots available in nearby parking garages, surface lots and on city streets within a five-minute walk to our address at 15 Artists’ Common. Visit stcatharines.ca/en/livein/ParkingLotsGarages.asp for a list of parking locations

    For interviews please contact:
    Marie Balsom, Communications,
    Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts
    T: 905-688-5550, ext. 4765 | E: mbalsom@brocku.ca | W: brocku.ca/miwsfpa

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    Categories: Events, Media Releases, News, Plays

  • Dramatic Arts welcomes the new Foster Festival to St. Catharines

    foster_festival_launch_220The Department of Dramatic Arts is excited to be part of the new Foster Festival and their inaugural 2016 season at the new FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre in St. Catharines, Ontario.  Celebrated Canadian playwright Norm Foster recently joined festival executive director Emily Oriold and artistic director Patricia Vanstone (see photo, at left) for the launch of the festival – which is the first in Canada to celebrate the work of a living playwright.

    Mike Zettel recently wrote about the festival launch in Niagara This Week:

    Vanstone said one of the first partnerships they formed was with Brock’s dramatic arts department, which will be housed in the Marilyn I Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts right behind the performing arts centre. The Foster Festival will have access to a state-of-the-art production facility and will offer summer employment and educational opportunities to the department’s brightest and best current and graduating students, giving them their first crucial work experience in a professional environment.

    “It’s a tremendous partnership,” Vanstone said, adding it’s an example of welcoming atmosphere across the city and the willingness of groups to band together for a common cause. “This is a community that understands a great work ethic and the ability to pull together.”

    Professors Gyllian Raby and David Vivian (Chair) were present for the launch along with Alesia Dane (Coop Programs) and Jana Boniferro (Development and Communications Officer for the Faculty of Humanities) from Brock University and Sara Palmieri and Steve Solski of the FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre, among others.  To read about the launch see the articles in Niagara This Week and the St. Catharines Standard and visit the Festival website.

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  • COMMOTION wins Gold and Silver!

    commotion_prestige_220Professor Gyllian Raby of Dramatic Arts (DART) and DART Alumna Caitlin English were recently honoured by the news that their film COMMOTION was awarded a Gold medal in the education category and a Silver medal in the research category by Prestige Film Awards, an international juried competition that connects filmmakers with distributors.

    Commotion is a tri-generational program that trains emerging Brock Graduates to create theatre and work with high school students in the surrounding community. The program is run by Gyllian Raby, a Brock professor and Pablo Felices Luna, the past artistic director for Carousel Players youth theatre in St Catharines.

    In reaching out to the local youth, this program is a vital resource to identifying and teaching the relationship between the creative process and group dynamics for Brock’s emerging artists.

    For more information about the project see this news item from November 2011.  See also Prestige Film Awards.

    The COMMOTION project was made possible by SSHRC: Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the Department of Dramatic Arts of the Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts at Brock UniversityCarousel Players, TALK Niagara and with support from the District School Board of Niagara.

    Congratulations Gyllian and Caitlin!

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    Categories: Alumni, Faculty & Instructors, News

  • Awkward and Uncomfortable

    Three interlocking stories explore how to survive the turbulence that washes over us when we question fundamental aspects of our identities. Is it better to find the answers to our secrets or to leave them locked away? And where is that elusive happy ending?

    More details:

    The Department of Dramatic Arts’ fourth-year production brings “Awkward and Uncomfortable” to a whole new level!

    An original performance by the fourth-year Devised Theatre class (DART 4F56) will be held on April 16, 17, and 18, 2015 at 7:30 pm, in the Studio Theatre (ST107) at Brock University.

    It is awkward and uncomfortable, but you’ll always have to deal with the two per cent of negative extremists.  If you’re an artist or you buck the trend of mainstream culture you’ll always be shouting out from the margins! How does one keep going when the struggle always comes looking for us? Answers are explored through spoken word, choreography and scenes that explore trust, relationships, and self-acceptance. Do we continue relationships when trust is unclear? Do we follow our future when those around us do not believe in it?

    Tracy is a construction worker who’s just been accepted by the guys, but it all falls apart. Diane and her partner have struggled to be accepted as a lesbian couple, and won, but suddenly her relationship seems empty. Carl has successfully completed his gender transition but his past comes back to bite him in a lawsuit that has unexpected consequences. This production by graduating students of Dramatic Arts’ devising class offers superhero guidance for the survival of the quirkiest at the Droopy Vine bar where all are welcome.

    Set designer Alanna Stewart has created a playful space inspired by Brazilian Favelas that displays the distressed urban world though graffiti and bright colours, a giant community piecing together against all odds. Costume designer Gina Greco, positions the characters as parts of the urban hierarchy through a clash of modern Toronto Queen West and Church Wellesley style, in order to present a beautiful slum, haute, and fantasy world.

    Professor and director Gyllian Raby guided the creative process drawing on her experience of creating new plays with One Yellow Rabbit and the RSVP process. Ensemble members include: Amanda McDonnell; Nick Leno; Kendra Neaves; Hayley Malouin;  Misha Harding; Michael Caccamo; Chloe Coyle;  Bri Lidstone; Nicola Franco; Rachel Romanoski; Katie Coseni;  Sean Rintoul; Marie Barros;  Emily Ferrier;  Maggi Robertson and Kate Croome.

    The DART 4F56 class is one where students work together collectively. Students use the knowledge they have accumulated throughout their four years of the Dramatic Arts program to create, build, and produce a collaborative piece that embraces the physical expressivity of Grotowski and LeCoq, action study from Stanislavsky, the performance clarity of Brechtian theories, and the work in voice, speech and spontaneity that grounds research and critical theory in human relations. A good theatre process takes awkward and uncomfortable to a whole new level!

    FOR TICKET RESERVATIONS: awkwardanduncomfortable@gmail.com
    Location: Room ST107 (Studio Theatre), Schmon Tower, Brock Campus.
    Admission: Donations accepted

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    Categories: Events, Plays

  • THE BELLE’S STRATAGEM

    “Marie Antoinette” by Yuling Deng

    WRITTEN BY: Hannah Cowley
    DIRECTED BY: Gyllian Raby
    SCENOGRAPHER: Kelly Wolf

    November 13, 14, and 15, 2014 at 7:30 p.m.
    Matinee performance: November 14 at 11:30 a.m.

    Performed in the Sean O’Sullivan Theatre, Brock University

    Hannah Cowley’s most successful Town Comedy of 1783 demonstrated how to get your man and keep him in Georgian times — but once relocated in today’s Toronto, the laughing feminism lurking within the Marriage Plot is exposed in all its decadent hilarity.

    purchase tickets here

    A Study Guide is available for review, prepared by Assistant Director Nicholas Leno: download to print a copy (PDF, 3.7 MB)

    Please scan here to buy tickets and follow us on social media. keepingupwithmrsracket.com

    The Belle’s (Social Media) Stratagem
    A central character in the Department of Dramatic Arts’ autumn Mainstage production, The Belle’s Stratagem, will have an active life on social media thanks to a partnership between students in one of the department’s courses and the Mainstage production team. The goal of this partnership is extend the life of The Belle’s Stratagem both before ad after the actual run (November 13-15) and to engage audiences in critical dialogue around the show.

    Director and DART professor Gyllian Raby and assistant director Nick Leno have adapted and updated Hannah Cowley’s 18th-century comedy to be set in today’s Toronto. Through Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube, tech-savvy students in DART 3P95: Studies in Praxis I: Theatre Criticism are creating an online identity for one of the play’s central characters, Mrs. Racket. Followers of @racketlife can see photos of her favourite products, read her daily aphorisms, and watch “fan” videos posted on YouTube. Mrs. Racket’s online persona not only develops the character beyond the page and stage, but also highlights some of the production’s key themes related to consumerism, celebrity, and social class.

    The social media platforms officially launch on October 20. Each platform is interconnected through the blog www.keepingupwithmrsracket.com; the blog is also accessible via the production’s QR code, which is included in all publicity materials. Followers are encouraged to interact with Mrs. Racket across all three platforms using the hashtag #racketlife: they can repost her Instagram photos or post and tag their own, tweet with Mrs. Racket, and vlog about the production on YouTube. The possibilities for participation are endless! During the show’s run, Praxis students will be present before each performance to demonstrate this technology through an interactive lobby display.

    This partnership is part of a key component of the Theatre Criticism course, in which students immerse themselves behind-the-scenes in creative processes with local arts organizations, and write about it for the course blog, DARTcritics.com. The Belle’s (Social Media) Stratagem is an innovation this year, the first time that Theatre Criticism students have gone behind the scenes on a DART Mainstage and the first time that the learning outcomes involve a social media strategy.

    Instagram account: @racketlife
    Twitter account: @racketlife
    YouTube channel: Racketlife


    some words from our guests:

    …excellent adaptation with the references to modern Toronto and all its foibles.
    – Associate Dean, Dr. Brian Power

    By re-historicizing Hannah Cowley, [Gyllian Raby, the director] is able to liberate her message. Cowley’s hesitant feminism is sharpened in Raby’s adaption. And shifting the play’s locale from eighteenth-century London to twenty-first century Toronto, Raby adds biting commentary – much of it delivered through choruses of rap music – on the ravaging cultural and economic effects of unfettered financial capitalism, which goes well beyond Cowley’s predictable tut-tutting about the vulgar spending displays of England’s nabobs. . . . . Mixing rap music with formal eighteenth-century drama sounds depressingly like a sterile post-modern conceit. But it works wonderfully well in this instance, partly because Raby is the director of the play she adapted. She directs an exuberant student cast who seem just as much at home mincing through the formalities of a masqued ball as they do gyrating to the strains of Rick Ross, Lil’ Mama, and Salt ’n’ Pepa.
    – from a review by Professor Emeritus John Sainsbury in the online British Journal of Eighteenth-Century Studies published by the The British Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies.


    Press:

    Published on Nov 8, 2014: The Department of Dramatic Arts at Brock University presents The Belle’s Stratagem from November 13th to 15th. Katie Jones reports. See the Cogeco TV report on The Belle’s Stratagem:

     

    Published on Nov 11, 2014: From Brock TV, a look into The Belles Stratagem, opening this Thursday! Meet the cast and crew of DART’s latest production of Hannah Cowley’s The Belle’s Stratagem.

     


    Photos:

    Painting the set floor for Belles Stratagem. L-R: Nikka Collison, Caroline Coon, Andrew Von Lukawiecki, and Brian Cumberland (Production Manager)

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  • Another Successful Event for COMMOTION

    Commotioneers From Laura Secord Secondary School created and performed "On the Line". A play about violence on and off the internet. Photo: Ron Gonzalez, David Chanthilath, Sarah Lundrigan-Randall, Matt Willms, Nathan Hammerling, Alexandra Li Tomulescu, Danielle Lauzon, Lianna Wouda, Jenna Ahle, Tannar Smith, James Thompson and Tanisha Medford

    Commotioneers From Laura Secord Secondary School created and performed “On the Line”, a play about violence on and off the internet. Photo: Ron Gonzalez, David Chanthilath, Sarah Lundrigan-Randall, Matt Willms, Nathan Hammerling, Alexandra Li Tomulescu, Danielle Lauzon, Lianna Wouda, Jenna Ahle, Tannar Smith, James Thompson and Tanisha Medford

    Commotion is a tri-generational program that trains emerging Brock Graduates to create theatre and work with high school students in the surrounding community. The program is run by Gyllian Raby, a Brock professor and Pablo Felices Luna, the artistic director for Carousel Players youth theatre in St Catharines. In reaching out to the local youth, this program is a vital resource to identifying and teaching the relationship between the creative process and group dynamics for Brock’s emerging artists.

    Twice a week, for a twelve week period, the students engage in high-octane, personal and inventive processes that lead towards devising a one-act play for public presentation. The groups alernate their creative strategies between four compass points of resource exploration, scored improvisation, evaluation of cultural assumptions and participation with their surrounding community. Community members from cross-disciplinary backgrounds provided feedback to the students and attempt to illuminate the expressive voice of the group presentation as a whole. As a crucial aspect to the program, this process aims to unfold the interests and concerns that are the common denominator of the group, rather than those proposed by external media.

    The presentations were held at the Courthouse Theatre in St Catharines between December 8th and 10th and were a great success!

    Gyllian comments, “In the last two weeks of the program, the COMMOTION team helps the groups ‘weave’ their material into a one-act plays and rehearse for the production. The fact that the play script arrives so late can be nerve-wracking, but the final production is made possible by the trust the participants develop in their work and in one another, as well as the professional artistic support by Carousel Players. The young people we have worked with have taught us a great deal about collaborative processes, ownership and creative practice. They have inspired us.”

    The COMMOTION Project is made possible by SSHRC: Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the Department of Dramatic Arts of the Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts at Brock University, Carousel Players, TALK Niagara and approval from the District School Board of Niagara.

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  • COMMOTION AT THE COURTHOUSE: a three-year Partnership with Niagara Region Schools

    Over the past three years, the COMMOTION partnership between six Niagara Region high schools, Carousel Players, the Department of Dramatic Arts of the Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts, Brock University, and TALK Niagara (Teams of Adults Listening to Kids) has given 80 students an opportunity to create and perform six new plays.

    Each group of high school students creates a play at their school through a 12-week drama program and presents it at the Sullivan Mahoney Courthouse Theatre. Brock University Professor Gyllian Raby and Carousel’s Artistic Director Pablo Felices Luna lead the project with the support of Bonnie Prentice from TALK Niagara, an umbrella group of 15 community organizations dedicated to youth concerns.

    This month, 22 students from Governor Simcoe Secondary School and Sir Winston Churchill Secondary School are playing with different modes of creativity known as RSVP to build their characters, scenes and stories into two new plays. Blythe Barker, Jacqueline Costa, Caitlin English and Trevor Rotenberg, facilitators trained through Brock University’s Department of Dramatic Arts, have been working with students an estimated 240 hours at their schools since September 2011.

    Free performances of the plays written and performed by these students will be held at the Sullivan Mahoney Courthouse Theatre in St. Catharines on Thursday, December 8, 2011, at 9:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.; Friday, December 9, at 9:30 a.m.; and Saturday, December 10, at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. Reservations are required.  For the free tickets, call Carousel Players at 905.682.8326 x 26.

    “Now in the third year of COMMOTION, Pablo and I find it more invigorating than ever,” states Gyllian Raby. “Creating a show for this semi-professional production places enormous demands on these high school seniors, yet time after time they show themselves not only equal to the task but able to surprise everyone with their insights about, for example, the social pressures of the internet, abuses of authority, and balancing individual identity with relationships.”

    Co-leader Felices Luna adds, “COMMOTION takes the excellent work done by Niagara’s drama teachers to a new level outside the classroom. We’ve worked with 58 students from E.L.Crossley Secondary School, Eastdale Secondary School, Laura Secord Secondary School and St. Catharines Collegiate. We thank drama teachers Jennifer Benson, Tracy Garratt, Karen Hancock, Rassika Malhotra, Brenna McAllister and Tracy Thorpe for welcoming us into their schools, for actively fostering creativity in their students and for their passionate commitment to drama at their school. There are many other schools and teachers we hope to work with in the future.”

    The COMMOTION project is made possible by SSHRC: Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the Department of Dramatic Arts of the Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts at Brock University, Carousel Players, TALK Niagara and approval from the District School Board of Niagara.

    For tickets contact: Jane Gardner, 905-682-8326 x23 or jane@carouselplayers.com

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    Categories: Alumni, Current Students, Faculty & Instructors, News

  • COMMOTION AT THE OLD COURTHOUSE – YOUTH ISSUES TAKE THE STAGE

    (Source: Carousel Players)

    COMMOTION will give 23 Niagara students an opportunity to perform two new plays that they’ve created over a 12 week drama enrichment program at their high schools and present it at the Sullivan Mahoney Courthouse Theatre from December 9-11, 2010. Thanks to support from TALK Niagara (Teams of Adults Listening to Kids) and Bonnie Prentice, students from 8 high schools all over Niagara will see these plays created by students from Eastdale Secondary School and Laura Secord Secondary School. Free performances at the Old Courthouse are Thursday, December 9th at 10 am and 12:30pm, Friday, December 10th at 10am and 12:30 pm, and Saturday, December 11th at 7pmFor ticket information call Carousel Players at 905-682-8326 X26.

    The play On the Line by Laura Secord Secondary School students tackles the influence of technology and media on young people, bullying and family relations. Students from Eastdale Secondary School have created the play Squawk: Flippin’ the Bird which explores the use and abuse of authority, decision-making and issues of identity. Both plays open up new doors for discussion with teens on what happens on the internet, the social pressures they face, and they encourage students to share stories with their peers about their own experiences. Roxolana Chwaluk, Caitlin English, Brandon Pachan and Trevor Rotenberg, facilitators trained through Brock University’s Drama Department have been working with the students an estimated 240 hours at their schools since September 2010.

    “The characters, scenes and stories from the plays evolved from improvised scenes created by the students and developed through a play building process called RSVP. In Commotion, we start exploring resource materials, like umbrellas or ironing boards, and allow the stories, issues and insights to emerge from this work” said COMMOTION leader Pablo Felices Luna, Artistic Director at Carousel Players. “The COMMOTION program is led by Professor Gyllian Raby with designers Michael Greves, Joe Lapinski and Doug Ledingham. We thank drama teachers Tracey Garratt from Eastdale Secondary School and Tracy Thorpe from Laura Secord Secondary School for welcoming us into their schools, for actively fostering creativity in their students and for their passionate commitment to drama at their school.”

    This is the second year of the three year COMMOTION project and involves Carousel Players, Brock University’s Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts and TALK Niagara (Teams of Adults Listening to Kids). Last year 35 students from E.L. Crossley Secondary School and St. Catharines Collegiate participated in the program. COMMOTION is made possible by SSHRC: Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and approval from the District School Board of Niagara to work with participating high school students on the project.

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  • Big Love

    By CHARLES MEE
    Director: Gyllian Raby
    Scenographer: Karyn McCallum
    Click here for Media Release  in PDF format, or here to see it online.

    Performance 1 (Opening): Thursday February 11, 7:30 pm
    Performance 2: Friday February 12, 1:00 pm
    (group and student Matinee)
    Performance 3: Friday February 12, 7:30 pm
    Performance 4: (Closing): Saturday February 13, 7:30 pm

    DART’s February production, Big Love, is American Charles Mee’s contemporary update of Aeschylus’ The Suppliants. First performed circa 423 BC, The Suppliants is one of the oldest plays in the world and the only play to survive from the trilogy in which it originated. Aeschylus titled the trilogy The Danaids after the daughters of Danaius who are also the protagonists of his play.

    Big Love took America by storm in 2000 to 2003 precisely because Mee is in tune with his age. It is not just the ideas and the exhilarating physicality within Mee’s plays that caught the attention of America, but also his use of freeware. Posting the script online provided an open invitation for people to re-make the play however they would like.

    The intensity of the scenario bursts the bounds of rational discourse and must sometimes be danced, sung, howled and fought out. Designer Karyn McCallum has set our production in an installation where Mattel’s gendered Ken and Barbie dolls hang from the lighting grid and punch-bag forms are anchored to the stage floor. Together, they reach for one another in an uneasy balance. Some of the music proposed by Mee will be used in the production but paired with contemporary pieces selected for this version. A deeply passionate movement score with some choreography from Allen Kaeja (of Toronto’s independent dance company Kaeja d’dance) moves the play through an exhaustive demonstration of the gender anxieties felt by men and women alike, to a finale that lies beyond justice. The production aims to move seamlessly from pop culture to philosophy to physical extremes. This is in an attempt to convey the chaotic savagery of love, the dark psyche of the survivor and, at the end, the impossibility of justice or forgiveness.

    Educators and Counsellors:
    Big Love : A Primer, is an introduction to our production, written by our Director, Gyllian Raby
    Download your PDF copy of Big Love: A Primer

    Big Love is an intellectually and theatrically challenging show recommended to the campus community (and with teacher guidance to students in grade 11 or 12) who are interested in law, philosophy and/or classics. Students can study and discuss Big Love (which Mee has posted free online!) prior to attending the production. This will enable students to look beyond the pop-culture surface and see the underlying issues that echo yet vary from its classic antecedent.

    Photos:

    Video:

    Click on the screenshot to the left to watch a video about our production, including an interview of the Director and DART Professor, Gyllian Raby, by DART student, Tanisha Minson (produced by Brock TV).  (NOTE: link currently broken. We are tracking down the original video.)

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