Columbia Stages to Present OLD PAPER HOUSES, 3/26-29
Columbia Stages presents the new play OLD PAPER HOUSES created by Piehole - the Brooklyn-based ensemble. Directed by the company's Artistic Director, Tara Ahmadinejad, OLD PAPER HOUSES cycles through faith and doubt to ask: how do we find things to believe in?
OLD PAPER HOUSES follows a group of wavering idealists searching for meaning and purpose in all the wrong places, moving from dreary 1970s New England to an 1840s Transcendental utopia and beyond. When they finally set out to realize their own vision for an exemplary community -- filled with picturesque storefronts, spooky bogs, and troubling historical pageants -- they struggle to uphold their principles.
Piehole is a laboratory of theatre artists whose work has been called "exhilarating" by the Village Voice and "a beauty to behold" by the Philadelphia City Paper. Piehole creates work through a collaborative process; OLD PAPER HOUSES began with Bernadette Mayers's book of poetry The Golden Book of Words, which was written amidst the brutal winters of Lenox, MA in the late 1970s. The creative team also explored historical accounts of Brook Farm, the 1840s Transcendentalist commune, including letters written by short-term resident Nathaniel Hawthorne. These rich source materials have combined with paper dioramas, live feed projection, and ecstatic small-town parades to create a funny and moving show that gets to the heart of a universal challenge: the search for something to hold on to, in spite of bleak realities and disillusionment.
OLD PAPER HOUSES is dramaturged by Elliot B. Quick and is developed and performed by Benoit Johnson, Miranda Kahn, Allison LaPlatney, Alexandra Panzer, Emilie Soffe, Daniel Sterba, and Jeff Wood, in collaboration with writer Jessie Renee Hopkins and with contributions by Kathryn Wallem.
Original compositions by Jason Sigal, scenic design by Kristen Robinson, costume design by Nikki Delhomme, lighting design by Dan Stearns, sound design by Michael Costagliola, and video design by Paul Piekarz. Stage Managed by Caroline Watters. Produced by Meg Kelly and Alexandra Lalonde.