FELA!'s Chris Berry to Present THE LEGEND OF YAUNA at BAM Fisher, 2/21-22
On the nights of Friday, February 21 and Saturday, February 22 theatre-goers can experience the mind-bending fantasy and unique musical experience of THE LEGEND OF YAUNA, an incredible tale created by theGrammy award-winning composer Chris Berryand reinvented by the creative director of the Tony award-winning Broadway production FELA!,Maija Garcia. Debuting at the legendary BAM (Brooklyn Academy Of Music) Fisher in Brooklyn, New York, the theatrical event of non-traditional instrumentation, including African drums and the distinctive sound of the Mbira, and contemporary dance set the stage for thewisdom of Yauna, an ancient narrative set 12,000 years ago. Casting for the independent production, presented by BanaKuma, will run from January 7-9 at the DANY Studios in Manhattan; tickets for the February performance at BAM Fisher will go on sale January 14.
Helmed by the pen and voice of the talented Berry, Yauna's story is a mystical journey through Water, Earth, Air and Fire tribes where names were not spoken, but sung. In a desperate quest to save his ailing father and rejoin his wife and daughters, the fictional Yauna takes viewers on a journey where he is faced with seemingly impossible challenges at every turn, revealing the power of non-violence, self-sovereignty and forgiveness. The audience will soon see that in the world of THE LEGEND OF YAUNA: Music Changes Everything.
"The story of Yauna is one that has been a part of my life for many years, impacting me in a profound way. I'm thrilled beyond words to give life to this legend on such an incredible stage, BAM Fisher. Collaborating with the extraordinarily talented Maija Garcia allows the perfect opportunity to reinvent Yauna; my hope is that viewers can join us in identifying with Yauna, escapingwith Yauna, and re-engaging their lives through Yauna," says Berry.
THE LEGEND OF YAUNA is an independent theatrical workshop presented by BanaKuma and produced by Shumba Records. Music and story will be performed by Chris Berry, Maija Garcia serves as the director and choreographer, Akhi Lavoie as producer, artwork is produced by Leif Wold and the production manager and casting director is KufikiriImara.
GrammyAward-winner Chris Berry is an eclectic singer and songwriter, multi-instrumentalist virtuoso, and high-energy performer and teacher. He has performed his powerful Afro-infused sound around the World for over twenty years; rocking audiences from NYC's Irving Plaza to stadiums in South Africa and Sydney Australia's famous Opera House. He has released over a dozen albums; scored the soundtrack for three films; and has collaborated and performed with some of the World's best performers like Eminem, Grateful Dead drummer Bill Kreutzmann, Xavier Rudd, Brazilian Girls, String Cheese Incident, Senegalese Afro-Pop sensation YousoouN'dour, Cuban Legends Los Munequitos de Mantanzas, Jazz artist Paul Winter, Jamaican rhythm and production duo Sly (Dunbar) and Robbie (Shakespeare), Fugee's producer Handel Tucker, and more. Berry released his latest album "King of Me" in 2013; Berry is based out of Brooklyn, NY and Hawaii.
Maija Garcia is a director/choreographer who worked alongside Bill T. Jones to create the Tony award winning musical FELA! on Broadway, and directed the international tours. Garcia founded Organic Magnetics (OM) theater arts to create live installations by sustainable design through cross-genre and cross-cultural collaborations. Maija conceived and directed Ghosts of Manhattan, an interactive history in Fort Tryon Park and will premiere I am New York: Juan Rodriguez - a biomythograpy on NYC's first immigrant at El Museo del Barrio in May 2014.
Recent collaborations include Fats Waller Dance Party with Jason Moran &MeshellN'degeocello, Neighbors at The Public Theater with Niegel Smith, Not Wanted on the Voyage with Amanda Dehnert, and music videos for Angelique Kidjo and SeunKuti. A global citizen with a passion for arts education, Garcia directs OM Theater Arts in Harlem, teaches contemporary dance at Steps on Broadway and dance/theater at the City College of New York.