St. Ann's Warehouse Presents 16th Annual LABAPALOOZA! Festival of New Puppet Theater This Weekend
The Puppet Lab, which celebrates its 16th anniversary this year, is St. Ann's Warehouse'sexperimental haven for artists developing interdisciplinary projects for puppet and object theater. Under the direction of Lab Co-Directors Matthew Acheson and Krissy Smith, participating artists and their collaborators have met weekly over several months to develop projects, share puppetry elements and other design and technical ideas, discuss plot structure and character development, and work on narrative. They will present their works-in-progress in the annual Labapalooza! festival, which will run today, May 29 - June 1 at St. Ann's Warehouse (29 Jay Street, Brooklyn).
Labapalooza! embraces a broad diversity of new puppetry works, which are presented in two programs (A and B). Program A includes Gulliver's Travels (Excerpts), from Puppet Cinema and Justin Perkins; Rock Paper Scissors, from Julian Crouch and Saskia Lane; Hildegard (Vision), from Pioneers Go East Collective; and Pink Bunny, from Maiko Kikuchi. It will run May 29 and 31 at 8pm, and June 1 at 3pm.
Program B featuresThe Fox vs. The Kingdom, by Studio Reynard (Anastacia Bolina, Laura Brenneman and Hélène Lesterlin); American Weather (Excerpt), by Chris Green; Space Available, by Pepper Fajans; and The Wider Earth, by Dead Puppet Society. Program B runs May 30 at 8pm, May 31 at 3pm and June 1 at 7pm.
Both programs will include Frances Faye's Folk Song Sing-a-Long, with Ken Nintzel.
Advance tickets are $20 for one program or $30 for both and are available via the St. Ann's Warehouse Box Office online at www.stannswarehouse.org, by phone at 718.254.8779, or in person at 29 Jay Street (Tuesday through Saturday, 1:00 PM-7:00 P.M.). Phone sales are also available at 866.811.4111 during extended hours (Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM-9:00 P.M.; Saturday and Sunday, 10:00 A.M.-6:00 P.M.). The box office is always open one hour prior to show time for ticket pick-up and walk-up sales. Tickets will be $25 ($40 for both programs) at the door.
The creative team for this year's Labapalooza! includes Heather Sparling (Lighting Designer), John Mosele (Technical Director) and Sean M. Daniels (Assistant Technical Director).
The festival is funded by the Jim Henson Foundation, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and the New York State Council on the Arts. Funding for The Wider Earth, by Dead Puppet Society, has been made possible by the Puffin Foundation Ltd.
CURTAIN ACT (Both programs)
Frances Faye's Folk Song Sing-A-Long
With Ken Nintzel
Frances Faye's Folk Song Sing-A-Long is based on the 1957 jazz/folk album Frances Faye Sings Folk Songs. With songs sung and swung in Faye's indelible style, including her alternative lyrics and comedic banter, this work for object theater sets such classics as "Lonesome Road," "Skip to My Lou" and "Shortnin' Bread"in motion through a combination of animated text, bold visuals and D.I.Y chutzpah.
Gulliver's Travels (Excerpts)
By Puppet Cinema / Justin Perkins
This loose adaptation of Gulliver's Travels uses rod puppets and miniature sets in combination with live filmmaking to present worlds and creatures on fantastic scales, giving the classic story new life. Gulliver's journeys on dangerous seas, and his encounters with tiny Lilliputians and enormous Brobdingnagians, unfold live as big-screen illusions are created on stage.
Rock Paper Scissors
By Julian Crouch and Saskia Lane
An egg cracks open, and a restless paper spirit emerges. What will it become? Rock Paper Scissors is the story of our relationship to ourselves, and the world around us. It is told with crumpled brown paper, found objects, shadows and a mound of sand.
By Pioneers Go East Collective
Hildegard (Vision) is a surreal multi-media opera with found-object and figurative puppetry, animation and video, inspired by the life and work of the visionary nun. Unfolding over dreamlike scenes structured around the distinct phases of a migraine cycle, this piece explores how Hildegard's hallucinations fed her creative expression, allowing her to transcend her cloistered environment.
By Maiko Kikuchi
Don't think whether it is possible. It's your life. It's your call. So, now tell me. What do you want to be?
The Fox vs. The Kingdom
By Studio Reynard | Anastacia Bolina, Laura Brenneman and Hélène Lesterlin
In this ancient beast epic, told by a trio of troubadours with shadow puppets and live music, Reynard the Fox stands accused of murder, theft, adultery, sacrilege and excessive violence. Witness the court's unraveling as lust for revenge and grisly tales of woe overwhelm the official festivities. Careening from folk song to operatic satire to salacious tango, animal appetites dominate in this retelling of a medieval blockbuster.
American Weather (Excerpt)
By Chris Green
Deploying ready-mades, live animation, dancing actors, bunraku-style puppets, and original songs, American Weather is a fugue of surrealist micro-plays celebrating the mythic power of American clichés. Developed in an ensemble with Yoko Myoi, Erin K. Orr, Kirsten Kammermeyer, Chris Green and Quince Marcum, with musical accompaniment by Yasmin Reshamwallah.
By Pepper Fajans
The puppeteer has built a group of puppets, diverse in material and scale and operable by a single performer. The work explores the challenges of solo operation: handling techniques, sustained stage activity and dynamic content. Through this process the puppeteer has found unique characters in each puppet and developed an ongoing involvement in their collective existence in a stage space. The performance includes live music.
The Wider Earth
By Dead Puppet Society
Set during the beginnings of the natural philosophy movement, The Wider Earth is a compelling new mythology based loosely on the story of Charles Darwin. Told by an ensemble of performers using non-traditional forms of puppetry and object manipulation, the work transforms the scale of the stage to weave the story of a young man who has witnessed the spectacle and wonder of the wider earth.
About St. Ann's Warehouse: For over three decades, St. Ann's has commissioned, produced and presented an eclectic body of innovative theater and concert presentations that meet at the intersection of theater and rock and roll. Since 2001, the organization has helped vitalize the emerging Brooklyn waterfront neighborhood, DUMBO, where St. Ann's Warehouse has become one of New York City's most important and compelling live performance destinations. After twelve years at 38 Water Street, until the Tobacco Warehouse opens in Fall 2015, St. Ann's is temporarily presenting performances at 29 Jay Street. The Tobacco Warehouse will be the first permanent home for St. Ann's.
Through its signature multi-artist concerts and groundbreaking music/theater collaborations, St. Ann's Warehouse has become the artistic home for the American avant-garde, international companies of stature and award-winning emerging artists. Highly acclaimed landmark productions include Lou Reed's and John Cale's Songs for 'Drella; Marianne Faithfull's Seven Deadly Sins; Artistic Director Susan Feldman's Band in Berlin; Charlie Kaufman and the Coen Brothers' Theater of the New Ear; The Royal Court Theater's 4:48 Psychosis; The Globe Theatre of London's Measure for Measure; Druid Ireland's The Walworth Farce, The New Electric Ballroom and Penelope by Enda Walsh; Walsh's Misterman, featuring Cillian Murphy; Lou Reed's Berlin; the National Theatre of Scotland's acclaimed Black Watch; Kneehigh Theatre's Brief Encounter and The Wild Bride; Yael Farber's Mies Julie; Dmitry Krymov Lab's Opus No. 7; the Donmar Warehouse all-female Julius Caesar; Kate Tempest's Brand New Ancients; and the Tricycle Theatre production of Red Velvet. St. Ann's has championed such artists as Jeff Buckley, The Wooster Group, Mabou Mines, Cynthia Hopkins, Enda Walsh, Emma Rice, Daniel Kramer and Daniel Kitson.