Compagnia De' Colombari Presents MORE OR LESS I AM In Celebration Of Walt Whitman's 200th Birthday
Compagnia de' Colombari, an international collective of performing artists founded and directed by Karin Coonrod,celebrates the bicentennial of the birth of America's most influential poet, Walt Whitman, with a revival of their acclaimed production More Or Less I Am. Performances begin May 18, 2019 at multiple venues throughout the five boroughs, with most performances being free and open to the public. More information can be found at www.colombari.org.
More Or Less I Am is a music-theater piece drawn entirely from Walt Whitman's revolutionary free verse long poem, "Song of Myself," one of the original twelve pieces that comprise his 1855 collection Leaves of Grass. Conceived and directed by Karin Coonrod with original music by Colin Jacobsen, Kyle Sanna, Eric Jacobsen, and Alex Sopp, the piece involves fifteen performers of various ages, genders, and ethnicities (six instrumentalists and eight actor/singers, one child).
More Or Less I Am includes passages spoken and sung in Spanish, among many other languages. Members of the audience will also be involved, as will local poets who have been asked to speak back to Walt in their own words. Featuring performers from the best of the theater, classical music, and jazz worlds, the piece lasts one hour.
"More Or Less I Am speaks-sings aloud and embodies the voice of Walt Whitman: to experience our individual greatness and our great commonality," said director Karin Coonrod. "Whitman takes the vision of America to a new level: a place we are still reaching for today. More Or Less I Am vitalizes Whitman's call to us, then and now, a declaration of interdependence, an awakening of the American consciousness."
Public Performance Schedule for More Or Less I Am:
Saturday, May 18, 2019, 2:30pm at Brooklyn Public Library, 10 Grand Army Plaza, Brooklyn
Sunday, May 26, 2019, 7pm at Fort Greene Park, Brooklyn
Thursday, May 30, 2019, 7pm at Housing Works Bookstore, 126 Crosby Street, SoHo
Friday, May 31, 2019, 7pm at Walt Whitman Birthplace, 246 Old Walt Whitman Road, Huntington Station LI
Saturday, June 1, 2019, 2:30pm at the Reading Area, Bryant Park, midtown Manhattan
More public performances will be announced at a later date.
Through a partnership with the New York City Department of Correction, a performance will be presented at the Manhattan Detention Complex on Tuesday, May 28, 2019.
More or Less I Am is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. Production design support is provided by the Edith Lutyens and Norman Bel Geddes Design Enhancement Fund, a program of the Alliance of Resident Theaters/New York (A.R.T/New York). Additional support is provided by the Malka Fund.
Compagnia de' Colombari wishes to thank the following project partners for their support: Charles Jarden and the Ft. Greene Park Conservancy; Cynthia Shor and the Walt Whitman Birthplace Association; Karen Karbiener and the Walt Whitman Initiative; Greg Trupiano and The Walt Whitman Project; Dan Fishman and the Bryant Park Corporation; Nicholas Higgins and Meredith Walters, the Brooklyn Public Library; Rosie Clarke and Sarah Morrow, Housing Works; and Tommy Demenkoff, New York City Department of Correction.
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