Unbound Productions' WICKED LIT 2015 Set for Tonight
Unbound Productions Executive Director Jonathan Josephson, Artistic Director Paul Millet, and Producing Artistic Director Jeff G. Rack have announced the line-up for WICKED LIT 2015, the company's 7th annual immersive theatre event that will for the 6th year take place at Mountain View Mausoleum and Cemetery in Altadena, California. Get a sneak peek at THE EBONY FRAME, left!
The production will run from tonight, October 2-November 14, 2015 and feature world premiere adaptations of The Grove of Rashomon adapted by Josephson (2013 Humana Festival, WL14: Las Lloronas) from the short story "In A Grove" by Japanese author Rynosuke Akutagawa & directed by Darin Anthony (Artistic Director of Moving Arts, The Book of Liz at The Blank), and The Ebony Frame adapted by regular Unbound Productions performer Susannah Myrvold from the short story by Australian writer Edith Nesbit and directed by Jaime Robledo (Stoneface, Sacred Fools and Pasadena Playhouse, 2015 SciFest).
The final play of the evening will be a reimagining of Millet's (WL13: The Masque of the Red Death Experience, The Tell-Tale Heart) adaptation of Edgar Allan Poe's The Fall of the House of Usher, directed by Rack (WL14: Dracula's Guest, WL13: The Legend of Sleepy Hollow). The is rounded out by the Wicked Lit 2015 Frame called The System, based on Edgar Allan Poe's The System of Dr. Tarr & Prof. Fether, conceived, written and directed by Debbie McMahon (WL14: The Monk). The Frame will be performed pre-show and during the evening's two intervals.
The cast will include 22 actors - 19 principals and 3 swings.
Actors who are returning to Unbound Productions include (with their most recent credit): Angie Hobin (Dracula's Guest, WL14), Kyle Fox (The Monkey's Paw, Mountain View Mausoleum), Carlos Larkin (The New Catacomb, WL13), Tanya Mironowski (The Doll, Strub Mansion), Michael Prichard (The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, WL13), Tina Van Berckelaer (The Spirits of Walpurgisnacht, WL14) and swings Elyse Ashton (The Spirits of Walpurgisnacht, WL14) and Eric Keitel (Dracula's Guest, WL14).
New actors to Unbound include: Alan Abelew, Deborah Dominguez, Kevin Dulude, Joe Fria, Sachiyo K., Arthur Keng, West Liang, Hisato Masuyam, Devon Michaels, Mark Ostrander, Robert Paterno, Alpha Takahashi, Kazumi Zatkin, and swing Laura Napoli.
"Last year's show was the biggest, most ambitious production we ever attempted and it was also by far our most successful," said Rack, who also oversees the production design and special effects for the event. "We are thrilled to bring back old friends and excited to add great theatre artists such as Darin and Jaime, who are new to WICKED LIT but well known to LA theatre audiences."
Said Millet, "Every year, we push ourselves to instill WICKED LIT with more surprises and more creative ways to tell great classic stories. We have become known as a Halloween event but we take great pride in our commitment to playwrights and our theatrical work."
The Grove of Rashomon and The Ebony Frame are the 25th and 26th plays to receive their world premiere from Unbound.
"We are also very proud of the fact that our shows continue to broaden in terms of theatrical diversity, both in terms of manner-of-storytelling, as well as the international impact of our source material and the makeup of our creative team," said Josephson. "Last year, one of our plays was inspired by a Mexican folktale, this year, one of our plays is inspired by a Japanese story and will feature an all Asian and Asian-American cast. Another one of our plays was adapted from a lauded female author from Australia by the wonderfully talented Susannah Myrvold. It is important to us that we bring a wide range of unique, creative voices to our productions."
WICKED LIT 2014 played to 100% capacity over six weeks and drew over 3,000 patrons to Altadena. The immersive event was named "Best Halloween Attraction" for the second year in a row by Hollywood Gothique (ahead of Universal Studios' Halloween Horror Nights and Dark Harbor at the Queen Mary) and Terry Morgan of Stage Raw said "An autumnal treat! For those who want to celebrate Halloween in an unusually theatrical way, this event won't disappoint."
WICKED LIT 2015 will run seven weeks and feature the popular behind-the-scenes "Backstage Experiences" that was introduced last year for an additional fee. This fundraising initiative allows a small number of guests to receive insight from the creators of the show while touring the Mausoleum.
WICKED LIT audiences will experience three short plays as they are led through the grounds of the mausoleum and cemetery by Storyguides. WICKED LIT is a walking show - patrons must be able to comfortably walk a minimum of 2,000 steps and climb stairs in order to experience this production. WICKED LIT 2015 contains mature themes, theatrical violence, and sexual situations - the production is recommended for audiences ages 16+. The running time will be approximately 2 hours and 45 minutes including two intervals.
The first WICKED LIT production was staged in 2009 on the grounds of Greystone Mansion in Beverly Hills. Since that time, nearly 10,000 patrons have enjoyed full productions of adaptations of authors such as Edgar Allan Poe, H.P. Lovecraft, Mark Twain, Charles Dickens, Robert E. Howard, Washington Irving, Robert Louis Stevenson, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, and many others at Greystone Mansion, Mountain View Mausoleum and Cemetery and numerous installation events throughout Southern California.
The mission of Unbound Productions, the theatre company that produces WICKED LIT, is to reimagine timeless stories for new audiences by creating immersive, theatrical adaptations of literature.
Visit wickedlit.org for complete pricing and scheduling details. WICKED LIT is also on Facebook.
The Grove of Rashomon
By Jonathan Josephson
Directed by Darin Anthony
Adapted from "In A Grove" by Rynosuke Akutagawa
Masago, a maiden, is missing and her samurai, Takehiko, is dead. As her mother investigates the brutal crime, she encounters numerous versions of what happened on that fateful night in a haunting cedar grove. Staged in the cemetery at Mountain View, The Grove of Rashomon is a reimagining of the iconic short story that inspired the Akira Kurosawa film Rashomon.
Featuring Sachiyo K., Arthur Keng, West Liang, Hisato Masuyam, Robert Paterno, Alpha Takahashi, and Kazumi Zatkin
The Fall of the House of Usher
By Paul Millet
Directed by Jeff G. Rack
Adapted from the short story of the same name by Edgar Allan Poe
An enhanced, updated version of the play that was featured in the very first Wicked Lit at Greystone Mansion in 2009, this macabre tale of desperation and ambition will be staged inside the iconic mausoleum on the Mountain View grounds. Nathaniel has received a desperate and mysterious letter from his friend Roderick Usher. When he arrives, he is drawn into a nightmare world that brings a family's horrifying past into an even more twisted and perverse present.
Featuring Carlos Larkin, Tanya Mironowski, Devon Michaels and Michael Prichard.
The Ebony Frame
By Susannah Myrvold
Directed by Jaime Robledo
Adapted from the short story of the same name by Edith Nesbit
Henry just inherited a lavish home from a relative he never met, and he is engaged to a woman who adores him beyond words - so things are good. But there is something about that painting that is just captivating - but what is it? Ah - nothing that can't be sorted out by a Satanic wedding.
Featuring Deborah Dominguez, Kevin Dulude, Joe Fria, Angie Hobin and Tina Van Berckelaer.
The System (The Wicked Lit 2015 Frame)
Conceived, written & directed by Debbie McMahon
Based on the short story The System of Dr. Tarr and Prof. Fether by Edgar Allan Poe
PERFORMANCES AND TICKETS:
October 2 - November 14, 2015, Limited engagement!
Thursday, October 1 (preview)
Friday-Sunday, Oct 2-4;
Thursday-Sunday, Oct 8-11;
Thursday-Sunday, Oct 15-18;
Wednesday-Sunday, Oct 21-25;
Wednesday-Sunday, Oct 28-Nov 1
Thursday-Sunday, Nov 5-8
Thursday-Saturday, Nov 12-14
All performances will begin promptly at 7:30 p.m. Tickets range from $35-75, see website for details. Backstage Experience passes will be available for an additional $25. For more information go to wickedlit.org or call (323) 332-2065. Mountain View Mausoleum & Cemetery is located at 2300 N. Marengo Ave. Altadena CA 91001. AMPLE FREE PARKING ON THE GROUNDS. Please consult a map before driving to the Mausoleum.
Founded in 2008 by Jonathan Josephson, Paul Millet and Jeff G. Rack, Unbound Productions is a nonprofit theatre company whose mission is to reimagine timeless stories for new audiences by creating immersive, theatrical adaptations of literature. Since our first full production of Wicked Lit in 2009, over 15,000 patrons have enjoyed our immersive theatre events at venues ranging from Mountain View Mausoleum and Cemetery, to Pasadena Museum of History, to Barney's Beanery in West Hollywood. Unbound has also presented staged readings at Long Beach Comic Con, Pasadena Art Walk, the West Hollywood Book Fair, NoHo Lit Crawl, The Chance Theatre, The Echo Theatre Company, and many other venues and events. Unbound has produced 26 world premiere plays throughout its history, some of which have gone on to be produced at venues across the country as well as Scotland, England and Cameroon.
The scope of Wicked Lit is to create dynamic new adaptations of classic horror literature. Over 10,000 patrons have enjoyed Wicked Lit productions and installations since Wicked Lit 2009 at the haunted Greystone Mansion in Beverly Hills. From 2010-2015, Wicked Lit has been staged at Mountain View Mausoleum and Cemetery in Altadena where audiences walk through the hallways of the mausoleum and among the headstones in the cemetery as our plays are staged all around. Unbound has also produced special installations of Mark Twain's A Ghost Story (Los Angeles Millennium Biltmore Hotel in conjunction with the 2011 Theatre Communications Group National Conference), Edgar Allan Poe's The Tell-Tale Heart (LA Mart in conjunction with ScareLA), and The Doll (Strub Mansion at the historic Mayfield Senior School in Pasadena). Since 2008, Unbound has also mounted over 100 free staged readings of Wicked Lit plays at libraries, schools, festivals, and special events all over Southern California including the Huntington Library and Botanical Gardens, NoHo LitWalk, Pasadena ArtWalk, West Hollywood Book Fair, Long Beach Comic Con and theaters such as The Chance Theatre, The Antaeus Company, The Blank Theatre Company, High Street Performing Arts Center, and many others.
Pictured: Deborah Dominguez as "The Woman" in THE EBONY FRAME, Wicked Lit 2015. Photo by John Thvedt.