Trademark Theater Presents Music/Movement Mashup THE HOLLOW
Local new works theater company Trademark Theater is heading into production for its third World Premiere. The Hollow, Trademark's most ambitious production yet, is a stunning mix of music, movement and visuals combined to create a new, boundary-breaking piece of theater. The Hollow will run from October 2nd through October 20th, 2019 at the Tek Box in the Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts in Downtown Minneapolis.
Described as a Concept Album/Contemporary Performance Hybrid, The Hollow is a brand-new theatrical production that features an evening of folk/rock/alternative music performed live on stage combined with movement and dance, all created and performed by local Twin Cities talent. The 90-minute show will feature a seven-piece band and two dancers as well as complex lighting and scenic designs. The unconventional production uses only music and choreography to tell a story about two people struggling to find meaning in their broken relationship. Trademark defines the show as multidisciplinary, taking elements from many different styles of performance to create the production, in this case dance, live music and visual arts. "It is the most contemporary we've gone as a company in terms of style," says Trademark Theater's Artistic Director Tyler Michaels King. "The whole piece weaves in and out of this mashup of genres and forms. It's a live concert, a dance show, and a piece of theater all wrapped up into one. We are finding innovative ways in which music and movement can tell a story about confronting personal demons and finding power through perseverance. It's abstract, it's eerie, it's poetic. Most of all, it rocks."
The Hollow has been in development for three years at Trademark Theater, the company's longest timeline yet. The project has had two separate workshop presentations in lead up to this fall's World Premiere, first in 2017 as a traditional play reading and again in 2018 as a one-night-only rock concert. "At Trademark, we pride ourselves on giving the artists time to really find the right direction for the piece. We never want to force a final product before its ready," says Tyler Michaels King. "About two years into development, we found that at the heart of The Hollow was a rock concert. Once we discovered this, we threw away the script and let the music and movement speak for themselves. The process has led us to something truly unique. A one-of-a-kind theatrical experience."
The Hollow's stunning music is created by local musicians and husband-and-wife team Jenna Wyse and Joey Ford, members of local bands Coy & Daring, Poor Nobodys, and Tree Party who created the music behind Live Action Set's 2011 hit Seven Shot Symphony. Their music has been described by critics as "dark, sparse rock 'n' roll," and "something different all together." They are continuing to break boundaries with their music in The Hollow: "We've really pushed ourselves into new territories. The overall sound we've created moves from ghostly, suspended soundscapes to in-your-face rock music. The whole album brings the listener closer and closer to the mystic side of nature which is at the heart of our lyrics. It all acts as metaphor for the story that the movement is communicating." The seven-piece band includes both acoustic and electric guitar and bass, drum kit, marimba and a three-woman vocal chorus featuring local performers Antonia Perez, Annie Schiferl, and Jennifer LeDoux.
The second husband-and-wife team on the project, Artistic Director Tyler Michaels King and local experimental performing artist Emily Michaels King, created the movement for The Hollow. Emily, known for her alternative performance style, was recently awarded Staff Pick at the Minnesota Fringe Festival for her solo show Magic Girl. She shares this about the choreography in The Hollow: "There are just two dancers on stage, Tyler and I, backed by our incredible band. Much of the movement is partner based; you'll see us lifting and balancing each other. But, unlike typical concert dance, the choreography has us connecting in a very human way; it's grounded and gestural and lives somewhere between pedestrian movement and contemporary dance."
Trademark Theater strives to do something new with each production they produce, and The Hollow is no exception. "We want the abstract-ness of The Hollow to be the driving factor," says Tyler Michaels King. "The piece is designed to resonate in varying ways with our patrons. We want our audiences to be able to place their own narratives on the simple and elegant story that we've created within the lyrics and movement. Everyone has experienced some sort of turmoil in a close relationship or within their own minds or bodies. The production, while edgy and conceptual, strives to be universal."
The Hollow will be presented at the Tek Box in the Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts in Downtown Minneapolis, October 2nd through October 20th, 2019.
Tickets for The Hollow are on sale now for $15-$30. To purchase tickets and to find more information, head to www.trademarktheater.org.