By: Dec. 04, 2017
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La MaMa presents the world premiere of GEMINI STARS / SCORPIO STARS by Pioneers Go East Collective. The production is conceived and directed by Gian Marco Lo Forte in collaboration with Daniel Diaz. Performances begin December 7 at La MaMa Experimental Theatre.

Set during a holiday party in a Brooklyn apartment, GEMINI STARS / SCORPIO STARS is a music-theatre work inspired by stories of LGBTQ vloggers coming out and self-identifying to the world on YouTube, juxtaposed with stories of exclusion and violence IRL. Over the course of the Christmas party, New York based downtown artists share psychological and emotionally intimate experiences. It is a funny and touching performance about Realvlogs love, self-identity, and self-defense while reflecting on what the community has achieved (or hasn't) using social media. This close-knit group of diverse friends have found each other and have chosen spend Christmas together. Like all good parties, this festive gathering is ultimately a safe space to share, and simply be.

GEMINI STARS / SCORPIO STARS is written, choreographed and performed by Daniel Diaz, Jess Barbagallo (Harry Potter and the Cursed Child), Michaela Reggio (Comes a Faery at The New Ohio), Niko Tsocanos (Then She Fell), Fleur Voorn (Post Mortem), and Ryan Leach (Upright Citizens Brigade), with special musical guest Ombro de Oro. (Note: Check the website for specific performers' schedule.) The production also features performances on video by Julia Dobner-Pereira, G.J. Dowding, Shane O'Neill, and Chloe Piazza. The production team includes Ryan Downey (stage manager/ assistant director), Daniel Diaz (assistant director), two-time Bessie recipient Philip Trevino (lighting design/ environment design) Jon Burklund (video design), and Hao Bai (audio design).

Originally from Italy, Gian Marco Lo Forte is a queer artist and artist-in-residence at La MaMa. In addition to his work as Artistic Director of Pioneers Go East Collective, Gian Marco is Curator of Sound Departures at La MaMa and Coordinator of La MaMa Moves. Gian Marco's directing and design work has presented at La MaMa, Dixon Place, Galapagos, HERE, and NYTW, among others. He has designed for Pan Asian Rep, Magis Co, Watson Arts, Operating Theatre, Slant, May Adrales, Ernest Abuba, Alvin Eng, Kevin Augustine, Kim Ima and Ellen Stewart. Gian Marco is in residence with Great Jones Rep and has designed at Biennale di Venezia and toured in Europe. Awards: NYSCA (2017 & 2018), LMCC ('11 -'14, '17), Process Space Residency/ Governors Island, Incubator Arts Project Residency ('13 & '14), The Puffin Foundation ('12, '14, '16), St. Ann's Warehouse (2013-14), Chashama Residency ('12), Goethe Institut ('13), Opera America - Director & Design Award ('10). MFA NYU ('09).

Daniel Diaz is a NYC based Queer performer and writer. Daniel creates works from a queer black male perspective to inform audiences and bring clarity on social-political injustices. Daniel joined Pioneers Go East Collective in 2013. With a focus on modern street and interpretive dance, his career consists of movement and choreography for several influential New York musicians including Shadow Lover,Omega Jarden and more. Daniel Has performed at major local venues including PS1 Moma, The Brooklyn Museum, The Coney Island Sideshow, Joe's Pub, Dixon Place, Triskelion Arts and most recently at La Mama etc. As well as various nightlife spots up and down the east coast. Daniel's passion has drawn him to aspects beyond dance including performance art and set design branding him a "Creature of the Stage".

Pioneers Go East Collective explores LGBTQ and feminist stories that merge storytelling and video documentary of real events. In residence at La MaMa since 2010, the collective is led by queer artists and LGBTQ advocates including Gian Marco Lo Forte, Daniel Diaz, Julia Dobner-Pereira, and Philip Trevino. The collective explores stories that are not usually investigated and which reflect sociopolitical vulnerabilities and otherness. Inspired by Walt Whitman's poem "Pioneers! O Pioneers!", these 'pioneers' set out to find a brighter future and record memories of collective and individual vulnerability and resilience through emotionally charged yet accessible performances.

La MaMa is dedicated to the artist and all aspects of the theatre. The organization has a worldwide reputation for producing daring performance works that defy form and transcend barriers of ethnic and cultural identity. Founded in 1961 by award-winning theatre pioneer Ellen Stewart, La MaMa has presented more than 5,000 productions by 150,000 artists from more than 70 nations. A recipient of more than 30 Obie Awards and dozens of Drama Desk, Bessie, and Villager Awards, La MaMa has helped launch the careers of countless artists, many of whom have made important contributions to American and international arts milieus. La MaMa's 56th season highlights artists of different generations, gender identities, and cultural backgrounds, who question social mores and confront stereotypes, corruption, bigotry, racism, and xenophobia in their work. Our stages embrace diversity in every form and present artists that persevere with bold self-expression despite social, economic, and political struggle and the 56th season reflects the urgency of reaffirming human interconnectedness.

GEMINI STARS / SCORPIO STARS runs December 7 - 17, Thursday - Saturday at 7pm and Sunday at 2pm. Running time is 80 minutes. La MaMa is located at 66 East 4th Street, between Second Avenue and Bowery - closest train is the F at Second Avenue. Tickets are $25 general admission or $20 for students and seniors + $1 facility fee. La MaMa also has a 10 for $10 ticketing initiative with ten $10 tickets available for every performance (advance purchase only). Tickets may be purchased at the door one hour prior to curtain. To purchase tickets, call 212-352-3101 or visit