New Paradise Laboratories Present 'Extremely Public Displays of Privacy,' Closess

Audiences are encouraged to stray outside the usual boundaries of theatre art in Extremely Public Displays of Privacy, a three-part performance experience from New Paradise Laboratories. The interactive cross-media, music and theatre piece begins online on September 2 as part of the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival, then travels through Center City Philadelphia and concludes with a live show as part of the Philly Fringe in September. It then continues to play through October 1.

Audiences will delve deeply into the evolving relationship between Fess Elliot - mother, schoolteacher and undiscovered singer/songwriter, and Beatrix Luff (Bea) - performance artist, "cool hunter," and mysterious entrepreneur - as they meet online. First, Bea sweeps Fess off her feet and into a surreal game of escalating public dares; then Fess begins to question who Bea really is and just how public she wants her life to be.

The boundary-crossing, award-winning director Whit MacLaughlin tempts the adventurous theatregoer to engage with the work in new ways by merging the virtual and real worlds through the three very different acts. "Act 1 begins in the Internet," says MacLaughlin. "Then Acts 2 and 3 get you up and out of your chair - keyboard-tapping fingers go on holiday - and you investigate the physical world as you might the digital world. We're aggressively exploring the web as a performance space," he continues. "Can the web be a place where art happens, not just where you find out about it? We are making a piece not about the Internet - but inside the Internet. "

New Paradise Laboratories began to explore the world of online relationships and social media in the groundbreaking 2009 Live Arts Festival show, Fatebook, in which 13 young actors assumed fictional identities and formed relationships on Facebook, culminating in a live show. Other Live Arts Festival shows include FREEDOM CLUB (2010), BATCH: An American Bachelor/ette Party Spectacle (2007) and Planetary Enzyme Blues (2005). Philadelphia Magazine has called NPL's work "completely original... funny, and, most importantly, wildly entertaining."

Act 1, Extremely Public
Extremely Public Displays of Privacy begins on the Internet at ExtremelyPublicDisplays.com (beginning September 2). Beatrix and Fess meet online, inside Chatroulette which pairs people randomly. In the Extremely Public Act 1, audiences can log in from anywhere at any time to spy on this developing relationship and discover the story as it unfolds - at the Extremely Public Displays website, on Facebook and in other sites. This customizable, voyeuristic experience exploits the anonymous but intimate character of the Internet as Bea begins her bold and brazen manipulation of Fess.

Schedule, September 2 - October 1: Extremely Public Displays of Privacy begins online September 2 with Act 1: Extremely Public. Act 1 is produced as part of the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival and will be available continuously, for free, as new content is created and added.

Act 2, Displays
Act 2, Displays journeys offline and into the streets of Philadelphia as Beatrix sweeps Fess off her feet into a surreal game of escalating public dares. Audiences can download the free app or reserve an iPod to take a free walking tour in Fess's shoes. Displays beckons voyeurs to slip inside the relationship between the two women and feel the intimate thrill of discovery as Bea moves Fess through the Rittenhouse Square commercial district - around corners, past restaurants and shops, and into alleys.

Schedule & Reservations, September 9 - October 1: Act 2: Displays is a self-scheduled, self-guided walking tour and is available free as a downloaded app in the iTunes store or by reserving an iPod through New Paradise Laboratories beginning September 9. For those in need of an iPod, reservations can be made between the hours of 5:00 and 8:00 p.m., September 9-11, 13-17, 19-24, and September 28-October 1. iPod reservations can be made through brownppertickets.com or by calling (215) 923-0334.

Act 3, Privacy
Displays rockets to a jarring conclusion when the secret performance location is revealed and online fantasies collide with physical realities in Privacy, the third and final act. Fess begins to question who Beatrix really is and just how public she wants her life to be. She offers her captivated followers an extremely private performance - part concert, part public revelation. For Act 3: Privacy, audience members will gather at the intersection of 17th and Sansom Streets in Center City, Philadelphia. The exact location of the performance venue will be revealed to ticket buyers at the time of attendance. Acts 2 and 3 are produced as part of the Philly Fringe.

Schedule & Tickets, September 14 - October 1:
Tickets for Act 3: Privacy can be purchased in advance for $15 - $20 at brownpapertickets.com or by calling (215) 923-0334. Service fees apply to online orders.

Act 3 Performances
Preview Wednesday, September 14, 9:00 p.m. ($15)
Preview Thursday, September 15, 9:00 p.m. ($15)
Press Opening Friday, September 16, 9:00 p.m. ($15)
Saturday, September 17, 7:00 p.m. ($15)
Saturday, September 17, 9:00 p.m. ($15)
Monday, September 19, 9:00 p.m. ($20)
Tuesday, September 20, 9:00 p.m. ($20)
Wednesday, September 21, 9:00 p.m. ($20)
Thursday, September 22, 9:00 p.m. ($20)
Friday, September 23, 7:00 p.m. ($20)
Friday, September 23, 9:00 p.m. ($20)
Saturday, September 24, 7:00 p.m. ($20)
Saturday, September 24, 9:00 p.m. ($20)
Wednesday, September 28, 9:00 p.m. ($20)
Thursday, September 29, 9:00 p.m. ($20)
Friday, September 30, 7:00 p.m. ($20)
Friday, September 30, 9:00 p.m. ($20)
Saturday, October 1, 7:00 p.m. ($20)
Closing Saturday, October 1, 9:00 p.m. ($20)

Tickets for performances September 14 - 17 may also be purchased through the Live Arts Festival & Philly Fringe Box Office at (215) 413-1318 or www.livearts-fringe.org.

 

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