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The Idiopathic Ridiculopathy Consortium Presents INTO THE ABSURD

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Into the Absurd: A Virtually Existential Dinner Conversation takes place Saturdays at 5:00 pm on Zoom and Facebook Live!

The Idiopathic Ridiculopathy Consortium Presents INTO THE ABSURD

The passions and purpose of creators in the community and around the country are the centerpiece of weekly virtual conversations on Into the Absurd: A Virtually Existential Dinner Conversation presented every Saturday at 5 pm on Zoom and Facebook Live by The Idiopathic Ridiculopathy Consortium, the Philadelphia-based theater company whose mission is to present existentialist and absurdist theater to audiences in the region. The series began in June 2020 and will continue each week.

by IRC Producing Artistic Director Tina Brock, A Virtual Dinner Conversation illuminates the creators around the country and their reflections about life during existentially challenging times. For the last 16 years, the IRC has been interpreting the writing of Samuel Beckett, Eugene Ionesco, Franz Kafka and the many existentialist and absurdist writers grappling with the question of purpose and place in the world. Whether the stage setting is a village of twenty or two tramps under a nearly bare tree, the drama of bearing witness through story sets the stage to light up the imagination, sharing strength to continue in challenging times.

Each Saturday at 5:00 pm they gather with guests for 50 minutes, audiences are encouraged to bring a beverage, their curiosity and questions. There are three options to join in: by signing up for the IRC's email list on the IRC website at www.idiopathicridiculopathyconsortium.org where audience members receive a Zoom link and email each detailing the guest for the upcoming week; by streaming on Facebook Live at the IRC's Facebook page @IdiopathicRidiculopathyConsortium @ 5 pm, or by visiting anytime the IRC's YouTube channel, where past conversations are archived at https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCc7NYk0ZSkujKEwq1jvz78w.

October/November 2020 guests include:

Saturday, October 24 - Nicole Taylor, author of A Joyful Pause: 52 Ways to Love Life

Saturday, October 31 - Idiopathic Halloween Reunion featuring Trick or Treat Stories with John Zak, Sonja Robson, Jane Moore, Tomas Dura, Jenna Kuerzi and John Rosenberg

Saturday, November 7 - William Crow, Director and Professor of Practice, Art, Architecture, and Design, Lehigh University

Saturday, November 14 - Lane Savadove, Artistic Director of EgoPo Classic Theater

Saturday, November 21 - John Heon and David McKnight, Co-Directors, Philadelphia Avant-Garde Studies Consortium (PASC)

Saturday, November 28 - Josh Blakesley, M. Div, Founder, The Welcome Project, PA

A Virtual Dinner Conversation is the next step in the Into the Absurd trajectory which began with the IRC's live theater precursor titled Into the Absurd: Readings and Conversation @ L'Etage Cabaret launched in April 2016.

The reading series featured Edward Albee's work The American Dream; The Witnesses by Tadeusz Rozewicz; The Radio Plays of Samuel Beckett and Harold Pinter, and Tennessee Williams' A Lovely Sunday for Creve Coeur. Into the Absurd was developed in response to audience requests for more opportunities to experience seldom-performed classic and modern works from this genre. A post-reading unstructured conversation offered an opportunity for exchange of ideas and inquiry. Into the Absurd gathered live during seasons 2016-2017, where the IRC presented its first production at the 2006 Philadelphia Fringe Festival.

In an introduction to Absurd Drama (1965) Martin Esslin writes, "The Theatre of the Absurd attacks the comfortable certainties of religious or political orthodoxy. It aims to bring (the audience) face to face with the harsh facts of the human situation as these writers see it. But the challenge behind this message is anything but one of despair. It is a challenge to accept the human condition as it is, in all its mystery and absurdity, and to bear it with dignity, nobly, responsibly; precisely because there are no easy solutions to the mysteries of existence, because ultimately man is alone in a meaningless world. The shedding of easy solutions, of comforting illusions, may be painful, but it leaves behind it a sense of freedom and relief. And that is why, in the last resort, the Theatre of the Absurd does not provoke tears of despair but the laughter of liberation.


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