The 5th annual Berkshire Fringe schedule features 6 theatre, dance, and music productions created by emerging artists from as far away as Minneapolis, MN and as nearby as Great Barrington, MA, which is where the 3 week festival will be staged, from July 27 – August 17, in the Daniel Arts Center on the campus of Simon’s Rock.
The festival also includes :30 Live!, a free music series; EarlyStages, a showcase of new plays by emerging local writers; and numerous other special events including post-show artist discussions, free community workshops and a world-premiere staged reading of Hurricane Hotel by Berkshire-based novelist and artist John K. Lawson.
Since 2005, Bazaar Productions/The Berkshire Fringe has hosted more than 150 emerging artists including theater companies, dance ensembles and music groups from across the country and around the corner. Hailed as the ‘enfant terrible’ of Berkshire theater by the New York Times, this unconventional organization will once again present a diverse cross-section of original, high-quality, inter-disciplinary theater, dance and music—all at affordable prices.
New in 2009 is $ Pick Your Own Price Opening Nights! Make us an offer we can’t refuse or pay what you can for each of the six opening night performances throughout the festival. The season lineup is as follows:
5th ANNUAL GALA EXTRAVAGANZA – SCORED!
Launching the 2009 season is Scored!, Bazaar Productions’ and The Berkshire Fringe’s 5th Annual Gala extravaganza. From one impetus come many stories. Exploring artistic innovation and collaboration across disciplines, Scored! presents a mini-marathon of dance, animation, film and visual art presentations inspired by an identical, six-minute soundscape composed by Fringe co-artistic director, Peter Wise.
The event celebrates the rich and varied approaches taken towards the creation of original work and features world-premiere presentations by playwright Joan Ackermann, animation artist Tyler Kinney, Spine Dance Company, Bazaar Productions Ensemble Theater, filmmaker Larry Burke and more! In addition to highlighting the work of dozens of Berkshire-based artists, the celebration also includes live video mixing, DJ and dance party, an open bar, delicious ‘score’ d’oeuvres, a paparazzi photobooth and a massive not-so-silent auction MC’d by Fringe favorite, Lounge-ZILLA! (aka Fiely A. Matias). Mon 7/27 doors open at 7pm. Premium and pay your age tickets are available.
MAIN STAGE PRODUCTIONS
THE GAY AGENDA’S GREAT BIG BROADWAY SHOW!
Written and Performed by Micah Bucey and Nicolas Williams
Have you ever laughed so hard for so long that your face hurt? Because that’s what will happen at The Gay Agenda’s Great Big Broadway Show. Micah and Nicolas have been locked in their basement by their homophobic dad for years. Fed only cookies and original cast recordings, they have created mini-musicals that turn the Great White Way on its head. Their mission is simple: Complete and utter world domination through SHOWTUNES. Come. Listen. Be offended. Songs have never dripped with such innocent sass and biting satire. You’ll laugh yourself gay! Wed 7/29 8pm (Post Show Discussion), Thurs 7/30 9pm, Fri 7/31 7pm, Sat 8/1 9pm and Sun 8/2 6pm
THE DISAPPEARING WOMAN
Created and Choreographed by media artist Nell Bryer and dancers Alissa Cardone, Lorraine Chapman
and Bronwen MacArthur
Like the classic conjuring act in which a woman on stage is concealed and then revealed again, so are the dancer’s bodies in The Disappearing Woman. Using gestures inspired by classic imagery juxtaposed against movements invoking the female condition today, the three virtuosic dancers explore how technology folds around us squeezing our interactions into new kinds of abbreviated exchanges. Digital skins at times blur and stifle and at other times accentuate and amplify the woman and their movements. Media becomes an enveloping, inescapable part of the body itself. Thu 7/30 7pm, Fri 7/31 9pm, Sat 8/1 7pm, Sun 8/2 8pm, Mon 8/3 8pm (Post Show Discussion).
Written and performed by Amy Salloway
The Ghosts of Gym Teachers Past haunt the Fear of Fitness Centers Present and the Obsession with Weight Loss Future in this new, mostly-true solo comedy about size, sweat and exercising… your demons. Circumference is largely based on the year Salloway spent trying to get insurance approval for gastric bypass surgery. Flashbacks take us to her 7th grade gym class where she flunks her Presidential Physical Fitness Test worse than anyone in the history of Cheese Creek Junior High and where Amy is forced into constant, daily interactions with the uncooperative body she insists she long ago “got a divorce from.” Wed 8/5 8pm (Post show discussion), Thu 8/6 9pm, Fri 8/7 7pm, Sat 8/8 9pm, Sun 8/9 6pm
ELEPHANTS AND GOLD
Created by Eliza Ladd and Little Big Tree Productions
Inspired by the New York Times Magazine article Are We Driving Elephants Crazy? Elephants and Gold is an ensemble driven physical theater piece that drags, digs, buries, crawls and plunges into an archeological excavation of human identity. The cast blends song, movement and dreamlike vignettes to chronicle human migration, ritual and inter-species dynamics. The performers transform into early humans, elephants, Victorian explorers, lost men and poachers, within a landscape of metal buckets, heavy stones, iron hooks and strands of rope. Elephants and Gold reveals both the ancient and contemporary relationships between elephants and humans and questions our evolutionary and cultural stories. Thu 8/6 7pm, Fri 8/7 9pm, Sat 8/8 7pm, Sun 8/9 8pm, Mon 8/10 8pm (post show discussion)
PHI ALPHA GAMMA
Written and Performed by Dan Bernitt
The Lamda Award nominated Phi Alpha Gamma is a haunting portrait of brotherhood, masculinity, love and fear embedded in American culture. Two years after two young men perpetrate a gay-bashing that scars their fraternity’s reputation, another member of the fraternity comes out of the closet. Phi Alpha Gamma focuses a compassionate eye on young men searching for a deeper connection with each other. The story weaves together the voices of four fraternity brothers as they each grapple with the remnants of the hate crime and this new revelation. Wed 8/12 8pm (Post Show Discussion), Thu 8/13 9pm, Fri 8/14 7pm, Sat 8/15 9pm, Sun 8/16 7pm
Written by Gabriel Patel, Directed by John Hadden
With themes straight from Greek tragedy and language from the skate park, Graveyard Shift paints an unflinching picture of young, lower-middle class life in rural America. Creating a vibrant, poetic and contemporary theater of place, the play chronicles the lives of Alice, a tumultuous, fast talking heroine, and Murdoch, a troubled late night convenience store clerk. Amidst the backdrop of youthful angst and harrowing family drama, the two strike up an unlikely friendship that awakens a deep current of love and mutual respect. This world premiere by Berkshire-based writer Gabriel W. Patel features an ensemble of local performers under the direction of John L. Hadden. Contains strong language and adult themes. Thu 8/13 7pm, Fri 8/14 9pm, Sat 8/15 7pm, Sun 8/16 9pm, Mon 8/17 8pm (Post Show Discussion)
SPECIAL STAGED READING EVENT – HURRICANE HOTEL
By John Lawson, directed by Aimee Michel
In an eclectic love letter to the city of New Orleans, Hurricane Hotel grabs a hold and takes us on a ride into the underbelly of a drowned city destined to be reborn. Adapted from the novel by Berkshire-based artist and author John K. Lawson, this world-premiere staged reading is directed by Aimee K. Michel, and features an original music score by Chris Mariantetti (Fragile, 2008) and an ensemble of local actors. One performance only: Saturday August 9, 2pm.
On Sunday, August 16th at 12, 1:30 and 3pm participants in the EarlyStages playwright mentorship program will present staged readings of new works. This is the culmination of a two-week residency where emerging local writers develop scripts under the guidance of Award winning writer Susan Kim. This event is free and will be followed by a discussion with the artists.
Free music series featuring an eclectic mix of new music, emerging composers and sonic innovators from throughout the North East. Takes Place every Wednesday and Monday at 7pm during the Berkshire Fringe.
All workshops are FREE and take place on Saturdays at 1:30 pm in the Daniel Arts Center. Each workshop is taught by Berkshire Fringe artists and is open to participants of all backgrounds and levels of experience ages 16-96! Space is limited and early registration is strongly recommended. Workshop Schedule is as follows:
Saturday, August 1st
Movement/choreography workshop with acclaimed solo artist and dancer Alissa Cardone from The Disappearing Woman
Saturday, August 8th
Movement Theater workshop focusing on poetry and music with Elephants and Gold creator, Eliza Ladd
Saturday, August 15
Writing for performance with Lambda Award nominated writer of Phi Alpha Gamma, Dan Bernitt.
All performances, events and workshops take place at The Daniel Arts Center, Bard College at Simon’s Rock, 84 Alford Road in Great Barrington, MA. Tickets are $15 to main events, $ Pick your Own Price for all opening night performances. Ask our box office about a Season’s Pass – See all six shows for $69. All workshops, :30 Live! performances and EarlyStages readings are free. For directions, tickets, workshop registration, and all other information please call (413) 320-4175, e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit berkshirefringe.org.
Major support for the 2009 Berkshire Fringe is provided by The Massachusetts Cultural Council and The Katherine J. Dinardo Fund