Unnamed Broadway Musical: The Musical!
April 14 - May 19, 2012
Final performance- Saturday May 19, 2012 at 7 pm (followed by Q & A and reception)
complete photo documentation of rehearsals on flickr
Organized by: Kara Hearn
Directed by: Sarah Cameron Sunde
Video artist, Kara Hearn is mounting a barebones, experimentally cast production that uses an orphan-themed Broadway musical (we have been advised not to name) as its point of departure. Inspired by the experience of watching or listening to orphan-themed musicals as a child and projecting oneself into the starring role, the project is designed to serve a group of adults who never had the chance to fulfill this dream on stage. The casting of each part was based more on the willingness and need of the performers than on singing, dancing ability, or appearance.
Under the direction of Sarah Cameron Sunde in collaboration with choreographer Pia Monique Murray and composer Christopher Berg, the team will have the absurd task, that is, the creative challenge of generating a new musical that fulfills the performers' sincere desire to be in a famous orphan musical without them actually being in one of the famous orphan musicals.
The 8 cast members were drawn to the project for a variety of reasons. Doug had an audition to be in Oliver when he was 11 but backed out at the last minute from stage fright. Angela is an adoptee and an orphan who has a complicated relationship with orphan-themed musicals. Katherine was consistently overlooked for starring roles because of her race. Brian is a performer who loves musicals but who doesn’t sing well. Michael was drawn to performing arts as a child but was steered by his parents into an engineering high school instead. This is his first time performing.
This impractical project is taking place over 5 weeks at EFA Project Space in Manhattan. The project will exist as an ongoing live performance (rehearsals are open to the public) and in its final form as a 30 to 45 minute video documenting the process of putting on the production, from auditions to opening night. There is a final performance on May 19 at 7pm.
Unnamed Broadway Musical: The Musical! is the second project to join EFA Project Space's Artist/Organizer Series. This series provides the use of EFA Project Space in between exhibitions to highlight the activities of Artist/Organizers -- pivotal artists who, through the act of organizing, are compelled to readdress and refresh the framework through which we use artistic expression to build community.
Schedule of Events
Auditions and all rehearsals are open to the public!
Saturday, April 14, 12-6pm
Monday, April 16, 6-10pm
Thursday, April 19, 6-9pm
Friday, April 20, 6-10pm
Saturday, April 21, 12-6pm
Monday, April 23, 6-10pm
Thursday, April 26, 6-10pm
Monday, April 30, 6-10pm
Saturday, May 5, 12-6pm
Thursday, May 10, 6-10pm
Friday, May 11, 6-10pm
Saturday, May 12, 11am-4pm
Monday, May 14, 6-10pm
Thursday, May 17, 6-10pm
Friday, May 18, 6-10pm
Saturday, May 19, 12-6pm
Saturday, May 19, 7-9pm
Late July - Screening of the movie, Unnamed Broadway Musical: The Musical! (TBD)
Kara Hearn is an interdisciplinary video artist (sample video). She makes quiet and absurd work about the way tragedies reside in the head; the way heroisms play out in the mind’s eye, the inside place where stories get conjured, dreamed, remembered. Dithering between melodrama and deadpan, her videos degrade mainstream cinema by being too sincere, too simple, telling too many stories with very little stuff. Hearn’s work has been screened and exhibited nationally and internationally at such venues as DiverseWorks, White Columns, The Luckman Gallery, Pacific Film Archive, New Langton Arts, Southern Exposure, the Walker Art Center, Dallas Video Festival, Women in the Directors Chair International Film and Video Festival, and the Festival Tous Courts International Festival of Cinema. She received an MFA from the University of California at Berkeley in 2007, was a Core Fellow at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston from 2007-09, and completed a residency at Recess Activities Inc. in New York City in 2010.
Sarah Cameron Sunde is a New York based theater director who collaboratively creates interdisciplinary performances for the stage and beyond. She started directing while living in England in 1997 and was influenced by European traditions of expressionism and devising theater. She has directed several U.S. debut productions of plays by contemporary international master playwrights: THE ASPHALT KISS by Brazil’s Nelson Rodrigues, and her own translations of NIGHT SINGS ITS SONGS, DEATHVARIATIONS, and SA KA LA by Norway’s major contemporary playwright, Jon Fosse – who considers her “his American voice.” World premiere directing credits include productions at 3LD Art & Technology Center (THE DIARY OF A TEENAGE GIRL), The Guthrie Studio (WHAT MAY FALL), Rattlestick Playwrights Theater (THE AMISH PROJECT), and New Georges (GOOD HEIF) – one of NYC’s premiere downtown theater companies where she has been on staff since 2001. Sunde is also Co-Artistic Director of Oslo Elsewhere, a published translator, and an active advocate for the art of translation. Honors include: American Scandinavian Society Artist Award, Hermitage Foundation Residency, a NYtheatre.com Person-of-the-Year Award, and a Princess Grace Award.
Christopher Berg is a composer, pianist, music director and theater artist. Reviewing a recording of his Songs on Poems of Frank O'Hara, the American Record Guide said, "On the evidence of these songs, Berg may be an American Hugo Wolf." Steven Blier, Artistic Director of the New York Festival of Song, has written, "Just as Poulenc illuminated the poetry of Apollinaire and Eluard, Chris Berg clarifies O'Hara. He musicalizes O'Hara's words with an expert sense of timing, a perfect balance of recitative and tunefulness and a dry sense of humor. In this subtle blend of music, words, and silence, he locates the poem's furtive sensuality." New recordings of several of his song cycles featuring singers David Krohn, Lauren Snouffer, and Vera Slywotzky, will be released in 2012. Among his other composing credits are a musical, Back Home, produced at the New York Music Theater Festival 2007, and an opera, Cymbeline, based on Shakespeare's play. As pianist and composer, he has ongoing collaborations with the Mirror Visions Ensemble and Opera on Tap. As an actor/performer, he has appeared with Gorilla Repertory, the ArcLight Theater Company, Holderness, and Keigwin & Co., and currently with the performance group Lydian Junction.
Pia Monique Murray is originally from Brooklyn, New York and has been dancing since the age of three. She has trained in ballet, modern, West African and hip-hop dance. While majoring in Dance and African American Studies at Oberlin College, she had the opportunity to work with Dianne McIntyre and perform her choreography with Cleveland Dance Theater and attended the Trinity/LaMama Performing Arts Program in New York City. She studied dance forms of the African Diaspora with Adenike Sharpley, leading the troupe Dance Diaspora as dance captian. Pia travelled to the Gambia, West Africa to learn Guinean traditional dance with Alasane Sumak of Fatala African Ballet. She is currently studying traditional Ivorian dance with Vado Diomande and performing with his group Kotchegna Dance Company.
Pia’s choreography has been performed at Dixon Place and LaMama ETC among other New York venues. She currently performs with alongside emerging pop artist Tecla Esposito and with Rakia Seaborn’s RAKIA! Pia engages in dance as a performer, choreographer, administrator, tour manager, teaching artist, and stage manager and is the Founding Artistic Director of the Pia Monique Murray Dance Collective (PMMDC). She has worked with a diverse roster of artists in various capacities: dance companies Urban Bush Women, Doug Elkins & Friends and Vangeline Theater; dancers Nora Chipaumire, Katsura Kan, Blondell Cummings, Paloma McGregor and Souleymane Badolo; and musicians Thomas Mapfumo and the Blacks Unlimited, Courtney Bryan, TECLA, Gordon Voidwell and Kassa Overall.
Beer lovingly provided by Brooklyn Brewery