This week, New York University's Program in Educational Theatre will host The Forum on Site-Specific Performance, which includes a series of curated performances throughout Washington Square Park and adjacent neighborhoods. The forum will also feature a commissioned work, HALL PASS, from Blake McCarty (Creator and Co-Producer of last summer's Play/Date) which will premiere at Grace Church School in a production directed by Sabrina Jacob.
HALL PASS, a site-specific and immersive event performed by young actors, offers audiences unusual perspectives on the trials, tribulations, and joys of life as a teenager; HALL PASS features ten new short plays and musicals by: Elizabeth Irwin (2015 John Gassner Award Nominee, Outer Critics Circle); Chad Beckim (Lights Rise On Grace, Woolly Mammoth); Joe Salvatore (Outstanding Play, 2008 NYFringe); and David Dabbon and Gabriel Jason Dean(The Mysteries, The Flea) as well as Elle Anhorn; Willa Bassen & Nick Robertson; Melissa Gawlowski; Emily Kaczmarek; Jonathan Mastro; and Zoe Sarnak. Multiple plays occur simultaneously, allowing audience members to choose their own adventure -- making decisions about who to watch and which characters to follow. For more information and to reserve tickets for HALL PASS, visit www.bit.ly/nyuhallpass.
The University will also present the song cycle, UNDERGROUND: AN UNAUTHORIZED BEN FOLDS JAM SESSION, directed by Jonathan Zautner, playing Friday through Sunday. In flashbacks, dreams, movement, and music, this production uses the music of Ben Folds to weave a story of self-discovery, encouraging everyone to "learn to live with what you are." Forum participants reserve space for this event upon registration. Use code NYUCONF2015 for discounted rate.
Events kickoff on Thursday evening, with a presentation by Erin B. Mee, Co-Founder of This Is Not A Theatre Company, featuring their new work Ferry Play. Friday will include panels featuring Tom Pearson and Jennine Willet (Artistic Directors, Third Rail Projects); Michael Counts (Creative Director, 3-Legged Dog); Jeffrey Carpenter (Artistic Director, Bricolage Production Company); Alexa Kelly (Artistic Director, Pulse Ensemble Theatre); and Eric Wallach(Flight 18). In addition, artists from Accomplice, Trusty Sidekick Theatre Company, Spellbound Theatre, Double Image Theater Lab, and creative team members from Kerrigan & Lowdermilk's The Bad Years will facilitate master classes for attendees.
The program -- featuring music, visual art, theatre, and dance -- has been curated by Dr. Amy Cordileone to explore the increasingly blurred lines between spectator and space, performer and patron. Through participation in such encounters, students, stakeholders, and artists have the potential to unlock new understandings of the stories imprinted in their surroundings.
The forum will also include presentations by Community-Word Project and NYU's Shakespeare-to-Go, as well as a daylong festival of new works in development on Saturday, April 25th, which include:
A NICE GUY DOING GOOD THINGS Conceived by Three Guys Theatre Company
Characters are celebrated, scenes are meaningful, and earnestness trumps cleverness in this experiment in solo improvisation that strives, above all else, to just be nice.
AN INVITATION Conceived & Directed by Elena Stephenson Campbell
With abstractions, invisible theatre, music, and movement, this experiential journey explores social media, tourism, and the millennial generation.
BACK Written by Megan Ibarra & Directed by Shanae Sharon
Jason returns suddenly after taking a year to recover from his tours of duty overseas. Melanie was left with his five-year old daughter and struggles to understand his disappearance.
GA(Y)ZE Conceived & Created by Joe Salvatore & Troy Hourie
A non-verbal narrative investigating "busking" traditions and gay male "cruising" in the early 1900s compared to today. 14th Street east of Union Square was once the theatre district and a center of gay culture. Now it will be a performance space, using vernacular jazz and social dance of the 1920s to tell the story of this subculture past and present.
SKYPE HEARTBREAK Conceived by Pierre Depaz, Ansh Patel, Tommy Payne, & Pat Shiu
Audiences are both spectators and actors in this digital love story, an interactive installation exploring the decay of a long-distance, romantic relationship through unreliable technology.
STIMULUS Conceived by Uproar Theatre Corps
Via verbatim theatre, immersive theatre, devised processes, and music, this piece explores what it means to be an artist and New Yorker in an art-centric environment.
THE SORRY PLAY Written by Chelsea Hackett & Directed by Andrew Coopman
What if there was way you could ensure that you always got your apology? This play investigates what happens when petty offenses are brought to a government body, and how it feels when one young women gets the "sorry" she is desperate to have.
THROUGH THE GLASS Conceived & Directed by Catherine Talton
In a montage of interview and devised theatre on the experiences of women of color with the glass ceiling, audiences travel from the lobby to the top floor -- a physical metaphor of the corporate ladder and intrinsic barriers facing professional women.
TO THE SÉANCE Written & Directed by Katelyn Miller
A man in a jumpsuit, a girl with a backpack, and an ice cream salesperson meet in a graveyard at midnight. The punch line basically writes itself.
UNDER CONSTRUCTION Conceived by Spellbound Theatre & Double Image Theatre Lab
A multi-generational audience will join storytellers on an art-making and community-building adventure through a New York neighborhood going through a lot of change.
For a full schedule of events and to register for the conference, go to www.bit.ly/nyusspforum.