ALARM by PHYSICAL PLASTIC Theater Project
- Theater Arts
PHYSICAL PLASTIC—aka Yiannis Christofides and Kestrel Leah—is a composer-director partnership rooted in the creation of experimental music theater with a deeply inter-disciplinary approach. On December 10 and 11, we will perform the prologue of our new work Alarm at Disney’s REDCAT Theater in downtown Los Angeles, after a year of development and research with choreographer Brigette Dunn-Korpela and visual artist Dasha Sur, and three months of rehearsals with our dedicated cast of actor-vocalists. We are excited to share publicly, for the first time, our unique approach to sound, movement and theater, and to take a vital step towards Alarm’s full-length premiere in 2018.
We invite your participation. PHYSICAL PLASTIC is fundraising to recoup production costs and support the artists involved, and ensure that the work continues into next year. Historically, work like ours is made possible by patron sponsorship. By choosing the work you support, you become curators—you directly influence the work that gets made and become part of the social dialogue it creates. You join entities like The Watermill Center and New Music USA, who have been instrumental in supporting early stages of Alarm’s development. We acknowledge your participation as a creative action, and would like to tell you why this project is so important to us.
We conceived Alarm while living in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn, where nightly we experienced a security alarm from a nearby building. Its violent disruption and the physical response it created inspired our initial exploration of the sonic character of alarms. Since, Alarm has become for us a questioning of boundaries, ownership and power as observed both locally and globally: Alarmperforms ideas of need, limit and transgression (i.e. stealing or trespassing) in the context of our capitalist society and its ongoing crises. Once an alarm sounds, the divisions between self and other, between public and private, between “have” and “have not”, previously hidden in the background, are revealed, as are the networks and infrastructures protecting those boundaries. We portray the alarm as a rupture—an event which signals the current state of affairs, and in doing so, provokes the question of a new social order.
A full-length choral score using silence and its disruption, will be staged with the choreographed ensemble portraying trespasser, bystander, and the alarm—while Christofides’ compositions transport us to the mythical world of the Sirens who tempt transgression yet punish our primal desires. The work is lead by Christofides and director Leah along with choreographer Dunn Korpela and visual artist Sur, layering vigorous movement with extended vocal textures, and the visual strategies of Sur, video artist Hsuan-Kuang Hsieh and costume designer David Moyer.
We have researched, discussed, debated, experimented, and trained hard together. Now we need you. To continue, we must raise a minimum of $5,672 by December 31, 2017. Your donations will go directly towards: modest honorariums for the artists who have generously given so many hours of hard work ($6,120); travel to Los Angeles for our long-distance collaborators ($367); rehearsal rentals ($1,677); studio recording fees ($150); and design materials ($958). With this support, we can look to full funding and presentation of the full-length premiere in 2018. Any donations beyond our minimum goal will set us on that road, helping secure rehearsal space for the spring and allowing us to begin working with a professional vocal ensemble who will perform Christofides’ compositions from the orchestra pit.
It’s been a great year for PHYSICAL PLASTIC and we cannot thank you enough for your support. If you cannot donate, you can still help the work get made by sharing our trailer. See you in December!
Love, PHYSICAL PLASTIC
Composer: Yiannis Christofides
Choreographer: Brigette Dunn-Korpela
Director: Kestrel Leah
Visual Concept: Dasha Sur
Video Design: Hsuan-Kuang Hsieh
Costume Design: David Moyer
Lighting Design: Katelan Braymer
Sound Engineering: Martin Gimenez
ENSEMBLE: Bailey Edwards, Marguerite French, Craig Gibson, Lisa McNeeley, Anthony Nikolchev, Nathan Nonhof, Sadie Schwolsky, Jenapher Zheng