Among this week’s streaming selections are a newly commissioned puppet show and a cautionary butoh dance piece, both with significant themes related to the annual commemoration of Earth Day.
MINE – As part of its Spring 2021 season of puppetry commissions, Dixon Place presents Brooklyn-based Shayna Strype’s eco-feminist tragi-comedy exploring our relationship with our stuff, our earth, and ourselves. The original 50-minute solo show, which is “Rated E for Everyone,” creatively combines a variety of puppetry styles with live-feed projections, stop-motion animation, live green-screen, wearable sculptures, and miniatures, to spin the story of a collapsed mountain mine, the grieving former home of a family broken by divorce, and a groundhog’s subterranean hoard of their discarded mementos.
As the Rubble, the Home, and the Groundhog attempt to reassemble the remnants of their crumbled histories, their worlds begin to intertwine and Strype weaves together themes of nostalgia, excess, and the destructive human urge to colonize land, bodies, and minds. Produced by Ruth Lichtman, MINE features a production design by Nehprii Amenii, projection design by Britt Mosely, lighting by Paige Seber, camera live-feed by Desiree Mitton, and music by Jordan John Parker, with Caren Celine Morris serving as stage manager.
You can get a sneak peek at the show here:
The work will be performed live for virtual audiences from April 21-24, at 7:30 pm. Following the live performances, video on demand streaming will be available April 26-May 3, 2021. For tickets, priced at $10.50-$35, go online.
Wake Up and Smell the Coffee – In honor of Earth Day, Vangeline Theater (dedicated to the Japanese postwar avant-garde movement form of butoh and socially conscious activism) will livestream archival footage of a 60-minute dance piece originally performed on April 22, 2017, at Triskelion Arts. A family-friendly cautionary tale about an issue directly linked to the threat of global warming, the work considers the serious environmental repercussions of non-recyclable waste, as the performers dance through a set composed of 1500 disposable and unsalvageable coffee cups, to illustrate the problem generated by our society (Americans are responsible for a staggering 58% of the paper cup usage in the world).
The style combines the intensity of butoh with an accessible fairytale narrative based in European traditions, while employing humor, satire, and whimsy to deliver the serious message of over-consumption. Conceived, choreographed, and directed by Vangeline (dancer, choreographer, teacher, and founding artistic director of the company), the piece is performed by dancers Azumi Oe, Leah Marie Beltran, Maki Shinagawa, Margherita Tisato, Maddy Sher, Sindy Butz, and Stacy Lynn Smith, along with Vangeline.
For a preview, watch the trailer below:
The free program will premiere on Thursday, April 22, at 8 pm, and will stream through Saturday, April 24; to view, go online. For audiences in other time zones, the video will also be available from April 25-30, on Vimeo.