Sunday, December 24, 2006

RED CANS at First Night?

It could be a rumor. They're not part of the official program. All we know is that a friend of ours spotted one of the nasties around 8th and Congress this week. She was coming home from a bar and saw it crouched in the shadows hoarding two pairs of black pumps and a slice of pizza. Abandoned by the pack or scouting out new terrain? It's hard to say, but knowing how these not-so-beloved creatures have left many a wrecked festival in their path, you may want to lace up those sneakers extra snug before heading downtown. Just a thought.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

A Orgie of the Multiple Orgasmen.


As you may know, our next show is (keep your "rights pending" fingers crossed) Wallace Shawn's scandalous A Thought in Three Parts. This is a play that was written in the early 70's but has never had a proper U.S. production. The London premiere was raided by a vice-squad and almost shut down by the government. When Rubber Rep met up with Mr. Shawn in New York and asked about staging the play in Austin, he gleefully responded, "If you want to do A Thought in Three Parts, you'd be a pioneer my good man!"

Just for fun, we took a synopsis of the play that was written in German and used one of those cheap web programs to translate it into English. Here's a muddled Freudian taste of what to expect:

Obszoen in a youth hostel birds Helen, Judy, Tom, Bob and thick indiscriminately around, however, too secondly, too third, a Orgie of the multiple Orgasmen, hectically and witthout obligation, glaringly and. Before David and Sarah, in the first scene, had two Americans in a foreign hotel room only punish and codes talked without doing it, and in the conclusion mono log then Mr. Frivolous at the domestic fruehstueckstisch a erotisches solo one experiences. Two-relations, Gruppensex and Masturbation - Shawn is here more successfully than those subversive, unverklemmte taboo injury: In the core three cheerful melancholische Etueden hide themselves over the love in its text.
Orgasmen indeed.

*************
A Thought in Three Parts
by Wallace Shawn
May 4-26, 2007
The Vortex, 2307 Manor Rd.
Dir. by Carlos Treviño, Matt Hislope, and Josh Meyer
***************

Monday, November 20, 2006

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Mr. Barnes, Meet Mr. Price.


The Statesman's Michael Barnes writes about his experience with Dick's show here. We were quite interested to read his response, as he had the unfortunate luck of attending a show alongside some VERY DRUNK and HIGHLY DISRUPTIVE audience members. During the second half of the show, they violated every possible rule of theatre etiquette, stopping just short of hiking up their skirts and pissing on Dick's bedroom floor. It was as if Dick was performing the show at one of those horrible daiquiri bars on 6th street.

Friday, November 10, 2006

RED CANS at the B. Iden Payne Awards.

They're a little blurry, but it was that kind of night...




Thursday, November 09, 2006

Rubber Rep Crashes a Party, and Feels a Little Weird About It.



There's a truly bizarre plug for At Home With Dick 2 in this week's Chronicle review of The Night Hank Williams Died. Make sure you read to the end. My my. We hope this doesn't put the kibosh on our secret dream to direct Sondheim's Company for Austin Playhouse. "I assure you we had nothing to do with it, Mr. Toner, nothing at all!"

Monday, October 30, 2006

Greetings from the Land of Rubber!

Before we're completely overtaken by the rigors of egg nog season, we thought we'd give you an update of all that is happening here at Rubber Rep HQ.

1) GRANTS AND GREENBACKS. For years, Rubber Rep has funded shows with loose change and a smile. While there's something liberating about being completely self-sufficient, it's stopped us from following some of our more elaborate fantasies (like having sets!). All of this may change soon. Maybe. We hope. You never know. We met with a distinguished representative from the Rockefeller Foundation yesterday. Over orange sodas at Spider House, she told us about their grant programs, we told her about Rubber Rep, and she responded with lots of energy and encouragement. So consider us ENCOURAGED to stand up on our tiptoes and start looking for free monies to pay people what they deserve, work fewer day jobs, and make shows more rubbery than you can possibly imagine. It won't be easy. We need to find a not-for-profit to fiscally sponsor us in this endeavor. And, of course, everyone says that grant applications are NO FUN. If you'd like to help, even if its just through words of wisdom and experience, please email rubberrep@gmail.com.

2) A THOUGHT IN THREE PARTS. Preparations are well underway for the Rubber Rep treatment (and U.S. premiere!) of Wallace Shawn's A Thought in Three Parts. This scandalous little play will be at the Vortex in May. Matt and Josh are directing, hopefully joined by their old friend Mr. Carlos Trevino. According to one critic, A Thought in Three Parts "stands as a permanent challenge to anyone who has the attitude that anything can be revived... the play can now almost not be read." Let us know if you'd like to audition. We've also heard a rumor that Wally himself will be visiting Marfa, TX in March to attend some sort of festival/retrospective being held in his honor. Road trip? Say yes.

3) RED CANS RESURFACE. There have been several red can rumblings in the last week. First, we were flattered to hear that a teaching assistant at the University of Texas devoted ALMOST AN ENTIRE LECTURE PERIOD to describing the show to his class of 350. And even better, we hear it was a GOOD lecture and that the students were actually engaged. Secondly, our cylindrical troublemakers put on some bow ties and caused quite a stir at last night's B. Iden Payne Awards. The show received a special award for outstanding theatrical innovation, and of course those wily cans insisted on receiving it themselves (as well as knocking over a chair or two, disrupting the podium, stealing the shoe of one Buzz Moran, and terrorizing the young hostesses). Pictures soon.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Cats out of Bags



The Dirigo Group talks about their experience with At Home With Dick 2 here.

No use hiding it any longer:
Some people are finding the show to be a bit of an emotional experience. Still plenty of loopy fun, but you never know where an evening spent at home with Dick may lead.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Four Steps to Improving your Vision!



1. Read every word of the Austinist's review of At Home With Dick 2.
2. Follow it up with the Statesman's short review on the same subject.
3. Make an appointment for the show immediately by calling (512) 470-1735 or emailing rubberrep@gmail.com.
4. Check this space weekly for new breakthroughs.

Monday, September 11, 2006

About Dick Price (Unabridged)

We recently asked Dick Price to write a brief bio for the At Home with Dick 2 press release. He provided something a little more detailed than we had in mind, so we're posting it here for you to enjoy in full. Afterwards, hop on over to Dick's website and listen to a clip from the show's opening number.

Monday, September 04, 2006

Sneak Peek: At Home With Dick 2



After almost a year and a half holed away in his apartment, the incomparable Dick Price is all set to unlock his doors for a brand new show. This time around, Dick fixates on his father's battle with Alzheimer's Disease, race relations in Waco, TX, and the healing powers of Jane Austen. To whet your appetite, here are a few of the song titles from At Home With Dick 2.
***************************************

The Shelf Life of Shellfish
Take a Little Turn Around the Room
Shoulda Seen it Coming
The Story of Ereshkigal
Ataxia (A Blessing in Disguise)
Carlsbad
Don't Let Daddy Drive
File Cabinet with a Broken Drawer
Brand New Roof
I Know Precisely the Degree to Which He Bothered Us; Have Not a Clue How Much We Irritated Him
The Incontinental
Four Went Into the Nursing Home
Race Riots!
Virgin of Guadalupe T-Shirt
I Can Get You a Couple of Wetbacks
Harsh Laundering
The John Barry Monster
Laughing our Brain Cells Away
You Shouldn't Have Peed


Opens October 5th!

Friday, September 01, 2006

This Year's Must-Have Toy!


RED CANS Action Figures! Cartoon and breakfast cereal forthcoming.

Monday, August 28, 2006

RED CANS wrapped up




1. A BIG THANKS to the audiences who made this show such a delight to perform. Demand was so high that spectators were standing in the hallway and seated in the light booth. A Rubber Rep first!

2. It was bound to happen sooner or later. On the last night of performances, an audience member (and prominent figure in the theatre community) really didn't want her shoes taken and proceeded to beat the sh$% out of the offending can. No injuries were reported.

3. The costumes were so filthy after the run that they filled our bathtub with a bitter black brew. See the above photo, and be thankful that we can't attach a smell.

4. Even though the show's over, we still dream of Red Cans. Josh writes: "I just had the worst Red Cans nightmare. We're performing at Bass Concert Hall at UT. Or possibly the Paramount. The show is packed. There are even a few celebrities around, mainly icons from my childhood. There's a weird pre-show where Hulk Hogan comes out and throws footballs to the crowd. "Weird Al" Yankovic catches one. I'm amazed that no one is cheering for the Hulkster. It's time for the show to start. The lights slowly fade. When they come back up, the dog in the cage, but also... there's a full youth baseball team posing on the side of the stage. It's like they're proud of their red uniforms and decided they'd be a good addition to the show. Ashley and Amie are crawling around outside of their cans and looking at the team. Dolly's pushing the cage alone. Then Ashley says (in a LOUD stage whisper), "Aren't we supposed to be in our cans?" They put on their cans and help Dolly. No one has a power horn. The king never arrives. 90% of the audience leaves in the first 15 minutes. The rest is blurry. I remember leaping up onstage and going back to the dressing room and exploding with anger and frustration to Matt, talking about killing myself with sleeping pills. The backstage area doubles as an artificial christmas tree warehouse, with thousands of gaudy trees hung from the ceilings."

On to At Home with Dick 2! Stay tuned.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

RED CANS: FINAL WEEKEND!

Reviews, etc. posted here as they are posted elsewhere. Beware of spoilers!

1. The Statesman calls the show, "one engaging and odd little package, full of weird and entertaining images."

2. Tim Thomas of the Loaded Gun Theory says he's "never seen an audience so afraid" and describes how the audience was "literally cowering with their feet in each others laps."

3. The Dirigo Group compares the show to Jim Henson going on "a week-long psilocybin bender with nothing to keep him company but early David Lynch films, E.T., Alien, and 2001."

4. The Austinist only recommends the show to people who are able to "sit through an hour long performance just to enjoy seven or eight moments of clarity."

5. KUT's Arts Eclectic is airing this audio preview of the show August 14-18.

6. The Austin Chronicle says that, "At some point during the show, you are likely to lift up your feet, hide your purse, and secure any other loose possessions – like a roller coaster, only you're at the theatre. Keep all legs and arms inside the play."

more to come!

Monday, August 07, 2006

CONFIRMED: The Rubber Repertory is Illegitimate.

*********************************************************
Now that RED CANS has opened, it seems like a good time to share a correspondence we had a few months ago with the manufacturers of the RED CANS.
*********************************************************

the players...




******************************
------Original Message--------
From: Rubber Repertory [mailto:rubberrep@gmail.com]
Sent: Wednesday, November 23, 2005 5:16 PM
To: Jennifer Huff
Subject: Bongo Bags Live on Stage!

Hello!

My name is Josh Meyer, and I'm an artistic director of the Rubber Repertory Theatre, an award-winning alternative theatre company based in Austin, TX. We're currently developing a family-oriented dance performance entitled RED CANS, and we wanted to see if you would donate 30 Redmon original Bongo Bags (red canvas) to use as props in the show. During early rehearsals, we've found that having dancers walk around while squatting inside Bongo bags creates a very interesting image, and we'd love to explore the possibilities of using a much larger number of Bongos.

Because we operate on an extremely limited budget, any donation you might offer would be greatly appreciated. Aside from the prominent placement of your products on stage, we'd also gladly place an ad for your company in the program of the show, where it would be seen by over one thousand theatregoers of all ages.

Thanks so much for your time,

Josh Meyer
Rubber Repertory Theatre

-----Original Message-----
From: Lori V. Gagnon [mailto:Lori@RedmonUSA.com]
Sent: Monday, November 28, 2005 10:01 AM
To: Jennifer Huff; Peter Redmon; Sam Redmon; Tracy Ingram
Subject: RE: Bongo Bags Live on Stage!

Peter,

Let's do this! First, we must be sure it's legitimate.

Lori

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Lori V. Gagnon
Vice President
Sales and Marketing

-----Original Message-----
From: Peter Redmon
Sent: Monday, November 28, 2005 12:02 PM
To: 'Lori V. Gagnon'
Subject: RE: Bongo Bags Live on Stage!

Dear Mr. Meyer,

No one in Austin seems to know who you are. The Chamber of Commerce could not locate you. The Austin Visitors Bureau knows nothing of you. You are not listed in the business pages or under Theaters in the Yellow Pages. The Texas Attorney General does not show you listed. Are you legitimate?

-----Original Message-----
From: Rubber Repertory [mailto:rubberrep@gmail.com]
Sent: Monday, November 28, 2005 3:16 PM
To: Peter Redmon
Subject: Bongo Bags Live on Stage!

Dear Mr. Redmon,

I certainly understand why you'd be skeptical after contacting those organizations, but I ensure you we're legitimate. We're a small theatre company that has only been producing since 2001, and in a city with as many other arts organizations as Austin, it takes a little while to become well known. Because we're without a permanent space, we often work by collaborating with more-established companies such as Physical Plant Theatre, Salvage Vanguard Theatre, and the Vortex Repertory Company. If you'd like, I'd be more than happy to provide you with references from any of these groups.

In addition, here are links to newspaper articles that feature one of our recent shows, At Home With Dick. The first is a review. The other two are listings of awards for which the show was nominated and/or won.

http://www.austinchronicle.com/issues/dispatch/2005-03-18/arts_review2.html
http://www.austinchronicle.com/issues/dispatch/2005-06-10/arts_feature.html
http://www.austinchronicle.com/issues/dispatch/2005-08-19/arts_feature4.html

Thanks so much for your consideration.

Josh

-----Original Message-----
From: Peter Redmon
Sent: Tuesday, November 29, 2005 12:02 PM
To: 'Lori V. Gagnon'
Subject: RE: Bongo Bags Live on Stage!

Thanks for the additional information, but sorry Josh, we cannot grant your request.

Peter R

Thursday, August 03, 2006

The RED CANS are open...

and a new species of performance is born!

Read the Austin Chronicle article here.

We'll leave this post open for your discussion, comments, critiques, questions, answers, analysis, etcetera.




photo by matt wright

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

One Week until Red Cans Wreckage!

It's one week until showtime, and RED CANS gets better and worse every night. Performers are getting completely lost on stage, running into walls, and constantly knocking each other over. But while this would typically signify a theatrical trainwreck, it seems that RED CANS is different and actually becomes more and more watchable as things go more and more wrong. Short of giving the performers notes to "keep screwing up," we'll be doing all we can to ensure that the off-kilter chaos is in full bloom on August 3rd.

Check out this interview about the show courtesy of our friends at Austinist.


Sunday, July 16, 2006

RED CANS: Read our Bruises #3

Lest we be accused of only exploiting the bruised bodies of our female cast members, here are some choice shots of the truly rough and tumble Andy Smith. Andy informs us that he took these pictures to send to his girlfriend in Australia. While you're enjoying this bit of beefcake, consider these helpful household tips sent in from reader (and Dirigo Group co-artistic director) Ellie McBride:

OMFG! I just saw the pictures. OK....be good to your people and do this. Trust me, I know from whereof I speak in the rehearsal bruises world. Those I've had, those I've inflicted. Got this cure from a director had me looking caned 3 days before a show I had to wear a corset in and I was bruise free opening night.

Get some papaya pulp from whole foods. Get your folks to make smoothies out of it, about a cup per person. Get them to get some for themselves and drink it daily or eat fresh papaya for a few days (but the bottled pulp is cheaper even though it's not cheap.)

Get some Arnica oil. not gel. not cream. Oil.

Get folks to rub in on when they leave. Encourage the more bruised of them to buy there own and put it on before bed. Also not cheap but well worth it. It's about $10 a bottle but the bottle will last.

I promise this will fade the bruises and the pain.





Thursday, July 06, 2006

RED CANS: Read our Bruises #2

3 weeks in, and yet more gore:
NOTE the knuckles of Matt!
LOOK UPON the legs of Rosaruby!
ATTEND TO the arms of Heather and Ashley!

And finally, PRAY for us all as we switch next week to rehearsing on CONCRETE.
Daaaaamn.




Monday, July 03, 2006

RED CANS: One Month until Showtime.







There's no escaping it: RED CANS opens at the Off Center on August 3rd. We're two weeks into rehearsals, cans are ripped, actors are drenched in sweat, the first half of the show is blocked, and a new species of performance is slowly coming to life.

Friday, June 23, 2006

RED CANS: Read our Bruises #1





4 days into rehearsal, and already the cans are taking a vicious toll. While you marvel at the bruises that Ms. Jess Akin has endured, allow us to assure you that our performers are prepared to soldier on through any amount of black, blue, green, and yellow to bring you the most unique performance of the year: RED CANS! August 3-19th at the Off Center.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Like a very bizarre dream...




Stay tuned to this blog for racy outtakes from the photo session. Josh, in particular, had trouble remembering where to hold his clamp light.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

We are an Outstanding Director.







Yikes! Is it true that a shiny nickel of capital-C Credibility was bestowed upon us last night? Might the Rubber Repertory soon be forced to retire its title as the Rodney Dangerfield of local theatre companies? No way, Jose! We'll spare you the mushmouthed transcripts of our acceptance speeches, and you can all start pretending that it never happened.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Let's all audition for RED CANS!

UPDATED: A 2nd round of auditions has been added on Monday, May 22nd at the Dougherty Arts Center! Email rubberrep@gmail.com for an appointment.

It's time.

We're scouring Central Texas to find some top-notch physical performers for our next show. We ask that you please read the notice below, and pass it along to anyone who might fit the bill. Performers of all backgrounds welcome (Dance, sports, theatre, etcetera...).

very best regards
-RR

************************************************************

*Do you like to hide?
*Do you like to sweat?
*Do you enjoy:
----endurance tests?
----physical challenges?
----sensory deprivation?
*Do you like the idea of being a cog in a great machine?
*Are you at least moderately petite?
*Do you have fantasies of returning to the womb?
*Are you sick and tired of "acting"?

If you answered "YES!" to most of these questions,
the Rubber Repertory wants YOU for their next production.

RED CANS, a co-production with Rude Mechs,
will be performed at the Off Center August 3rd-19th.
Not really a play, and not quite a dance, RED CANS is
perhaps best described as an experiment in limitations.
What are the possibilities of a show in which all of the
performers are trapped inside small red containers?
Unable to see. Unable to speak.
Barely able to move. What's left?

Auditions will be held on Saturday, May 13th from
10AM-2PM at the Dougherty Arts Center.
Nothing to prepare.

Rehearsals begin in mid-June.

Call 512-470-1735 or email
rubberrep@gmail.com
to schedule an audition.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

The Rubber Repertory Rides Again.


It's an exciting day at Rubber Rep headquarters! We've spent the last few months quietly toiling on future productions, but at long last have some dates/venues to announce. See below for information on the two shows that will take us through 2006.

**************************************************************
RED CANS
~a Rubber Repertory and Rude Mechs co-production~
Directed by Josh Meyer and Matt Hislope
August 3-19 @ The Off Center, 2211-A Hidalgo Street
Thursdays-Saturdays at 8PM
Tickets: 512-476-RUDE (7833)

Instructions for Red Cans:

1. Find a group of Austin's best physical performers.

2. Seal them inside small red containers that inhibit their vision, movement, and breathing.

3. Store for three months in a cool, dark place and never above 95 degrees.

Note: When opening canned goods, always check for spoilage. If any mold or fungus seems to appear (or if there's a strange discoloration or smell), our recommendation is - when in doubt, throw them out.

The RED CANS get opened on August 3rd.

************************************************************************
and then...

AT HOME WITH DICK 2: A Progressive Degenerative Cabaret
Written by Dick Price
Directed by Josh Meyer and Matt Hislope
October 5-28 @ Dick's Apartment (3309 Grooms, Apt# 201)

You asked for it. Famed novelty songwriter Dick Price is back with an evening of all new songs. This time around, Dick sings about his father's battle with Alzheimer's Disease, race relations in Waco, TX, and the healing powers of Jane Austen. Come be tickled where you hurt.

Monday, January 30, 2006

RED CANS WORKSHOP WRAP-UP


R. Beegle

Notes & Observations:

RED CANS – FINAL WEEKEND

January 28-29, 2006


SATURDAY.

Instead of at public park, rehearsal has been moved to Josh and Matt’s apartment, due to rain. Slick laminate floor. All furniture has been pushed into the hallway or leaned up again the wall. Inside here, it is private and dark and humid: is this a more likely ‘can’ environment, than the sunny sociable park?

Sliding for the cans, mobility, is easier on slick laminate than on the crumbling concrete of the old basketball court at the park.

During 15 minutes of “open canning” the cans are given flashlights.

Is it warm and comfortable in here, or is it stifling?

One of the modified cans, with the sacks attached, is called Stomach Can. One of the actor’s arm came out of the hole in Stomach Can, the other hung limply in the lose red terrycloth sack – does this sack represent a severed limb, a memory of dismemberment? A phantom limb? Or, are we catching these beings in mid-evolution? Will the sack, as we watch, become useful? Or is it already being discarded, a failed genetic experiment, that will disappear completely in a few more generations? The cans seem at a formative stage, mid-evolution. The loose sacks are appendages that are no longer needed, that are disappearing -- or maybe they are growing into something: in a few generations, that sack will be more like an arm.

Which is it? Is the sack growing useless, or growing useful? Which direction are we moving, evolutionarily speaking? Are we watching progress or deterioration?

Flashlights are used both within cans, and outside of cans (poking out through holes) to point toward each other and at audience. Flashlights with visible actor arm attached versus flashlight just sticking out of a hole in the can. One could argue that it is more interesting if flashlight itself is never seen. The light inside the can is more interesting. And instead of better illumining the human inside, the flickering lights make the actors’ body shapes more abstract, less identifiable.

There is music for this period of open canning – atmospheric and spacey. Feels like a moonwalk or an alien exploration. As the music subsides, someone starts beating from within a can, hitting the nylon from the inside, and then the others join in like a protest, or a demand for something.

When the flashlight has a focused beam, coming from inside a can, it is like an iris or retina, a cycloptic searching eyeball. When it moves about, it appears to be frantically searching for something.

Are these cans fossils from our collective memories? Our future? Our prehistorical past?

Seriously today’s rehearsal is a little spooky. Like we all might at any moment change states from solid to liquid.

The Stomach Can “reaches out” to other cans with its appendages– is this a positive development, or a regressive trait? Is this a biological reflex, a learned behavior, or a bad habit it is trying to quit?

When the flashlight beams seem like little heartlights – when they flicker or flip off and on, they seem like some kind of beating organ – are these cans robots or tadpoles?

Are the flashlight beams investigative organs, like antennas?

Are differences among cans (head bumps, appendages, etc.) birth defects or evolutionary leaps?

There is a creepy, fast, manic shuddering within certain cans, with a flickering flashlight beam, which is weird and unsettling in this dark and dank environment.

This private, swampy and cavernous rehearsal space and the atmospheric music are so very different from the public park environment. Whole different feeling: not so delightful, instead it’s more alarming and darkly amusing.

Stomach can falls on its side but the loose sack becomes suddenly turgid, and sticks straight up into the air – rigor mortis? A sign of something? Is this the end? Does the can animal procreate as it’s dying?

As the music stopped, the cans filled the void by making sounds, various comical bodily noises.

Elizabeth suggests a possible climax to the performance: Use flashlights plus a weird lighting effect to reveal what’s inside the can, show the actor’s faces, a final reveal.

Does the production need “can shepherds” to herd the cans to the correct places, and to make sure they don’t get hurt? Or maybe a pole or hook or a crane, some outside force, could wrangle the cans. Some machine’s arm.

Are the cans cultish? Are they headed toward mass suicide, like lemmings? Are they a failed design, one that is about to self-destruct? Maybe that’s the climax: the failed cans self-destruct, in all manner of arresting ways.

Josh: maybe there will be a ‘mock’ can onstage, that will be crushed flat by a heavy object dropped from above. The audience thinks there was an actor inside…

The actors might wear costumes of total red, head-to-toe red, like inside a snail’s shell, and they may leave a slug’s trail.

How to achieve mass liquid spurting forth from a can?

Cole’s idea for this rehearsal: Cans act out stories from the Bible, just announce a title (“David and Goliath”) and then the cans go about representing the story.


SUNDAY:

During open canning, Rosaruby asks to be zipped completely into one of the modified cans – complete sheathed and zipped, at both top and bottom, tightly into the short nylon cylinder sack, with a flashlight inside. Inside the can with her flickering flashlight, she lies on what may be her back and begins to shudder – fast, rhythmic, and seeming to reach some kind of culmination. A masturbating sack? Do cans reproduce alone, by budding? Then, suddenly, she thrusts both arms out of the small holes at the top of the can. Her arms are exactly as long as the height of the can, and seem very masculine and even a little frightening. So very strange. A little bit Todd Browning’s “Freaks,” the “one of us, one of us” mantra. She lifts herself (still completely incased, zipped into, the short nylon can) with her arms and moves about the room on her hands in a muscular fashion, blindly grabbing ahold of everything in her path. These muscular, moving and searching arms and yet no head, no other defining feature. These arms make the cans seem even less human, more bizarre. Like something born without a face or a conscience. A bully with no brain.

At one point she places the flashlight down at the bottom front of the can, and with her arms out, and the beam of light shining forth from her crotch, it’s as though she’s presenting biology in its most basic state: a lighted tip, moving unthinkingly toward you.

But then, the flashlight can be removed, and moved to other areas of body. In how many ways are these cans differently abled?

The flashlights beaming on and off within separate cans seems to beat like a semaphore between cans, a way to communicate. Also, seems like other cans are peeking at what their peers are up to. (Even though in actuality, it is still difficult for the actors to see what’s going on within the other cans.)

Rosaruby lies on her back in her can, flashlight beam facing out at us. Her lifted and curved legs within the can create a frame for a small diorama: she makes finger puppets in the shape of a beating heart, and then she actually beats the bottom of her can, the sound of heartbeats on the nylon membrane, an impenetrable membrane? This can seems very separate from others and alone, stuck inside can but still trying to communicate.

What if we hear true sounds of distress from within a can, like the sounds of an actor who wants to be let out of the can, but no one comes to let them out? Is it part of the play, or is it the real sound of an actor’s distress?

Rosaruby’s hands slapping the laminate floor – this is a good sound.

What if the cans with arms and hands out attempt to assume classical Greek poses?

Are the cans prehistoric or more fully developed than current humans or are they robots?

Should an unrelated body suddenly enter the performance? A giant cowboy piñata? Someone dressed as a piñata? A child? A child in costume? Reminded of Pierre Huyghe film

“Streamside Day” part of which features a parade in which children are dressed in strange slapdash half-animal costumes, slightly degraded, and someone is dressed as a menacing collection of moving boxes. Seems to go along with this question of: where are we, in the history of evolution, and in which direction are we moving?

http://www.imma.ie/en/page_72393.htm

When multiple cans have their arms thrust out, the cans can link arms in interesting ways. More like a mollusk, can extend or retract parts of its body in and out of its shell. Actually, it’s a little sickening. But in a good way.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

RED CANS WEEK 4...


ended with the cans in a jubilant mood!

Final dramaturg notes coming later this week.

Full production this summer.

Venue and dates still TBA, but not for much longer.

xx-RR