Upcoming: HEAVEN, February 27 - March 1, 2020
Booth Playhouse, Blumenthal Performing Arts Center
A modern fairy tale roller coaster ride through conflict and harmony, chaos, courage and kindness.
HEAVEN is inspired by the poem FALLEN MOON FALLEN STARS by North Carolina’s award-winning poet Chuck Sullivan and the work of visual, performing and media artists from Charlotte and beyond. Told through contemporary dance, theater, music, film, video-mapping and visual arts, the story travels through realities and dreams of Maria-Helena, a detained immigrant child. Separated from her parents and maneuvering an upside-down heaven in her holding cage, she learns that to be released she must find a “lamp besides the golden door.”Supported by Mother Mary and the ghost of Maria-Helena's murdered brother, she discovers it hidden under the treasures of a narcissistic Pinocchio. To give up the lamp, Pinocchio must lose his treasures and become a real “Mensch” - with the help of the audience, whose own response and participation may change events in HEAVEN.
The world premiere stage production HEAVEN, creatively utilizes a vast range of voices that are distinct in their tones, timbres and rhythms and challenges misunderstandings that currently divide our communities. Many of our collaborating artists are foreign born Charlotteans (including Mexico, Colombia, Vietnam, Germany, Switzerland). In keeping with Moving Poets core mission, we work with a community of artists of different cultures, age groups and disciplines. Not only does the project highlights the challenges of migration and displacement but reflects, emphasizes and celebrates the culturally diverse, rich experiences and valuable contributions of natives and immigrants to our community.
Theatrically HEAVEN it is rooted in contemporary dance-theater with a sharp satirical edge and no fear of the absurd. Images can be startling and eerily beautiful, influences from Martha Graham to Pina Bausch to Samuel Becket may come to mind. Musically it ranges from acoustic melodically on traditional instruments through avantgarde experimental compositions with power tools and sound objects, to club music and hip-hop. While the story unfolds, the audience finds itself to become part of it, being challenged to engage and to, not unlike in an escape room, help find the key to a way out.
HEAVEN's local, national and international artists come from North & South American, Native, African, Asian, Middle Eastern and European backgrounds and range in ages from 15 to 75. They include uniquely talented young performers as well as award winning and highly accomplished veterans, whose work is collected by major museums like the Smithsonian, who are inducted in to the Rock'n Roll Hall of Fame, received recognitions like a Grammy Nomination, the Sam Regan Award for lifetime achievement and who are current & former members of companies like Martha Graham Company, Sasha Waltz & Guests, The Grateful Dead and Life Dead & Riders69 ....
Artistic direction: MyLoan Dinh & Till Schmidt Rimpler
Visual Artists: Nico Amortegui (CO) | MyLoan Dinh (VN|US) | Michelle Gregory (US) | Rosalia Torres-Weiner (MX)
Performers: MyLoan Dinh (VN/US) | Perry Eastman (US)| Sara Eastman (US)| Katherine Goforth (US)
Cynthia Farbman Harris (US) | Mike Harris (UK/US) | Movement Migration Kim Jones & E.E. Balcos (US)
Chuck Sullivan (US) | Alyce Cristina Vallejo (US) | Rosalia Torres-Weiner (MX) | Nina Bischoff* (US) | Juan Castellanos* (US) | Sarah Clarke* (US) | Sabriyya Dean* (US) | Alex Griffith* (US) | Danielle Lieberman* (US) | Eric Stith* (US) | (* with kind support of Charlotte Ballet and Charlotte Ballet Academy)
Musicians: Tanja Bechtler (US/CH), cello | Tom Constanten (US), Keys | David Crowe (US), percussion | DAE-LEE (US), vocals| Mike Kenerley (US), drums | Milad Khawam (SYR), trumpet | Till Schmidt-Rimpler (DE), bass | Bob Teixeira (US), guitars | Joe Wilson (US), saxophone
Choreographers: Maya Gomez (DE/ES) | Kim Jones (US) | Till Schmidt-Rimpler (DE)
Music by: David Crowe (US) | Dae-Lee (US) | Joe Wilson (US) | Tom Constanten (US) with additional contributions by all musicians
Music director and composer: David Crowe (US)
Poet: Chuck Sullivan (US)
Writers: Chuck Sullivan (US) | Mike Harris (UK) | Katherine Goforth (US)
Film Maker: Dellair Youssef (SYR) | Projection/Video Mapping: Shawman (US) | Light Design: Wink Lighting (US) | Videos & sound effects: Moving Poets
Additional artists to be announced.
HEAVEN is made possible by the generous support of the Knight Foundation Celebrate Charlotte Arts Grant, the Reemprise Fund, Arts & Science Council and the NC Blumenthal Performing Arts Center.
January 30, 2020 | By ASC Charlotte
Artistic and Organizational Partner: Moving Poets