The Revenants. Golden Mask Nom. Moscow. 2016-2019.
Ibsen’s Ghosts, Вернувшиеся ('The Revenants') is an immersive adaptation of Ibsen’s classic story. Within a seventeenth century estate in the center of Moscow, Russia. At the epicenter of this theatrical experience, the audience is invited to freely explore Ibsen’s epic world, forging their own unique journey. Blending classical text, modern dance and cinematically-designed installation, The Revenants maintains Ibsen’s renowned narrative through a new, provocative lens that influences all five senses.
Ghosts captured us insidiously; its complex and arduous exploration of imminent death became an epidemic – resurfacing time and again when searching for the right narrative challenge. The discomfort we felt while reading this text for the first time fueled our interest in taking on its challenge. This is not a particularly pretty work and not one you would assume to be built into an “immersive” world. On the surface, it is discursive and didactic but underneath the deliberately flowery dialogue, it is dripping with mystery and darkly complex emotion. The more we considered the work, the more impassioned we felt to tell this story and delve into the unknown of its world. Ibsen set the tone of the piece but left a beautiful blank slate in determining the fullness of the world surrounding it. As artists, we strive for clarity through process; culling source material that pushes the limits of comfort so that we may broaden our creative horizons. To know a story is to transcend the surface understanding of the material and transform it into something dynamic and uniquely invigorating for each individual audience member. In discovering the nuances and morality presented by Ibsen, our perspective on life, death and art has reformed. This show reminds us that time in this world is fleeting. We are all just travelers passing through, fated to our own personal journeys- clinging to our search for truth, love and forgiveness.
Over the course of a five-month period, we developed and experimented a new form in a new city. Developing a piece with market viability for foreign nationals is considerably more difficult when Russian is beautiful, but a commitment to learn.
*Recognized with by the Golden Mask (TONY of Eastern Europe), New European Theatre, among others.
Faceless. Expanding the world of our international works by upping the ante. Saint Petersburg. 2017-2019.
Our experiment on scale and application.
Riding off the continued success of our first production in Russia (The Revenants) – the team only had a few months to develop, rehearse, build and launch this piece. We consider this production internally as the “whiplash show.’
The narrative is constructed around heavy abuse, domestic and societal – and follows inhabitants breaking that cycle of abuse, most to find out that unimaginable sacrifices must be made.
Faceless is a custom-made production, from the writing to the building (we had a roof built for a massive outdoor courtyard) – and an immersive performance in which we ‘created a gem along the banks of the Neva River’, (basically next door to The Hermitage).
We applied a foundational combination of epic theater, choreography, state-of-the-art technology, interactive branching storylines, installation design, olfactory notations to underscore a custom-made orchestration by Therr Maitz.
Since, we have launched numerous brand and cultural partnerships with film festivals from Europe, Fortune 100s; the launch of Emigrants (a private member’s club and restaurant – which the venue transforms into to expose the underbelly of the truest parties) captured the nightlife of Saint Petersburg.
In an effort to create a safe space that encourages the release of prohibitions and boundaries, it was important to understand what worked, and what didn’t from our experiment in Moscow. This piece was built from pure opportunity to get a completely new experience. This production was built with administrative support by YBW.