Universe Expanding
The Annex
June 9 - 26, 2005
Thursday - Saturday 7:30pm
Sunday - 2:30pm & 7:30pm
Tickets $20
Created by Jane Catherine Shaw

Box office 212.475.7710

UNIVERSE EXPANDING asks audiences to travel through space - from vignette to vignette, as they travel through time- from curtain up to curtain down. Vignettes engage them in thinking about our relationship to and understanding of science, religion and myth, and how each of these things, have at times, been the focus of our understanding of the universe-and our place in it. Science, myth and religion are contrasted and unified through visual imagery, text, and music. A metal screen serves as a projection surface. On it a body of water moves gently to the sounds of chanted Ohms. The audience gathers beneath it. Text delivered live by the performers begins the narrative of Brahma’s birth. A spot of light illuminates a clear dome half filled with water: the sleeping Vishnu, the lotus growing from his navel, Brahma in the lotus petals. Creation and Time, as Hindu mythology and religion conceives of it, becomes the textural focus. Brahma, as a small rod puppet, awakens in a giant lotus.
In another location Eve struggles to reach the apple in the newly-created Garden of Eden. Below, the apple falls on Newton’s head, who tosses it aside without hesitation while he conceives Principia. Later, the apple becomes a garden of giant apples tossed in the air. One lands on suspended fabric, bending it, much as the sun bends the fabric of space time. Performers move through these and other vignettes-in-progress on their way to the next, in full view of the audience; the past catches the present, and proceeds to the future. Original music composed for the piece by David Patterson will create a backdrop for the series of vignettes and serve as a travel theme for audiences in transit.

Jane Catherine Shaw (Creator) has been performing in and creating works of Puppetry for over 20 years. She has premiered THE LONE RUNNER and BED OF LIGHT at LaMaMa in previous years. In November 2004, she co-curated the VOICE 4 VISION PUPPET FESTIVAL at Theater For The New City. She has worked with Lee Breuer as master puppeteer in PETER AND WENDY and appeared in EPIDOG and ECCO PORCO. She also works frequently with Theodora Skipitares. She is Puppetry Director and Designer for Lee Breuer's DOLLHOUSE, which features 36 marionettes controlled by 6 performers.

David Patterson (Composer) has a BFA in classical guitar, played at the 1996 Olympics Opening Ceremony (Irish), the Jay Leno Show (rock), and has written original compositions for theater and film.

Jeff Nash (Lighting Designer) has created lighting for numerous productions in theater, opera and dance, as well as exhibit and museum projects, throughout the US, Europe and Asia. As a member of Inverse Theater Co. he designed recent productions of Midnight Brainwash Revival, Grace Notes, and Lost. He recently returned from Berlin where he designed three productions by John Jesurun at the Haus der Berliner Festspiele, including the premiere of Philoktetes. Other directors/artists that he has worked with include Ellen Stewart, Frank Corsaro, Stuart Sherman, John Vaccaro, Robert Wilson, and Gian Carlo Menotti.

Members of the company include Frank Dowd, who has been doing the voices for all the insects in Maya The Bee for the past five seasons. He has been seen in the New York premiere of Christopher Durang’s Death Comes To Us All Mary Agnes and The Misadventures of Chelsea Clinton. Michael Kelly has been designing and performing puppetry for over 17 years. Elisa Hevia received her degree in sculpture from Armando Reveron Institute Caracas Venezuela. For the past four years, she has been involved in designing and acting at Naku Puppet Theater. Eva Lansberry is a performer, designer, and reluctant architect. Alissa Mello has worked with SkySaver Productions and Theodora Skipitares, Czechoslovak - American Marionette Theatre, Jane Catherine Shaw and The Culture Project. Jon Riddleberger just completed his first year at NYU Tishc's Experimental Theatre Wing and is greatly awaiting his second year. Sara Roucloux is a singer and performer who recently become interested in puppetry. This is her second appearance with Ms Shaw. Priscilla Siregar is working with Jane Catherine Shaw for the first time. Bethany Sullivan is a sculpture major at Pratt Institute. This is her first show, and she plans to get an MFA in puppetry after she graduates.

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