Jan 23, 2020
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Feb 2, 2020

The Transfiguration Of Benjamin Banneker

“Skipitares’ works have a bitter humor and dreamlike brevity…she is a possessed and clairvoyant miniaturist.”
– The Village Voice

World Premiere
Directed by Theodora Skipitares
Conceived and Directed by Theodora Skipitares
Music by LaFrae Sci
Choreography by Edisa Weeks
featuring the Soul Tigers Marching Band

a black arrow pointing downward

This event celebrates the life of Benjamin Banneker, a free black man living in Maryland from 1731 to 1806, who had a passion for the stars, taught himself mathematics and astronomy, and made important scientific discoveries. The play time-travels forward to the 1960’s, and illuminates the life of Ed Dwight, the first black astronaut. Students from the high school contribute autobiographical material to the performance and will participate alongside professional performers.

Composer LaFrae Sci has received an Individual Artist’s Commission from NYSCA for The Transfiguration of Benjamin Banneker.

Received support as part of The Jim Henson Foundation 2019 Presenter’s Grant

“With abundant ingenuity that brings to mind the wonders of Alexander Calder’s circus, Theodora Skipitares makes of the Trojan War, a central saga of Greek tragedy, a puppet spectacular.”
– The New York Times

“Her work is an illuminating exploration into the laboratories of life.”
– The New York Times

Conceived, Designed and Directed by Theodora Skipitares
Music by LaFrae Sci
Choreography by Edisa Weeks
Puppetry Direction by Jane Catherine Shaw
Set Design by Donald Eastman and Theodora Skipitares
Lighting by Jeffrey Nash
Stage Manager Karen Oughtred

featuring the Soul Tigers Marching Band and the Banneker Dancers
with Reginald L. Barnes as Narrator, puppeteers Jane Catherine Shaw, Chris Ignacio, and Alexandria Smalls
and Tom Walker as Jefferson

Skysaver Productions, a resident company at La MaMa, is an award-winning interdisciplinary performance group based in New York. Under the direction of Theodora Skipitares, the company has created 30 performance works, each featuring documentary texts, original music, video, and as many as 300 puppet figures. Ms. Skipitares and her group have worked in India, Vietnam, Cambodia, Korea, Brazil and Iran.

The show is produced under the following program(s):
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