Nov 16, 2020

Mute Swan | Experiments in Digital Storytelling

CultureHub and La MaMa present Mute Swan, produced by CultureHub and La MaMa in association with Theatre in Quarantine

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Mute Swan is to be known as a ‘Future Myth’ about identity, distraction, courage, and love. Written, directed, and performed now – for later. Performed live from CultureHub by Chris Bell, Mute Swan is written by Pulitzer-prize finalist Madeleine George and co-created by CultureHub, Katie Rose McLaughlin, Raja Feather Kelly, Joshua William Gelb, Chris Bell, and Gavin Price. Theater in Quarantine is an online performance laboratory dedicated to the exploration of the theatrical experience inside the digital space directed by Joshua William Gelb and Katie Rose McLaughlin.

Mute Swan is produced by CultureHub and La MaMa in association with Theater in Quarantine, developed in CultureHub and La MaMa’s Experiments in Digital Storytelling Program, which incubates meaningful, story-driven artworks that harness digital distribution platforms, expand online audience engagement, and push the boundaries of current artistic forms. Powered by LiveLab, a browser-based media-router for collaborative performance by CultureHub.

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Joshua William Gelb is an East Village-based director, performer, and librettist currently building theater out of his converted closet christened the Theater in Quarantine. Prior to the pandemic, Gelb created the musical interrogation of the 1927 Al Jolson film Jazz Singer (New Yorker critic’s pick) which was commissioned and built-in residence at Abrons Arts Center with Nehemiah Luckett. Previously in residence at Abrons, Gelb conceived and directed the sesquicentennial anniversary reimagining of America’s supposed first musical The Black Crook (NYT Critic’s Pick), about which he lectured at Harvard University’s Houghton Library. His Drama Desk-nominated adaptation of A Hunger Artist, created with Sinking Ship, continues to tour. Other work has been presented at Ars Nova, LMCC Process Space, New Ohio, Joe’s Pub, Polyphone Festival, and Target Margin. Gelb participated in the Lincoln Center Directors Lab, is an associate artist with Sinking Ship, and teaches Theater Collaboration at Cooper Union. Visit for more information.

Katie Rose McLaughlin is an NYC-based choreographer originally from Minneapolis, MN. Katie Rose is the Associate Choreographer of the Tony-award winning Broadway show Hadestown directed by Rachel Chavkin and choreographed by David Neumann.
 Her choreography has been presented by The Chocolate Factory, Catch, the Invisible Dog Art Center, HERE Arts Center, newMoves Contemporary Dance Festival, Movement Research at Judson Church, and the International Festival of Art & Ideas. She was an artist-in-residence at LMCC’s Process Space, Dance Lab New York, Kaatsbaan International Dance Center, the Barn Arts Collective, and LMCC’s SPARC program. Notable theater credits include Orlando (Williamstown Theatre Festival), Indecent (Weston Playhouse), Bear Slayer (Ars Nova), and The Black Crook (Abrons Arts Center). In 2013, she co-founded and became the Artistic Director of Designated Movement Co., a dance/theater company interested in blurring the lines between forms. Visit for more information.

Raja Feather Kelly is a choreographer, director, and the artistic director of the feath3r theory. A three-time winner of the Princess Grace Award, Raja is the 2019–2020 Randjelović/Stryker Resident Commissioned Artist at New York Live Arts, a Creative Associate at The Juilliard School, an inaugural Jerome Hill Artist Fellow, a 2019 Creative Capital award recipient, and the Artist Laureate at The Invisible Dog since 2013. Over the past decade, Kelly has created fifteen evening-length premieres with his company the feath3r theory as well as directing and choreographing extensively for Off-Broadway theatre in New York City. Raja is the choreographer for the 2019 Pulitzer Prize winning Drama FAIRVIEW, written by Jackie Sibblies-Drury; directed by Sarah Benson and the 2020 Pulitzer Prize winning Musical A STRANGE LOOP, Written by Michael R. Jackson; directed by Stephen Brackett. Frequent collaborators include: Lileana Blain-Cruz, Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, and Sarah Benson. He was born in Fort Hood, Texas and holds a B.A. in Dance and English from Connecticut College.

Madeleine George’s plays include The Sore Loser, Hurricane Diane (Obie Award), The (curious case of the) Watson Intelligence (Pulitzer Prize finalist; Outer Critics Circle John Gassner Award), Seven Homeless Mammoths Wander New England (Susan Smith Blackburn finalist), Precious Little, and The Zero Hour (Jane Chambers Award, Lambda Literary Award finalist). Honors include a Whiting Award, the Princess Grace Award for Playwriting, and the Stacey Mindich Lilly Award. Madeleine is an alum of New Dramatists, a founding member of the Obie-Award-winning playwrights’ collective 13P, the Mellon Playwright in Residence at Two River Theater in New Jersey, and the Director of Admissions for the Bard Prison Initiative at Bard College. She lives in the Bronx.

Chris Bell is a performer originally from the Eastside of San Antonio, Texas. He has a MFA (Case Western Reserve University) and a BS (Lamar University) in Dance and because he likes camping, the beach, and still holds out hope of being an astronaut with a BS in Geology. He currently makes work with Raja Feather Kelly as a member of the feath3r theory, is a principal with Eryc Taylor Dance Inc. and is a frequent collaborator with (and former choreographic assistant to) Mark Dendy (dendy/donovan). As an educator he teaches and has developed content for Marquis Studios, TADA! Youth Theaters, Fort Worth Fine Arts Academy, ETD Outreach, Rioult Dance NY, Dixon Place, and Marble Collegiate Church, where he is also the resident choreographer a position he has served at The American Theater of Harlem and The Mather Dance Collective. His company @chrisbelldances has presented work in 3 states and 4 out of 5 boroughs in NYC, including evening length works at Dixon Place and Gibney Dance Center. Visit For more information.

Gavin Price is a multidisciplinary performing and technical artist. He is a classically trained actor and vocalist, and plays over ten instruments. He is also a sound designer and engineer, as well as a Motion Capture technician. He has toured nationally & internationally with the critically acclaimed theater group Elevator Repair Service as both actor and sound designer. He has performed and designed across the country in museum installations (MCA’s Arguendo; MoMA’s A Sort of Joy (Thousands of Exhausted Things); New Museum’s XX-ID; Metropolitan Museum of Art’s The Return of Adam; Walker Art Center’s Fondly, Collette Richland) and extensively in New York City (Public Theater, New York Theater Workshop, HERE Arts Center, St Anne’s, PS122, LaMaMa, Soho Rep, River2River Festival). From 2011-2014, he was production manager for Face the Music, the country’s only youth orchestra devoted to music by living composers, who has collaborated and performed with Kronos Quartet, Nico Muhly, Angelica Negron, Bang on a Can, among others.

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