The Popular Edge, Pop-Up and Book Arts News

November 10, 2011

Shakespeare Beyond Words

Filed under: performace art — Tags: , , — popularkinetics @ 8:58 pm

Aside from Washington, D.C.’s impressive monuments, museums, and libraries, our nation’s capitol has a thriving theater community. The Synetic Theater Company is one of the city’s theatrical treasures. Billed as “physical theater,” most of its performances are wordless interpretations of great dramas, combining mime, dance, and acrobatics with amazing sets, props, and costumes. This season’s Speak No More  silent Shakespeare Festival features three plays, MacBeth, Othello, and Romeo and Juliet.

The idea of a silent performance of Shakespeare may seem to run counter to the Bard’s emphasis on words and dialogue, but Synetic’s performances work on an intuitive level, using the universal languages of movement and art to convey the essential meaning of the plays. The company has also mounted performances of Dracula, King Arthur, Frankenstein, and our favorite, The Master and Margarita with actors posing as manuscripts in costumes of hand-written text.

Founded in 2001 by Paata and Irina Tsikurishvili from the Republic of Georgia, the company’s experimental approach to theater is a joy to experience. Washington visitors should definitely add a Synetic performance to their list of must-see D.C. attractions.


April 21, 2009

Science, Sex, and Sculptural Paper

Filed under: animation, art classes, crafts — Tags: , , , , , — popularkinetics @ 10:00 pm

Isabella Rossalini as a Fly

What could be more fascinating than Isabella Rossellini working with paper costuming and sculptures to explain reproductive processes of sea creatures and insects? In her “Green Porno” series of short video productions, Rossellini acts and directs in these funny, informative, and beautifully produced little science segments. Season One covers the reproduction of flies, bees, spiders, fireflies and earthworms. Season Two expands to examine how sea creatures mate, featuring whales, limpets, and starfish, among others. Working with production designer Andy Byers and a team of theater pros, Rossellini has succeeded in making science education a lot more fun with these little video gems!

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