Founded in 2013, LAX showcases some of the most innovative artists and independent companies in Los Angeles. This year, seven experimental productions are staged at venues throughout LA, including Union Station, the Bootleg Theater and Automata. Among them are five productions that involve a number of CalArtians.
White Rabbit Red Rabbit
In Iranian writer playwright Nassim Soleimanpour’s White Rabbit Red Rabbit, a different actor takes the stage every night and is handed the script for the first time. What follows is a “playful, enigmatic and haunting” commentary on the strictures that a generation of Iranian citizens face, one that has never known an Iran that is not a part of the Islamic State.
Performers include CalArts Critical Studies faculty Douglas Kearney (Critical Studies MFA 04), current Theater faculty Marissa Chibas, former Theater faculty Kristina Wong and Roger Guenveur Smith, and alum Jesse Saler (Theater BFA 07).
In Moonchops, writer and performer Brian Getnick inhabits a succession of characters to take viewers deeper and deeper into the woods.
From the website:
From a prop room below a high school theater a young magician practices the arts of transformation: magic, dance, story telling. He imagines this private theater as animistic: every ornament and instrument an actor. As his work progresses, the characters he invents forget him. They shift the lights, the sounds and all the instruments of theatrical illusion into their own paradigm.
CalArts alum Chu-Hsuan Chang (Theater MFA 15) is the lighting designer for this fantasy production.
Above: Trailer for ‘Moonchops.’
Sonnets to Orpheus
Danielle Birrittella’s (Music-Theater 09) Sonnets to Orpheus, a song cycle for voice, string quartet, ukulele and harmonium; is based on Rainer Maria Rilke’s 55-sonnet cycle of the same name. Thirteen composers worked together to bring Rilke’s masterpiece to life, namely Aoife O’Donovan, Jherek Bischoff, Ellen Reid (Music MFA 11), Qasim Naqvi (Music MFA 08), Christopher Rountree, Andrew Rowan (Music MFA 12), Bobby Halvorson (Music MFA 10, DMA 13), Tim Carr (Music BFA 11), Birrittella, Greg Uhlmann (Music BFA 14), Kyle Sanna, Sheena Wenger (Music BFA 11), Areni Agbabian (Music MFA 07) and Derek Stein (Music MFA 10).
Sonnets to Orpheus is created and performed by Birrittella, with dramaturgy and choreography by Alexis Macnab (Theater MFA 13), video design by Keith Skretch (Theater MFA 12), costume design by Beryl Brachman (Theater MFA 17) and sound design by Harlow Price (Theater 13).
as occurred, as recalled
The dance work as occurred, as recalled explores false memory and how a moment, when recalled multiple times, becomes untethered from reality. as occurred, as recalled is choreographed by the duo WHYTEBERG, which is Gracie Whyte and alumna Laura Berg (Dance BFA 14).
F L W R S
In F L W R S, five females from Stephanie Zaletel’s (Dance BFA 12) szalt dance company perform a not-so-chronological movement piece depicting femininities, amid silvering hair, the harsh lights of a dressing room and hundreds of flowers. The work features original music by Louis Lopez (Music MFA 12), costumes by Zaletel and performances by Lindsey Lollie (Dance BFA 12), Sarah Prinz, Julia Planine-Troiani, Jordan Saenz (Dance BFA 12) and Zaletel.
Sound House (everyone is working)
John Eagle (Music MFA 13), Theater faculty Janie Geiser and Cassia Streb (Music MFA 06) present a work-in-progress interactive sound and art performance piece. In Sound House, eight performers follow a set of instructions in order to build a structure. These tasks shape the sound in the room and the performance is over once the structure is complete.
From the website:
The brick structure is based on the above ground entrance structures for the Minuteman missile silos, where military technicians enter an underground control room, waiting to launch a missile. They have few practical tasks to accomplish; their main occupation is filling time: reading, playing games, drawing on the walls and napping. Inspired by this history, the human performers and the puppets in Sound House are occupied with practical and idle tasks.
Sound House (everyone is working) features scene design by Vincent Richards (Theater MFA 13), video design by Hsuan-Kuang Hsieh (Theater MFA 15), lighting design by Chu-Hsuan Chang (Theater MFA 15), puppet design by Geiser, video content by Geiser and Hsieh, creative technology by Eric Heep (Music MFA 16) and performances by Moira MacDonald (Theater MFA 12), Brian Hashimoto (Theater MFA 16), Miranda Kahn (Theater MFA 16), Tane Kawasaki (Theater MFA 02) and Stephanie Nemazee (Theater MFA 16).
Above: Trailer for ‘F L W R S.’
Live Arts Exchange
Sept. 22 through Oct. 2
Various locations in Los Angeles
Tickets: from $15; festival passes $100