Theater: REDCAT’S 18TH ANNUAL NEW ORIGINAL WORKS FESTIVAL (Roy & Edna Disney/CalArts Theater, Disney Hall)

by Connor McCormick on October 9, 2021

in Theater-Los Angeles

Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater (REDCAT), CalArts’ downtown center for contemporary arts, presents the 18th annual New Original Works (NOW) Festival, a celebration of Los Angeles’ vibrant community of artists creating new contemporary performance work, over three weekends this fall: Oct. 7-9, Oct. 14-16, and Oct. 21-23.

This year’s festival returns to in-person performances with nine new works by Los Angeles artists who are redefining the boundaries of contemporary performance, inventing hybrid artistic disciplines, reimagining traditions, and confronting urgent issues.  The unprecedented 17th edition of the event, held across Fall 2020 and Winter 2021, streamed directly from REDCAT to viewers in over 30 countries around the world.

“This year’s NOW Festival imagines a plethora of social and cultural possibilities,” said Edgar Miramontes, REDCAT’s Deputy Executive Director and Curator. “As we move through the constant disruption of our current moment, the NOW artists and their projects begin to envision what’s next.”

Each year, NOW Festival transforms REDCAT into a laboratory for premiering new contemporary dance, theater, music, and multimedia performances. All artistic teams receive free rehearsal space, technical support, and artist fees. Since the first edition in 2004, NOW Festival has presented the work of over 200 L.A.-based artists.

NOW Festival 2021 was organized by Miramontes with artists in the community, including Sebastian Hernandez and Ligia Lewis. In the spirit of the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts), REDCAT’s parent institution, the NOW Festival serves as a catalyst for creativity and new ideas. Over its 18 year history, the program has launched nearly 150 works by an impressive list of artists who continue to be seen on stages throughout the U.S. and abroad.

Each of the three weekends features a triple bill of world premieres in a shared evening. Each program is premiered on Thursday evening and repeated Friday and Saturday evenings at 8:30 pm. This year, performances will also be live streamed each Saturday night during the festival’s run.

Week Two, held Oct. 14-16, 2021, comprises a program of works by artists Eloquent Peasants, Joshua Hill, and Rosanna Tavarez:

Eloquent Peasants: Kubrick’s Aryan Papers or How I learned that I’m in pain 24 hours a day
Based on fictional events surrounding filmmaker Stanley Kubrick’s notorious unfinished project, Aryan Papers, the newly established ensemble Eloquent Peasants create a cinematic multimedia experience in Kubrick’s Aryan Papers or How I learned that I’m in pain 24 hours a day. In his fleeting subconscious, Kubrick attempts to complete the Holocaust movie he never finished as memories of his friends and family echo from within. Written by playwrights Hunter Abal and David Blindauer and developed with support from CalArts Center for New Performance.

Joshua Hill: Song Cycle
Through inventive sound experiments, composer, songwriter, and educator Joshua Hill stages a series of fragmented memories from his father and singer, Greg Hill, who was diagnosed with dementia early last year. Featuring a mixture of pre-recorded sound and live performance, Song Cycle follows the intimacy of one family’s story, but aims to reveal a more universal story of the challenges of dementia and the need for self-expression. In the end, music becomes a way to communicate when abilities are compromised or lost.

Rosanna Tavarez: Piece X Piece
Informed by scholar Margaret Chin’s book, Sewing Women: Immigration and The New York City Garment Industry, and research on the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire of 1911, choreographer Rosanna Tavarez and company LA DANSA DANSA’s new dance duet toggles between the escapist, rags-to-riches fantasy narratives of telenovelas, and the heartbreaking reality of the immigrant experience. Piece X Piece uses Rosanna’s mother’s immigration experience as a foundation to explore the challenges of transitioning from one physical and mental territory to a drastically new one.

TICKETS & INFORMATION: 
REDCAT’s 18th Annual New Original Works (NOW) Festival

Week Two: Oct. 14-16, 2021 at 8:30 p.m. (Program Two)
Eloquent Peasants: Kubrick’s Aryan Papers or How I learned that I’m in pain 24 hours a day
Joshua Hill: Song Cycle
Rosanna Tavarez: Piece X Piece

Week Three: October 21-23

Jobel Medina: David, My Goliath
Jasmine Orpilla: 
TALGED, Her Body She Cares For, Her Soul/s (She) Guards.
Amy O’Neal: 
There is No Other (The Remix)

Coming up in Week Three: October 21-23

Jobel Medina: David, My Goliath
Jasmine Orpilla: 
TALGED, Her Body She Cares For, Her Soul/s (She) Guards.
Amy O’Neal: 
There is No Other (The Remix)

Ticketing:
$20 for General admission
$16 for REDCAT members and students
$10 for CalArts students, faculty and staff
$40 Festival pass

Each Saturday night of NOW Festival will also be livestreamed for a virtual audience. Tickets will be $15 ($12 for REDCAT members, students, and the CalArts community).

Tickets can be purchased at:
https://www.redcat.org/event/now-2021-week-two

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