September 28 at 12:30 & 7:00
Our second season in the Black Box opened with a showcase of prose, poetry, and body pieces performed by graduate students and one fearless faculty member. Representative highlights were The Foot, written and performed by Joni Butcher, Corsos Giant Turtle, performed by Rowdy Sibley, Shanges Somebody Almost Walked Off With All Of My Stuff, performed by Iresha Dillon, and Twains Jim Blaine and his Grandfathers Old Ram, performed by Michael Bowman.
Adapted & directed by Jacque Burleson & Joni Butcher (JB2)
Adapted from diverse versions, the bittersweet tale of monstrous love and/as beauty received a musical treatment from Burleson and Butcher. While the conventions of both the musical and fairytale were intact, the team realized their own beastly beauty in the production by their eclectic mix of costumes, contrasting narrative and dramatic scenes, and writing new lyrics for the familiar show and pop tunes they used.
Adapted & directed by Dan Heaton
Heaton approached each of OConnors stories "The Comforts of Home," "Good Country People," and "Parkers Back" with a different technique for adapting and staging narrative. His use of Readers Theatre, Chamber Theatre, and inter-textual compilation highlighted the different sensory and critical appeals each makes to the audience. In the case of "Parkers Back," for instance, the collage of multiple texts and imagery created a very different analytical though quite similar sensory experience as does the story on the page.
A celebration of the exceptional performances developed by undergraduate students in the introductory course. Two highlights of note were Linda Desormeauxs performance of Ethel Livingstons Somehow you know when it arrives and Donald Barthelmes The School, performed by Lisa Swartzel.
Compiled & directed by Rowdy Sibley
December 3 & 4
A staging of his MA research, Teach Your Children, Well consisted of oral narratives Sibley collected from middle-school English teachers in the Baton Rouge public school system. Both LSU students and some of the teachers performed in the piece, which offered a sobering look at how the under-funded system constrains teacher initiative and creativity.
February 8 at 12:30 & 7:30
Again, the graduate students offered a mid-day and evening showcase of their work. Since we cant recall what they performed, well wonder instead as to how they performed . . . during the noon hour. Huh.
Directed by Rowdy Sibley
March 4-6, April 8 & 9, May 6-8
Over the course of the semester, Sibley worked with a group of undergraduate students to explore the stated question in diverse ways, their discoveries culminating in a series of public performances. Soon after, Sibley established the weekly slam poetry events that continue to this day in Baton Rouge watering holes.
By Dylan Thomas * Directed by Michael S. Bowman
In his staging of Thomass Play for Voices (written specifically for radio), Bowman struck a seductive balance between visual and acoustic appeals. Simple decorative flats, costumes, and set pieces created a home place for each performer on stage while, through striking vocal orchestration, the performers evoked the eccentric characters, saints and sinners, dreams and disappointments of the fictional small town, Llareggub.
A rousing evening of solo performances by students in the introductory course.