A satirical freak show reflecting the house of mirrors called climate change
CONCEIVED, WRITTEN AND PERFORMED BY ROSS TRAVIS
May 17th – 21st, 2023
Devised and Created by – Ross Travis and Ronlin Foreman
Directed by – Ronlin Foreman
Costume Design – Lydia Foreman
Wings Design – Crooked Feather
Mask Design – Ronlin Foreman
Makeup Design – Ross Travis and Ronlin Foreman
Sound Design – Richard Newman and Jon Steinmeier
Set Design – Ronlin Foreman
Lighting Design – Jon Penalver and Skye Nickell
Stage Manager – Jon Penalver
Sound Technician – Jon Penalver
Set Painting – Jilleen Ward and Claire Burtner
Technical Directors – Aaron Simunovich, Christina Linskey and Anna Yanushkevich
Graphic Design – Ayla Bell and Ernesto Sopprani
Photography – Eric Gillet
House Managers – Reuben Alvear and KC Hyland
My Patreon Family: ZB Rayburn – John Rogers – Wendy Parkman – Judith Travis – Jesse Travis – Tom Connolly – Karen Thompsen Hall – Tarwin Stroh-Spijer – Ramune Rastonis – Edna Mira Raia – Rebecca Longworth – Sierra Camille – Phoenix Elektra – Rachel Strickland – Shannon McKenna – Mary Ritter – Melanie Pflaster – John Palcher – Ever – Nik Kanter – Snubby J – Sethward – Neil Gates – Britta Schinske – Kit and Brett Studholme – Carl H – Chelsea Tegtman – Chloe Gordon-Murer – Nancy Spillane – Michael Greco – Featherpistol – Crescent Moon Theater Productions – Samson Y Hiss – Lindsay Masset – Chris Johnston – Melissa Cisneros – Circus Mobility
GENEROUSLY FUNDED AND SUPPORTED BY THE FOLLOWING ORGANIZATIONS
San Francisco Arts Commission
NET/TEN Travel Grant
Intersection for the Arts
Zaccho Dance Theatre
Colin Thomson – Dominik Wyss – Shaun and Missy Tucker – Pamela Rand – Ayla Bell – Juliana Frick – Reuben Alvear – Howard and Sharon Henderson – Tara Malpass – David Hunt – Siga Rastonis – Vasare Rastonis – Teresa Sumiyoshi – Nettie Lane – Jilleen Ward – Doug, Cathie and Lindsey Barrows – Aviva Rose-Williams – Theresa Jones – Jonah Katz – John Gardiner – Meghan Frank – Kara Starkweather – Todd Badolato – Susan Williams – Anne Herholdt – David Weiss
What do we risk by changing our environment? Is climate change a hoax? Why should we care? Is the destruction of the environment just part of our fate? The universe is in a constant state of flux — who are we to try and say what it’s doing? These are some fundamental questions that face humanity as we stumble our way through this era of time that has been labeled by some as the Anthropocene: The era of human influence. These are huge questions, and yet, climate change polls low on the list of immediate concerns for most of the population. And this makes sense; Miami underwater in 50 years, or 100 years, or two years (depending on your sources) can’t compete with such pressing and immediate concerns as whether or not you can afford health care for your family of four while working three jobs, especially if immigrants (or AI) are going to steal those jobs. One can’t lobby against a hurricane as one can health care, or graph the finer points of where the next drought fire will start, as with economic policy. Stalling these natural forces will require a total paradigm and infrastructure overhaul. One that, sadly, we humans just may not be capable of because of powerful special interest groups whose profits are louder than our voices.
Climate change is chaotic and reverberates on an existential level that is hard to comprehend. I can see it now … A brutal nature all hopped up on CO2 goes flying off the rails and starts disregarding human divinity (AS IF!) and starts to burn and sweat us off like a fever. Pah! That’s the stuff of horror films, science fiction and The Revelations (but of course for those who believe in them, The Revelations are without doubt how the end times will happen).
One thing is for sure. The questions around climate change give rise to a plethora of feelings, fears, perspectives, ideas, solutions and denials, a/k/a, lots of talk. Talking which has a byproduct of CO2 emissions. Because this subject has so much jibber jabber, to reflect it truthfully, so does this show. The mere act of doing the show is pollution.
The core performance style of this show is the physical theatre form called bouffon. Bouffon was codified from many satirical traditions throughout history (including the medieval Feast of Fools celebration, the Satyr plays of the ancient Greeks and the Shamans of Native American tribes) by the French theatre provocateur Jacques Lecoq in the 50s and 60s. Bouffons are grotesque outsiders who view mainstream society and its hypocrisies from a distance, then enter society and magnify what they see through gratuitous ritual, song and ecstatic play.
I question whether or not someone can be truly changed by a piece of theatre, but I dream that they could and I definitely have been many times. Bouffon is the theatre form I’ve found with the greatest possibility to make people examine their most firmly held convictions and biases. It’s my belief (scientific proof pending) that the laughter elicited by the comedy in a bouffon performance opens the audience so that when the tragedy of the material is presented they are more apt to consider new perspectives. The emotional rollercoaster of this form, the extremity and vulnerability that it requires, the fact that no one is safe and every perspective will be challenged (even the creator’s) can be very humbling and disarming, which is maybe what we need a little more of when we have all retreated to and armed our “bubbles.”
This work arrives out of a four years of intense research and development. The work continues to develop organically upon touring and gaining additional perspectives, and it will continue to evolve as does the issue it strives to address an issue that is an overwhelming and daunting conundrum for all of us on this earth.
THERE’S A STORM ON THE HORIZON!
View full West Coast tour show dates and ticket info: Go!