Monday, September 29, 2008

Kickoff Photos are IN!!!

From the kickoff meeting... I had some uploading issues, so, punctual as usual...

We have some of the sacrifice, a nice picture of Brent and Mark. I call it, "Brent and Mark. With Chair."

Then there is Douglas, goofin', and the great tooth incident. There was biting, there was the loss of tooth... and then, the finding of the tooth! Brent found it as he said, "There it is, there's the bloody tooth." (There really is a tooth by Mark's heard.) And, happy ending! Just like a good little story.

My name is Jayme Clifton Halbritter. You killed my father... so now I take pictures. I'm going to try and take some, and post them, on occasion.

Production Meeting 9/27

Meeting Notes:

We briefly went over each section, and talked about how many volunteers are needed for each section, so that when rehearsals begin we can start plugging people in.

Here's the breakdown:

Preshow: 8-10. (5 characters, 2-4 shadow screen, 1 tech.)
Trail: 10-25 ( 2-10 dogs, 0-1 for Hecetate, 5-10 for islands, and 3 shadow screen)
Boat: 11-19 (2 sails, 1 mast, 8-16 oar training.)
Rocks/Serpent: 18-29 (12-15 serpent, 6-14 rocks.)
Dragon/Ram: 10 (5 dragon, 5 ram)
Harpies: 7-15
Bulls: (uncertain)
Body Parts: 10-15
Water: 8-16
Heart: 4-8
Ushers: 6-12

So obviously this is a lot of people.... so send your feelers out into the community to find passionate volunteers!

Other production notes:

~There is some concern about good lighting/sound for the preshow. We should keep this in mind, but it will probably be fixed by the following ideas:
* Doing the preshow twice, in order to allow more people to see it clearly.
* Having at least a couple islands in the area before the preshow, so that the audience is entertained while they wait.
* Having the testing done before people are allowed to sit down, thus keeping the first group of preshower-ers from getting all the best seats.

Rides: It was decided that I will be at the Bedlam before every rehearsal at 11, in order to catch anybody who needs a ride to hidden falls. The number to call for rides is: 651-353-3774.

Thanks everybody!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Images Jason and the Argonauts

Some of the above Images have been part of our early inspiration for this years show...

Barebones Kick Off 2008

The Barebones Kickoff on Friday September 19th went off without a hitch... Lots of folks came and the meeting commenced with a go around of Welcomes and Names... many old faces have come back to work on project... and some new ones... wooo whooo now for the getting down to business and the making of the puppets!!! The night ended with the scrafice of the golden fleece.... Photos from the nights event will be added soon!! Off we go!! Come check out and help with the builds Tues, Thurs 7-9pm and Saturday from 1-5. The first rehearsal is this Sunday 1-5 at Hidden Falls Park... see ya there!!!

Soozin, Co Director 2008 Fleeced:You Reap What You Sow!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

meeting notes, 17 Sept Wed


1) consequences of bad decisions; returning sovereignty to the people

2) personal sovereignty
- being your own scapegoat
- what is the legitimate source of your own power?

3) impossibility of returning home

4) Hunger --> Sowing --> Starving --> Slaughter --> Atonement
- equates imagistically to Harpies --> Bulls --> Soldiers --> Body Parts --> Sacrifice
- Hunger/Desperation turning to violence

5) Seeking Redemption for harm we have done ourselves

6) Medea's Transformation from innocent to monster

We agree that all the above themes tie together, though some of us have preference for different emphases. Little talk about no.s 5 & 6.


PRE-SHOW - Deep History
Why the Golden Fleece is Important.
Why the Dragon and its teeth are important.

Illuminated maps of islands
Hecate, goddess of crossroads, with dogs and ghosts
End of Trail: tests to enter the seating area - audience identified as Argonauts

SCENE 1 - Boat Sets Sail
Boat erected around audience.
Audience taught how to row the boat.
Gods as Politicians.

SCENE 2 - Ram + Dragon
Tree/Dragon and Fleece

SCENE 3 - Fire Bulls Sow Soldiers

Chorus that is like water transitions the scene.
Sowing of the Seeds
Raising up of Soldiers
Fight of Soldiers

SCENE 4 - the Wake
Medea and Jason kill Absyrtus and throw bodies into the wake of their ship.
(In our wake, we create destruction -- the body parts float up in the wake of us.)
Then, a Wake, and the naming of the Dead.

SCENE 5 - the Ram Sacrifice

Ram sacrifices himself.
Jason and Medea walk into the Heart.

Though dissension on this, seems to be honing down to:
- told from perspective of Golden Fleece
- Jason and Medea are characters to provide narrative through-line
- Audience = Argonauts.
- chorus exists

Idea on Islands for the Trail : Economic Collapse

That the puppeteers of the island scenes are real estate agents selling real estate. The islands are in economic collapse. The path could represent economic decline somehow, or reflect on our situation of debt / indebtedness / lack of fiscal confidence. something like this

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Storyboard Update

We divided the show into a set of panels representing beats/scenes:

Scenes 1-5

Associations with each:

- Deep History: story of the Golden Ram, story of the Dragon's Teeth,
- Electoral Spoof: Gods as Politicians

- flying ram(s) & sacrificial lambs
- illuminated maps
- islands of greek myth installations
- Hecate + dogs
- hovering Harpies
- Argonaut try-outs?

Pageant: 5 scenes bridged by Chorus of Water/Argonauts (or both):

- The audience boards the Argo and become the Argonauts

- Lively banter between Ram and Dragon
- setting: a great Golden Fleece in a live Tree

Scene 3-4 (order undetermined)
- Hunger & Harpies
- Yoking of Bulls that breathe fire and associated fire things
- Children, sown as seeds and grown as Soldiers


Scene 5:
- (boat?) Chase with severed or illuminated body parts used to distract pursuer(s)
- Calling of names

- Ram Sacrifices itself
- Illuminated Heart altar through which people walk

Hanging chads:

Some progression of Hunger --> Sowing --> Starving --> Slaughter
Harpies --> Bulls -------> Soldiers --> Body Parts

Do Jason & Medea exist as characters? How about her father & brother?

What is the role/meaning of sacrifice and how do we feel about it?

Do the Gods have a role beyond the preshow? Does the Kingdom of Colchis (the foreign, the "other") play a role?

What is the Story?
- Hunger/Desperation turning to violence
- Seeking Redemption for harm we have done ourselves
- Allegory of personal sovereignty (self knowledge, self control, personal responsibility?)
- Medea's Transformation

some further notes from Janaki:

That the barrenness is about personal sovereignty: the first barrenness that caused the sacrifice that caused the Golden Ram to come out of heaven was a trick played to gain sovereignty (can explain this further, but won't here).
For us, a contemporary audience, I automatically transform sovereignty of the realm into sovereignty over ourselves, mastery of ourselves as individuals.

In this light, the wresting of the bulls becomes wrestling personal demons; mastery over our bulls.
The Harpies are a fight with internal, personal desires. Escaping the cries of our insatiability.
The dismemberment could still be us dismembering the Body Politic because of homicidal mistakes.

Continue even in the noontime light of morning to be drawn to Arwen's lead that the show is an atonement for our mistakes, our lack of of vigilance, our inaction, our self-involvement.

Could see the Dragon representing perfect vigilance, action, and concern for another. And, as Soozin has suggested, the Fleece is the innocent that is forced to sacrifice itself as the result of all the mistakes made by the Argonauts.

The final mistake of the Argonauts is to put the Dragon, the only Moral Authority, to sleep. (How to represent this? A number of abstract possibilities. That the Fleece rips in half when it tries to leave the tree, indicating its equilibrium with the dragon. That one of the Deep History characters returns to chastise the the Fleece, such as Helle from the depths of the water. Re-enact a St George and the Dragon tableau to show an epic shift has occurred, etc.)

In this scenario, we need Jason and Medea onstage to represent the Argonauts, otherwise the audience is blamed for everything, which is both hard to communicate and unfair to them.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Barebones Halloween Extravaganza KIck Off 2008

The Barebones 2008 Halloween Extravaganza Kickoff
for Fleeced: You Reap what you Sow

Friday, September 19th @
(in the Bedlam Workshop Space)

Come and find out about this years story board, figure out what puppets you want to make, and find about performance opportunities.

The open Building workshops will be on Tues and Thursday evenings from 7-9pm and Saturdays from 1-5pm (at Bedlam)
Starting Tuesday Sept 23.-October 24th

Rehearsals are on Sundays from 12-4pm (at Hidden Falls Park in St. Paul)
Rehearsals start on Sunday September 28th.

Singing rehearsals are on Wednesdays 7pm (at Bedlam)

If you are interested in stilting in this years show, we will also be have separate stilt rehearsals (time/day yet to be determined)

This years show dates are Saturday October 25th, Sunday October 26th, Friday October 31st, and Saturday November 1st.

hope to see ya there!!!


The Barebones/ Bedlam Super Romp went off without a hitch on Saturday night!! Lots of Folks came out, at last count at the the door something like 240 folks came to see the show!!

The line up for the night included: Mark Safford with another installment of the "Adventures of Rice Boy", old timey music by "The Coke a Cola Cowboys", some fine music by Dave Hoyt, two puppet shows by Drum and Squeeze(aka olie and liz),"Disembody I" a film by experimental film meister Trevor Adams, "Fleece" a puppet show by Soozin Hirschmugl, "A Naughty Secret" by Zoe-Sommers-Hass, "Tang" by Bedlam's John Bueche & Company, Poetry by Americo, and the 5 Minute Movie, "AILENS 2" by the all-stars of Bedlam. There was also a couple of Amazing CAKE Walks thanks to AMY T., Janki and Soozin!! and an Awesome MC-- JFB whooo hooo!! PUPPETS!!!!!

A HUGE SHOUT OUT and THANKS to all who performed and helped with the door, clean up security etc... (Brent, Emily, Carey, Kat, Duane, Eric H.,Huck)


Thursday, September 11, 2008

to the press

This is what Soozin and I gave to Maren to send to the press very preliminarily. We hoped it would be enticing and accurate without pinning us down to a story we weren't yet sure of. I post it here to keep everyone in the loop.

“Fleeced: You reap what you sow” is the Halloween extravaganza ritual for 2008. Back again at Hidden Falls the Barebones crew invites you to honor your dead, to board the boat, to make some sacrifices. Based loosely on the tale of Jason and the Argonauts there should be a wild pack of dogs, harpies on stilts, fire-breathing bulls, and some hard, hard questions about murder and hunger and sacrifice.


Wednesday, September 10, 2008

emily's proposed storyboard

This is an attempted synthesis/ conglomeration of various ideas from round one of proposed storyboards. I have also included other ideas brought up at yesterday's meeting and the stranger ones from my own head.
The audience arrives at the park to look at a set of giant maps which document the central path branching into 5 or so that lead to different 'islands'. The audience, in small groups of under 20, gets to decide, group by group, which island they'd like to go to. Each island has its own lantern-lit path (scarlet lanterns?) and the groups are distracted by sirens carrying blue skull lanterns, who are children,singing an eerie version of row row row your boat, or other sea-faring nursery songs. Audience arrives at islands, which each illustrate some version of the early fleece story. The actors and puppets and music at each island could be themed to correspond to one of the islands on the Argo's journey. Cyclopes, murderous women, sirens, etc. At the island, some members of of each group are given a shred of fleece which they are told will protect them. Audience groups leaving islands are assaulted by harpies, who demand fleece, are hungry for it. Before entering the seating area for the main stage, groups must surrender their fleece to a cloaked figure. The figure's identity is ambiguous...Hecatate, Jason, Death? Audience must pass through an arch hung with long strips of red fabric, must pass into the unknown.
As people arrive to the seating area, the stage is set like a ship, rigging, mast, etc. Creaking noises come from speakers. Actors with oars emerge when audience arrives and show how to row, simple rowing songs.
Scene 1 begins when actors run down aisles with long pieces of bluish 'water' fabric and agitate it there, as the rowing takes off. 'Dancers' with rows and water are wearing some sort of black outfit with long linear muscles drawn on with white fabric paint. Maybe a black light can come on, some smoke. The journey begins and the dragon emerges from the tree, the fleece comes alive from previous, dead state. Ram wishes to leave, is sick of being hungered after, lusted at, and having no freedom of its own. What's the point of being desired if you're impossible to reach? Dynamic here, a strained relationship between dragon and ram. Dragon rages against ungrateful ram. Ram hatches a plot, lures dragon to sleep, somehow, and hides. Thus Jason sneaks in with Medea to steal teeth. Dragon is powerless for a time, without teeth, asleep. Jason and Medea steal away without fleece, didn't see it, and go to sow the seeds.
2. Medea summons and tames firey bulls and they begin to sow the seeds. The teeth leave arcs behind them as they fall, maybe streamers or something. Jason and Medea run after the bulls, at some point they lose control. Does the Ram set bulls to mutiny? Bulls' skull hooves shoot up torrents of earth and blood (water balloons?) and the fire performers do their awesome thing. Horned fireblowers emerge from behind bulls and 'scare' audience, menace Jason and Medea off stage. From the earth, the bones grow into harpies, starving women and men as dead soldiers, who hunger for the fleece as well. After all , they are born from the teeth of the dragon. Harpies scream with hunger and function as chorus to get us to next scene. Ram watches calmly from the shadows, is testing Jason and Medea. Dragon is still asleep on the sidelines.
3. With the sowing gone awry, Jason and Medea flee in the Argo and Medea and Jason butcher crewmates, audience plants with fake limbs?, and toss the pieces onto the fabric down the aisles to distract harpies from their escape. The body parts glow eerily in blacklights, are bounced around by dancers, who have returned to their fabric. The harpies are ghosts, starving half-creatures, they need more flesh to become real.
4.Harpies in flight are chasing the boat, and sirens, who are dead children, possibly, claim the body parts from under the harpies beaks. The children rush to collect them and put the body parts (which are similar or same as dragon's teeth, maybe really elongated femurs and ulnas and skulls, etc) back into dragon's mouth. Harpies, enraged at their loss, wheel off into the audience and offstage. Dragon awakes, enraged, and goes over to tree, to where Ram waits, and demands an explanation. Ram wants its freedom and Dragon decides it no longer wants to 'keep' Ram, treacherous thing that it is. Dragon renounces this world and decides to go back into tree, leave Ram to life alone. Political dialogue. Ungendered romance and renounciation, possibilities are endless. The sirens usher in the next scene.
5. Dragon has gone back into the tree, but Ram is alive, waiting, wavering between fleece and ram, between beauty and freedom. Jason and Medea sneak in and take Ram, but it cannot leave. Janaki's scene, basically. Hecate comes forward and says that the Ram cannot go home, cannot leave this life without leaving something behind, without sacrifice. Ram sacrifices self and opens the doorway, the rock/ bleeding heart become an arch hung with red fabric strips that Jason and Medea walk into. Then, ghostly figures emerge from arch, sliding between fabric, and invoke the audience to call names and sing final song. The 'veil' between the worlds here is literally represented as a veil of blood. The show could end with a trip to the river.
Some points: This is a pretty specific plan, I know, but it could be really flexible. The aesthetic stuff is obviously only what I'd like to see, but the tone and aesthetic is incredibly variable, depending on the artists involved. Political vote for Zeus stuff, banter between ram and dragon could go a lot of places!

First Storyboarding Meeting! 9/9/08


Word of the Day:

Metapsychosis: the transmigration of the soul, esp. the passage of the soul after death from a human or animal to some other human or animal body. In performance, this often refers to a being being present in multiple physical, emotional, and intellectual landscapes simultaneously. (Janaki gets 100 points for using this word casually in conversation.)

Meeting Intro:

We briefly discussed the inter-personal politics of communication, focusing primarily on what would happen to an individual's idea if they were to miss a meeting, and how we should deal with it. It was loosely agreed that if a meeting is going to be missed, it is up to the meeting-skipper to find somebody to represent their idea. This will be much easier when Rachel gets the contact sheet finished so we have everybody's phone numbers. Maybe people should email them to her....

General Thoughts on Storyboarding Process:

* It was mentioned that maybe the best way to proceed with the storyboarding is to focus on things that resonate visually as emotionally stunning moments, and see where that takes us.

*It seems important to start light, so that we aren't instantly alienated our audience in a sea of misery. Once we have won them, maybe that's the time to take them somewhere deeper? We should try to remember that this is a family show, and all ages/attention spans will be represented.

* All of the storyboards have similar scenes and visual representations of certain key elements, the main difference seems to be a difference of mood and of aesthetic.

* We emphasized the importance of focusing on an aesthetic of pageantry over theater... more singing, more movement, more large scale representative storytelling/motifs, making things larger than life.

Ideas and Visual Moments that Resonated:

* the "tree of life" with the dragon twined in the bark.
* both the dragon and the fleece/ram being able to "die" visually.
* the children being planted and becoming soldiers is a clear tiny visual/emotional arc that reverberated deeply for people.
* the harpies being representative of more than just "monster". Hunger/fear. How to emphasize this?
* the audience with oars.... maybe just a handful of people?
* shards of the fleece coming out from under the large fleece to tell the story... chorus?

Themes and Emotional Centers:
* After talking about all the different storyboarding options, we realized that the emotional center seems to be different for a lot of people. Ideas we discussed were....
* Home, how we lose it and how we come home, what prevents us from coming home.
*The Argonauts as "us"... the crucial to the storyline, make things happen, yet not a main character at all. How closely do we want the audience to identify with the Argonauts?
*How willing are we to have a clear dualism present? There is some worry that having the dragon and the fleece as central emotional characters will create this dualism. If we allow the dragon and the ram to have a real relationship (relationship tropes.... Rosencratz and Guildenstern-esque, much of this dualism will be swallowed by the grey area and contradictions of dualism that is exposed in all real relationships. No clear conclusion reached....

New Ideas:
*Bringing the election/political state into the story....
- "I'm Zeus, and I approved this message". Pre-recorded images of political ads projected on sail.
- Medea on cooking show.... cutting up the body. (Medea's brother as mutilated "body politic")
- The ram/dragon mudslinging.

New Storyboard:
We talked about having the audience enter into a space that is like a ship, and having a character lead them in unfurling the sail, etc. (Creating the ship around them... clear link between audience and Argonauts. Audi-nauts.

Things are still somewhat vague, but we seemed to agree that the center of the story should be the relationship between the fleece and the dragon. Right before we left it seemed like maybe we hadn't decided, so maybe we should revisit this?

Potential Logistical Issues:

* Using dialogue... how/when should this happen? Wireless mikes pose lots of problems, especially if more than one or two people have them. It was generally agreed that we should try to minimize dialogue, and maybe use only a few mikes for most of the speaking. This will give us a singular point of view, however. Who's voice is privileged by speaking? Especially if they are the only character speaking....


Please think about the five scenes that we will use.... each should be emotionally building on what was there before, leading us on a clear physical/emotional journey. ALSO.... any great ending scenes we can think of.


Monday, September 8, 2008

scene ideas from Janaki: The Five Ramifications

Following: notes on setting, a breakdown of scenes, and general considerations. Links included.

Notes on setting
Ram's story. Ram = narrator. Ram is trying to make the Dragon fall asleep by telling it a bedtime story.
Jason and Medea are 3/4 body size puppets, like Taymor's meerkat in Lion King. Impetuous child-figures, esp Medea is a strong and daring girl-kid.
That all of the humans appear painted in lines like the legs of Greeks on vases.

title idea --> "Ramifications of Choice"

Prologue: Story of the Fleece, a shadow story told by the fire
Scene 1: Dragon guarding the Fleece (dragon = snakeball). The Dead Fleece speaks, trying to convince the Dragon to take a nap.
Scene 2: Sowing the Fields. The Fleece gets up and goes to first scene of Jason's story: sowing the fields. Bulls of Fire, with hooves that are the skulls of men. Jason and Medea are 3/4 -size bunraku puppets.
Scene 3: Escape, Murder, Ships. Jason and Medea escape on the backs of Harpies. They see that the King gives chase. Medea butchers her brother. The field is strewn with his pulsating, alive body parts. The King's ship moves through the field, surveying the the body parts.
Scene 4: Wanderings. Jason and Medea litter the field with their deeds. They are repeatedly turned away from land by the body parts of Medea's brother.
Scene 5: Jason and Medea puppets enter the setting of the Sleepless Dragon and the (dead) Golden Fleece, liberating the Fleece, which is carried off in person form on the back of Jason the puppet. Hooray! Liberation of the fleece!
The Ram is stopped from going home. The shadow screen on top of the pavilion blazes to life. It shoots rays of fire.
Helles: You murdered me. You cannot go home.
Ram: Then where can I go? What can I do?
Helles: Atone.
Ram: How?
Helles: Sacrifice.
Ram: That is the only way?
Helles: Once a year, on All Saints' Day, you will cross through the door from the air to the earth, and you will be home, like a child, innocent, who comes home without thinking, who knows home without thought. A year of darkness for one day when the door of your desire opens to you.
(The shadow screen goes dark. The fire remains burning.)
Ram pulls out his own tools of sacrifice and sacrifices himself. Jason and Medea witness.
Ram's blood pours over the stone on which the Ram died. It illuminates, showing itself to be a heart.
Jason and Medea walk together through and into the blood.
On the shadow screen atop the Pavilion, the Ram is encircled by hands and caressed. Final song.

- place/location of ram and dragon (Tree of Life / Cave of Shadows)
- that the Golden Fleece is the narrator; a fundamental communication with the dead
- hand puppets, made by audience?, function as representative of the people - to vote, take sides like in a boxing ring, or serve as arm bands to buy drinks
- function of dreams; that all the world is an operation of dream powers, and that sleep is a kind of home
- comparative mythologies:
- Ram/Lamb of God; Ram and Dragon in Chinese Zodiac; Cave / Tree of Life
- Bulls episode with skeletons ---> Mexican Day of Dead
- Dismembered Parts - milagros, Horus/Osiris, Coyote
- Blood sacrifice / Grand Guignol

Soozin's Version of the Story using Emotions for the Arch

Told from the point of view that the audience is the Argonauts/ Crew and everthing in the main part of the show is an island or encounter that happens occurs to them...

PreShow/ Prologue

Histories--- retelling of the story from the point of view of scraficial Sheep? Some type of Shadow show and storytelling.. I liked janke's idea of it being lit by fire... old school retelling of this epic tale an abbreviated version of the trial and tribulations and a way to foreshadow what is to come....

Travel-- Where have we gone? What have we seen?
Illuminated Maps line the path way showing islands that the argo? has traveled to travel?/ maybe there are small/short puppet shows of what life or people of the islands are like? Singing sirens/ birds w/ ladies heads/ cyclopses/ giants smashing small toy men/ dragons/ etc....

At the end of tunnel people are tested for their wit? Strength? Agility? to see if they would make worthy crew members head toseating area which is some ways resembles a Giant Greek boat complete with mast/and figure head which could be HERA???

Main Show: Chapter 1

SET SAIL ANTICIPATION OF THINGS TO COME dance of the oars men/ setting of the sails/ lowering of all the rigging making the ship sea worthy learning a SEA/Rowing Song/ Paddling Rowing/ teaching the actions maybe there is a argonaut/ child? Adult? that sits on the outside of the hey bales and teaches the line of audience members how to row... and helps them with this???

As the boat oars begin there is some sort of sheet fabric that moves very water like and under it emerges the Chorus/isadora duncan dancing ladies-- resembling and moving like water. " my idea of dancing is to leave my body free to the sunshine, to feel my sandaled feet on the earth....of all thousands of figures of greek sculpture, basreliefs and vases, there is not one but is in exquisite bodily proportion and harmony of movement. This sould not be possible unless the artist of that were accustomed to see always about them the beautiful moviing human forms. I came to greece to study the ancient art, but above all to to live in the land which produced these wonders, and when I say "to live" I mean to dance." isadoraduncan statement on arrival in greece, 1903)... sing us the story of how we came to be traveling upon this very sea

Chapter Two Who is watching US? FEAR/ UNCERTAINTY

This seen is show as a small distance sceen with characters as the Gods seen from the distance... very far away yet, shown through viedo... live feed?? on a big screen maybe the biggest said on the BOat?? We are privilage to over hearing the stories or plots of the Gods???? as they talk about our the boat and crews possible out comes...

Chapter Three STARVATION/
what are we longing hungry for and why can't we fill this hunger? HARPIE Sceen in which the shadow and screams of our own terrors come to life... HARPIE drop from the trees unto the audience, come in as a group from different sides come for the argonauts Screaming/ Smelling/ Crazy movement... how do we quell them and put them to rest to ease???

Chorus/Water dance/ Song

Chapter Four Killing to Quell the HUNGER within?

Battle ? Fight for the fleece/ Hydra - that what rises up must fall


Chapter Five Sowing the Seeds?

Fire Breathing bulls sow seeds/ but what they sow is not what they intended to reap? Rising of the those that have fallen in battle before.... skeleton Soldiers rising out of the leaves !!! in face off for battle.... are they comming for us??? is their an argonaut inthe boat that throws in a stone that makes them all chase and b attle eachother and then is there the glowing body parts that surface around our boat... the remains of teh day.. of the fighting.... do they come together to from a giant??? a glowing skeleton that we must pay our atonement to??????

Chapter six
The Ram and the Dragon...Who is sacrafised by whom???

how did this tale come to be true? Can we ever return HOME AGAIN???

Calling of the names whom do we remember?

* also there are some vauge thoughts about using childern's songs such as

Ships across the Ocean, Ships across the Sea, Captain, Captain you can't catch me??? not sure where this goes exactally??

amy's visions

just two scenes came to me.
1. opens in a dark forest, a giant statue of hecatate half hidden by wild vines and serpents and other primal things. she has two black wolfhound dogs, alive, restrained on a leash, fire at her feet and in her hands. Medea appears, called to her in a trance, deep intuition on her part that hecatate has something she needs but she does not know what it is yet. She falls at the feet of the statue and hecatate gives her gifts of magic potions and items imbued with powerful sorcery. She has chosen medea to act out a role in the life of the world as it is, and Medea is totally entranced and certain of her calling. Jason appears in his searching for adventure and power, the fleece. He is following his own selfish will and desire, trying to fill an emptyness he feels and fears in himself, and he has convinced the most powerful warriors from all the lands to join him. hecatate has a plan for him, and has Medea fall in love with him, to help him and capture his heart for herself.
A giant dark shadow ghost ship slowly appears from the depths of the forest and jason is excited to fight it. a monster is provoked and a battle ensues that slowly escalates and the warriors find themselves way over their heads because their collective egos won't let them quit and accept that there is a force more powerful than themselves. Their end is near and they become overwhelmed with fear. . harpies appear, circling in the eves, screaming and seeming to come closer and closer but never totally reveal themselves. In desperation the warriors start grabbing at things to sacrifice to appease. Sacrifices do no good but they keep on doing it in desperation, anything to protect themselves and avoid the end of their own lives, which in my own opinion they asked for. Finally Medea is able to use her powerful magic to fix the situation for a time. But Jason does not thank her, does not learn a lesson, and heads of to the next adventure in his quest for the fleece.
more adventures happen. More monsters, more sorcery.
2. At the end, Jason will leave Medea, although he has taken her help and "love", which anyway he never asked for, but she willingly gave because of her feelings for him, her need to win his love in return and to posess him. He falls for another woman and desires to marry her, and this wedding is planned. But of course Medea becomes overwhelmed with jelousy , and uses her magic to curse the wedding gown so that the wearer will go up in flames as soon a she puts it on. It happens. End.

Audience members are given various maps(one for each group so they can stay with their friends) Islands have been made in miniature, scattered about the site. Each has its unique history and gods. This serves to introduce people to the concept that they have been invited to an adventure that they will be a part of in the main show. I thought it may be interesting to incorporate small hand puppets and marionettes into the islands' landscapes, maybe they could tell the story of the island, exaggerating its accomplishments and the power of its gods.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Arwen's storyboard suggestions Sunday night meeting

The audience is given sheep puppets. They are lead on a journey through the woods where they encounter many sheep piñatas, some are actually real people, some are full of seed, some of blood. Along this path, they also see the children dressed as Argonauts (whatever that means). They are occasionally stopped and told they cannot continue until they sacrifice a sheep at which point they have to give up their puppets. They pass or pass through many maps which help them know how far they have traveled. There is music which suggests water to help them understand they are on a ship. They also encounter the harpies coming out of the trees. Potential for other tree dwelling creatures.

Medea is making potions and worshipping Hecate who is a giant goddess who runs through the woods with dogs and carries a staff of snakes which ball up and huddle and separate in a slithery magical way. There is a pile of sheep heads of different scales and the piñata ruins and fleece in the background. The chorus of Isadora Duncan dancer/singers helps to tell the story a little.

SCENE 1 — HONOR YOUR MOTHER The children are all stranded and thirsty off the boat and stuck pushing the boat and trying to sail it, they try sacrificing a sheep but are still stuck. The sheep parts end up on the pile. Hecate comes and tells them to honor their mother or they will never get anywhere. They realize the boat is their mother and they carry a beautiful boat decorated like the earth and entreat the audience to help them honor their mother and pass the boat back towards the river. The chorus of Isadora Duncan dancer/singers helps to tell the story and transition us forward in time.

SCENE 2 — PLANTING THE SEEDS AMONG THE FIRE BREATHING BULLS Adults dressed same as kids in last scene get a potion from Medea which gives them the strength to brave the fire breathing bulls. This is the opportunity for burning bulls of all sizes and bulls breathing fire and general fiery things. The adults plant little children as seeds and then out grow soldiers and there is an enormous battle in which everyone ends dead and in the pile with the sheep stuff. The chorus of Isadora Duncan dancer/singers helps to tell the story a little.

SCENE 3 — WE GET THE FLEECE AND IT IS NOT WHAT WE THOUGHT An enormous serpent talks to the fleece pile. The adults dressed as Argonauts come with a potion from Medea which makes the serpent sleep. The adults try to carry off the golden fleece and find that it is a pile of carcasses and not the beautiful thing that they had hoped. The pile moves in a slow parade lump downstage and disintegrates. The adults take what they can. The chorus helps tell this story.

SCENE 4 — MEDEA MURDERS, YOU CANNOT RETURN AFTER MURDER This is the chorus’ big moment. They tell the story in cliff-note style of Jason and Medea leaving, Medea chopping up her brother (giant body parts get strewn on stage) of Medea killing the king (more body parts) of Medea killing Jason’s wife (maybe flaming wedding dress) of Medea killing her children (more body parts). None of this is gruesomely acted out, instead there is flow-y interpretive dance punctuated by body parts thrown onto the stage. There is a group song in which we learn that you cannot return home after killing, that your only redemption is to honor the dead. Everyone is holding oars upright with part of paintings on each side. They are held together to make a single image painting depicting violence at sea which they ultimately turn around to reveal a picture of crops and growing things.

SCENE 5 — PART THE VEIL, HONOR THE DEAD, CALL THE NAMES The audience is invited to notice the veil is parted between the worlds of the living and dead, to honor the dead by calling their names. Body parts previously strewn about the stage rise into one human form strung from trees and puppeted.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Brainstorming Meeting, 9/2/08

Meeting Notes, Tuesday September 2nd.

"the end of imagination"

This was our last big brainstorming meeting before the storyboarding starts getting serious!

General Notes:

1. We reviewed whats been discussed at previous meetings, and emphasized the need to find a way to make this a Halloween show, not just an epic adventure, and somehow bring the focus back to nature and grieving and the life cycle of the earth.

2. In open discussion, we realized that there might be a good connection between the story and whats happening in The Republic of Georgia today, and that U.S. foreign policy could connect as well.... this could be done thru:
* Using the sacrificial sheep/lamb as metaphor for U.S. public/troops.
* Jason throwing the rock into the skeletons so that they fight themselves could be a good example of political government.
3. Everyone is very excited about the idea of using the space differently... maybe using the trees, or playing the show in the round.

Stories and Ideas that Resonated:
* The Harpies could be a plural being; all identical, but each with a different "gimmick" or power. Maybe they represent hunger? What are they hungry for, and how would we satiate it?
* Maybe we should examine the culture we are focusing on. What if we worked w/ Hispanic and Aztec goddesses instead of more (or exclusively) European mythology?
* The story of Heceta running through the woods with her hell hounds could be a great way to use the dog ideas.
* The portion of the story where Jason and the other adventurers give up hope in the desert and the shepherd gods tell them to "honor their mother" by
carrying the boat to water. The boat is the mother because she carries them in her womb and groans when they labor. Connection to mother earth?
* Medea is a fascinating character: she represents loss and grief and total rejection. Can we find more here?
* For the prologue, it might be really cool to have the audience travel through a tunnel where the different islands of the adventure could be represented... different adventures, different worlds, different experiences.
* A conversation between the sleepless dragon and the golden fleece maybe trying to get dragon to sleep?
* Medea's brother's dead body spread across the field.
* Scale: maybe having many different sized boats, maybe nothing is "human sized" except the sheep and the chorus? Children as Argonaunts....
* Using the chorus in new and different ways (more singing/choreography). Isadora Duncan style movement and costumes.
* The overlapping histories and stories that create history.... how to represent this?
* Better to be builders than soldiers.... the story of the five saved "earth born men" who create Thebes.

* "If you commit murder, you cannot go back." How do we find forgiveness and peace with the bad things that we have done? (sheep could tie in here)
* Food: the slaughterhouse. Excessive resources being squandered. The sheep pile up in center of playing space. "people have to die in order to get the golden fleece. What is the fleece? what does it represent?

Images that Resonated:

* Hydra as a creature formed of snakes or skulls.
* The audience having lamb hand puppets.
* Centaurs.
* Medea's brother's body being large pieces that can glow and/or physically block the action of the play. Physical reminders of sins past...
* The birds dive bombing the ship, getting stuck in the shields.
* The boat being passed over the audience.
* Fire breathing bulls.
* Hanging pinatas or people from the trees.
* A river of bodies, with people dressed all in black except for the body part they represent. Cool choreography opportunity?
* WATER: how will we represent this? maybe using multiple objects to create a single image/many images. The example given was oars (stolen from the Olympic opening ceremony).
* the gods placed on top of the pavillion, watching the action. (Big Brother?)
* Lantern puppets. Maybe coming together to create shapes/objects... snakes, etc. Snake Ball?
* Isadora Duncan costume w/ lights in hands or on costumes.
* Flesh flower.
* The chorus w/ portable projection or shadow screens.
* Men wrapped in leather and hung from the trees when they died.
* Bike puppets!

Things to Think About:
* Difficulties of using space differently: cars on the road? Moving action?
* How should the sheep sacrifice play out?
* We want to tell the story in five seven minute sections... minus the preshow. Keep in mind this is 35 minutes!!

THANKS FOR A GOOD MEETING, EVERYBODY! Next meeting: Sunday the 7th at 5:30 at Hidden Falls.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Story Board Meetings Updated

There are some changes in the Story Board Times Please Note the following Changes!!!

Tuesday Sept 2nd 7pm Soozin's House

Sunday Sept 7th 5:30pm Hidden Falls Park (Imagining in the Space)

Tuesday Sept 9th 7pm Soozin's House

Wednesday Sept 10th 7pm Arwen's House

After this set of meetings we will decide where we are at and see if we can come up with a basic storyboard for the kick off. We are hoping to the rough skeleton solidfied before Arwen leaves on the 12th of September..... here we go Fall is on the Make