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Happiness Is A Warm Gun

Happiness is a Warm Gun (2014)

Happiness is a Warm Gun (2014)

Happiness Is A Warm Gun
a devised work of The LIDA Project

This six-part performance exploration of gun culture and violence deconstructs the American gun debate. From freedom to fear, our complex relationship with firearms, and the role they play in our society is one of the most polarizing issues of our generation. From the inside it has become a cornerstone of the ideological “Culture War” with players on both sides staking uncompromising positions, making broad claims and dehumanizing anyone who may disagree with their perspective. From the outside it looks like a high-stakes game being played by people with endless resources, who play loose with the rules and only let you play if you buy into their brand.

It is a game.

A trivial pursuit where we chase one another around in circles gathering facts and assembling parts and pieces in a race to win the grand prize- the right to call our opponent wrong. The right to call ourselves true american.

This is where the LIDA Project’s exploration begins. With a circle…

“We’re losing that level of intimacy in American theater. The fourth wall is becoming a fourth cinderblock wall where that connection with the audience isn’t as tangible as it used to be.”
– Tommy Sheridan

Production History
October 10 – December 20, 2014 : site specific residences :: Denver, CO

Media Coverage
LIDA Project performances bring gun discussions into living rooms – The Denver Post
The LIDA Project takes aim with Happiness is a Warm Gun – Westword

The Company (Direction)
Carol Bloom
Robin Davies
Nancy Flanagan
Sinjin Jones
Erika Kae
Tommy Sheridan
Kenny Storms

Ensemble
Kenneth Berba
Logan Custer
Dell Domnik
Caty Herrick
Sinjin Jones
Erika Kae
Ren Kolozak
Iona Leighton
Jihad Milhem
J. Edward Nelson
Ben Turk
Madison Ritter

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The Works

Part I: Raw
Three soldiers from different eras in American history find themselves on common ground as they explore the existential reasons for their meeting. Directed by Carol Bloom with performances by Ren Kolozak, Jihad Milhem, Ben Turk, & Madison Ritter.

Part II: The Happy Couple
The Gods intervene in this chapter to manipulate a couple who believe their lust for power entitles them to happiness. Drected by Nancy Flanagan with performances by Dell Domnik, Caty Herrick, Iona Leighton, & J. Edward Nelson.

Part III: Kamikaze
Reality TV comes to the living room with this high-energy work about sensationalism and extremes. Directed by Sinjin Jones with performances by Caty Herrick, Sinjin Jones, Ren Kolozak, & Madison Ritter.

Part IV: Mind the Machina
A young man is trying to discover the keys to a better life and takes a journey into a world of madness. Directed by Erika Kae with performances by Kenneth Berba, Logan Custer, Iona Leighton, & Ben Turk.

Part V: Between The Middle
Two people attempt to play a game of chess but mistrust leads to a debate on rules and strategy. Directed by Kenny Storms with performances by Caty Herrick, Erika Kae, & Ben Turk.

Part VI: Beep
Following a tragic event, a couple struggles to reconcile personal beliefs with reality. Directed by Robin Davies with performances by Dell Domnik, Iona Leighton, and J. Edward Nelson.

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Auto da Fé

Trina Magness and Dan O'Neill in Auto da Fé  (2012)

Trina Magness and Dan O’Neill in Auto da Fé (2012)

Auto da Fé
An original adaptation of the book by Elias Canetti by Rebecca Gorman O’Neill.

A twisted creation developed by The LIDA Project ensemble, playwright Rebecca Gorman, and director Brian Freeland. Manipulations of darkness and light and juxtapositions of ghastly imagery help to re-imagine Canetti’s breakthrough 1935 work about a lone recluse and his infinite library of books.

Production History
May 11 – June 2, 2012: work | space :: Denver, CO

Awards
Best New Work (Rebecca Gorman O’Neill), True West Awards Nomination
Best Actor in a Drama (Dan O’Neill), True West Awards Nomination

Media Coverage
LIDA Project’s surreal Auto da Fé – The Denver Post
The Sound and The Fury – Westword

The Company
Producers: Brian Freeland, Steven J. Deidel & The LIDA Project
Direction: Brian Freeland
Words / Dramaturgy: Rebecca Gorman O’Neill
Production Stage Manager: G. Austin Allen
Lighting Design: Steven J. Deidel / Anna R. Kaltenbach
Scenic Design: David Lafont
Projection Design: Steven J. Deidel / Ryan Gaddis
Costume Design: Hart DeRose
Sound Design: Brian Freeland
Associate Sound Design / Operator: Anson Nicholson
Associate Lighting Design: Tommy Sheridan

Ensemble
Dan O’Neill: Kien
Trina Magness: Therese
Robin Davies: Doorman / Fischerle
Lorenzo Sariñana: George / Brute / Beggar / Others

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Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep

Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep (2011)

Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep (2011)

Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep
a devised work of The LIDA Project*

The LIDA Project’s 6-part award winning epic on health, care, mortality and dying in the United States originally premiered in December of 2011 in a unique collaboration between the LIDA Project and a group of guest directors and community leaders. The work was environmentally designed and performed in private residences.

Production History
December 02 – December 17, 2011 : site specific residences :: Denver, CO
January 27 – February 11, 2012 :site specific residences :: Denver, CO

Awards
Special Achievement – Denver Post Ovation Award

Media Coverage
LIDA health-care epic: Home theater for what ails us – The Denver Post
Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep tackles health, care, death and dying in the USA – Westword

The Company
Direction: Robin Davies / Brian Freeland / Josh Hartwell / Jaime Lujan / Brenda Cook Ritenour / Kate Roselle / Tommy Sheridan / Kenny Storms
Artistic Director: Brian Freeland
Dramaturgy: Rebecca Gorman O’Neill
Movement: Tonya Malik-Carson
Scenic Design: Amelia Charter
Production Assistant: Laura Lounge

Ensemble
Rhea Amos, Meg Chamberlain, Hart DeRose, Nancy Flanagan, Michelle Hurtubise, Madeleine Joyce, Sonia Justl, Deanna Lowman, Heidi Pachner, Lorenzo Sariñana, Stefin Woolever, & Ryan Wuestewald

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The Works

The Soldier
The Soldier maneuvers through a recent Iraq War veterans struggles to care for herself and her relationships while her PTSD and grief from the war spin into a sadistic health insurance game show. Directed by Tommy Sheridan with performances by Rhea Amos, Hart DeRose, Nancy Flanagan, Michelle Hurtubise, Madeleine Joyce, Heidi Pachner, Stefin Woolever, and Ryan Wuestewald.

The Addict
The Addict is a cyclical spiral of losing control and asking for help. It grapples with both tangible and systemic addictions and whether or not we have the agency to choose our own paths. Directed by Kate Roselle and Kenny Storms with performances by Nancy Flanagan, Madeleine Joyce, Deanna Lowman, Heidi Pachner, Lorenzo Sariñana, and Stefin Woolever.

The Survivor
An exploration of how we grapple with death–both losing those we love and dealing with the knowledge of our own. Directed by Jaime Lujan with performances by Rhea Amos, Hart DeRose, Michelle Hurtubise, Madeleine Joyce, Lorenzo Sariñana, and Ryan Wuestewald.

The Middleman
An examination of the difficult choices that individuals have to make on health + care in a world of 7 billion people. Directed by Robin Davies with performances by Rhea Amos, Hart DeRose, Michelle Hurtubise, Heidi Pachner, and Ryan Wuestewald.

The Immigrant
An exploration of alternative medicine, cultural assimilation, and the red tape beaurocrtic hoops we have to jump through. Directed by Brenda Cook Ritenour with performances by Hart DeRose, Michelle Hurtubise, Deanna Lowman, and Lorenzo Sariñana.

The Patient
The Patient is a poetic and lyrical exploration of the ins outs ups downs of a person’s final moments and how hospice and its workers provide support to that person and their relatives. “What’s more important than our final moment,” one patient asks. Death responds, “Them.” Directed by Josh Hartwell with performances by Nancy Flanagan, Madeleine Joyce, Deanna Lowman, Heidi Pachner, and Stefin Woolever.

* Development collaborators: Rhea Amos, Meg Chamberlain, Amelia Charter, Robin Davies, Hart DeRose, Nancy Flanagan, Brian Freeland, Josh Hartwell, Michelle Hurtubise, Madeleine Joyce, Sonia Justl, Laura Lounge, Deanna Lowman, Jaime Lujan, Tonya Malik-Carson, Rebecca Gorman O’Neill, Heidi Pachner, Brenda Cook Ritenour, Lorenzo Sariñana, Kate Roselle, Tommy Sheridan, Kenny Storms, Stefin Woolever, & Ryan Wuestewald

 

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Justin Bieber Meets Al Qaeda

Justin Bieber Meets Al Qaeda (2011)

Justin Bieber Meets Al Qaeda (2011)

Justin Bieber Meets Al Qaeda
a devised work of The LIDA Project*

This original LIDA collaborative work inspired by Max Fritch’s The Firebugs and Albert Camus’s The Just, focuses on American pop culture and attitudes a decade after the Al Qaeda attacks on the United States. An irreverent, bombastic, and controversial examination of American politics and culture post 9-11.

Production History
September 9 – October 8, 2011: work | space :: Denver, CO

Awards
Best Multimedia Integration (Steven J. Deidel) -Denver Post Ovation Award
Best Lighting (Steven J. Deidel) – Denver Post Ovation Award Nomination
Best Sound (Kenny Storms & Max Peterson)– Denver Post Ovation Award Nomination

Media Coverage
Art from the ashes: A decade later, great art inspired by 9/11 is rare
Photo call: Opening night for new LIDA Project
The Terror, the Terror!
The Denver Post Fall Arts Preview

The Company
Producers: Brian Freeland, Steven J. Deidel & The LIDA Project
Direction: Brian Freeland
Dramaturgy: Rebecca Gorman O’Neill
Lighting / Projection Design: Steven J. Deidel
Sound Design: Max Peterson & Kenny Storms
Costume Design: Annette Westerby
Associate Lighting Design: Anna R. Kaltenbach
Associate Lighting Design / Lighting Programmer: G. Austin Allen
Projection Associate / Content Creation: Ryan Gaddis
Pixel Twister: Joe Deats
Camera Operators / Video Technicians: Tommy Sheridan & Alex Polzin
LIVE Sand Artist: Amelia Charter

Ensemble
Patrick Balai: Homeland Security / George W. Bush
Robin Davies: White
Hart DeRose: Anna Lucia
Dan O’Neill: Osama Bin Ladin
Safa Samiezade-Yazd: The Chorus
Matthew Schultz: Sadam Hussain / Bieber
Ryan Wuestewald: Wilson

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* Development collaborators: Robin Davies, Hart DeRose, Brian Freeland, & Matthew Schultz. Additional collaboration from Steven J. Deidel, Rebecca Gorman O’Neill, Dan O’Neill, & Kenny Storms

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The Anonymous Mr. W.

The Anonymous Mr. W. (2005)

The Anonymous Mr. W. (2005)

The Anonymous Mr. W
a devised work of The LIDA Project* based on Georg Büchner’s Woyzeck

Inspired by Georg Büchner’s unfinished masterpiece, Woyzeck, The LIDA Project reinterprets the story of a young soldier returning from the horrors of war. Reality bends in the unsteady world of this soldier’s mind as he grapples with a society in which he no longer belongs. Originally written in the 1830’s and never finished, Büchner left modern literature with one of its first anti-heroes. This is the portrait of an Everyman who descends into madness and murder.  The Anonymous Mr. W brings this story of war and loss with a vengeance into the post-modern dialogue.

It’s up to audiences to interpret for themselves the hula hoop, the vaudevillian routine, the dominatrix doctor, the autopsy on a ticklish cadaver with sand for blood. – The Denver Post

Production History
December 1, 2005: Mattie’s House of Mirrors :: Denver, CO
December 8, 2005: University of Colorado :: Boulder, CO
December 16 – 18, 2005: Stage Left :: Chicago, IL
December 12 – 13, 2008: BINDERY | space :: Denver, CO

Media Coverage
“Anonymous” hits the road – The Denver Post

Company (2005)
Direction: Brian Freeland
Scenic Design: Brian Freeland
Costume Design: Nissa Almquist
Original Sound Composition: Paul Cure
Sound Design: Brian Freeland
Projection Design: Brian Freeland

Ensemble (2005)
Catherine Duquette
Jacob T. Morehead
Cole Schneider
Matthew Schultz

Company (2008)
Direction: Brian Freeland
Assistant Direction: Miriam Eric Suzanne
Scenic Design: Brian Freeland
Costume Design:Julie Rada / Matthew Schultz
Original Sound Composition: Paul Cure
Sound Design: Brian Freeland
Projection Design: Brian Freeland

Ensemble (2008)
Julie Rada
Matthew Schultz

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* Development collaborators: Nissa Almquist, Robin Davies, Hart DeRose, Catherine Duquette, Brian Freeland, Jacob T. Morehead, Julie Rada, Cole Schneider, & Matthew Schultz.

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Iphigenia Crash Land Falls on the Neon Shell That Was Once Her Heart

Iphigenia Crash Land Falls on the Neon Shell That Was Once Her Heart (2004)

Iphigenia Crash Land Falls on the Neon Shell That Was Once Her Heart (2004)

Iphigenia Crash Land Falls on the Neon Shell That Was Once Her Heart
by Caridad Svich

Blending sex, death, fame, drugs and love into a theatrical paste, playwright Caridad Svich’s work imagines a post-modern world that has changed little from the cold calculations and moral machinations of Greek society. Blending original text with modernist twists and stories of murder and mayhem south of the border, Svich creates mesmeric motion, pummeling every sense with dance-beat and drug-tinged escapism.

“Caridad’s impressive language is full of poetry with a grounded concrete quality that reminds me of the wonderful rootedness of William Carlos Williams. In the dramatic rules of the Svich universe everything is possible.”
– Matthew Maguire,
TheatreForum


Production History

October 22 – December 3, 2004: BINDERY | space :: Denver, CO

Awards
Best Sound Design (Brian Freeland) – Denver Post Ovation Award Nomination
Best Costume Design (Michelle Baldwin) – Denver Post Ovation Award Nomination

Company
Direction: Brian Freeland
Assistant Direction: Jessica Posner
Technical Director: Wolf Butler
Stage Manager: Sarah Hoover
Scenic Design: Wolf Butler
Costume Design: Michelle Baldwin
Lighting Design: Jacob M. Welch
Sound Design: Brian Freeland
Projection Design: Brian Freeland
Properties Design: Steven Gibson
Live Projection Mix: Robin Davies / Brian Freeland
Live Camera: Marcus Loftin

Ensemble
Nissa Almquist: Iphigenia
Jacob Morehead: Achilles
Terry Burnsed: General Adolfo/ Fresa Girl / Virtual MC / Soldier X / General’s Ass
Lisa Mumpton: Camila/ Hermaphrodite Prince
Hart DeRose: Violeta Imperial
Matthew Korda: Newscaster / Fresa Girl / Orestes/ Virgin Puta
Matthew Schultz: Fresa Girl

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Bingo Boyz: Columbine

Bingo Boyz: Columbine (2004)

Mike Holzer & Brian E. Lewis in Bingo Boyz: Columbine (2004). Photo by Eric Webber.

Bingo Boyz: Columbine
a devised work of The LIDA Project*

The trust among the ensemble is evident in the cohesive performances and their telling choices, providing a context for Harris and Klebold’s actions that de-sensationalize the event and re-sensitize us to the common, everyday toxic ingredients that created this explosive recipe.
– Bob Bows, Variety

Production History
March 12 – May 1, 2004: BINDERY | space :: Denver, CO

Awards
Best New Work – Denver Post Ovation Award
Best Younger Actor (Max Posner) – Denver Post Ovation Award
Best New Work of 2004 – Out Front

Company
Direction: Robin Davies
Dramaturgy: Tami Canaday
Scenic Design: Robin Davies
Costume Design: Ensemble
Lighting Design: Wolf Butler
Sound Design: Tyler Potts
Sound Composition: Paul Cure
Properties Design: Steve Gibson
Projection Design: Brian Freeland
Research: Jen French

Ensemble
Jackie Billotte, Heather Day, Hart DeRose, Mike Holzer, Mike Jones, Kate Lauer, Brian E. Lewis, Amelia Mauro, Phil Newsom, Jessica Posner, Max Posner, Sue Rock, Matthew Schultz, Ashley Scott, & Ken Witt

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* Development collaborators: Jackie Billotte, Tami Canaday, Robin Davies, Heather Day, Hart DeRose, Brian Freeland, Jen French, Mike Holzer, Mike Jones, Kate Lauer, Brian E. Lewis, Amelia Mauro, Phil Newsom, Jessica Posner, Max Posner, Sue Rock, Matthew Schultz, Ashley Scott, Jadelynn Stahl, & Ken Witt