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

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


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.


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

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

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


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



Our Town

Our Town (2001). Photo: Eric Weber

Sara Casperson & Brian E. Lewis in Our Town (2001). Photo: Eric Weber

Our Town
by Thornton Wilder

Production History
September 14 – October 20, 2001: BINDERY | space :: Denver, CO

The Company
Direction: Brian Freeland
Assistant Direction: kryssi wyckoff martin
Stage Management: Brandy Qualls
Movement / Choreography: Robin Davies
Scenic Design: Brian Freeland
Lighting Design: Brian Billings
Sound Design: Jeremiah Lyman Moore
Costume Design: Carrie Wyatt
Publicity: Melanie Mayner

David C. Riley: Stage Manager
Dane Torbenson: Dr. Gibbs
Nancy Flanagan: Mrs. Gibbs
Brian E. Lewis: George Gibbs
Alexandra Trow: Rebecca Gibbs
Brian Thompson: Mr. Webb
Karen Kargel: Mrs. Webb
Chandler Gibbons: Wally Webb
Sara Casperson: Emily Webb
Dan Mundell:Professor Willard
Kelley Wade: Mrs. Soames
Robin Davies: Constable Warren
Chris Hampton: Si Crowell/Joe Crowell, Jr.
James Christian Villarreal: Howie Newsome
Dell Domnik: Simon Stimson
Thomas O’Connor: Joe Stoddard
Cristofer Lix: Sam Craig
Josh Hicks: Baseball Player
Tamara Bradley: Chorus
Tami Canaday: Chorus
Haley Gibbons: Chorus
Carrie Wyatt: Chorus