In the News: New Paradise Laboratories’ The Adults

1/3: New Paradise Laboratories’ The Adults. Photo by www.plate3photography.com.
2/3: New Paradise Laboratories’ The Adults. Photo by www.plate3photography.com.
3/3: Actors rehearsing The Adults. Photo by Camilla Dely.

Part of the 2014 Fringe Festival presented by FringeArts, New Paradise Laboratories’ The Adults is a truly collaborative theater piece—merging original and new ensemble members, music composition by Bhob Rainey (2013 Pew Fellow), set design by Matt Saunders (2014 Pew Fellow), and the influence of Anton Chekhov and painter Eric Fischl.

Supported by The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, The Adults explores the not-so-hidden darkness of human nature and its impact on the natural world. Six adults and one invisible visitor gather at a lake house in the woods, their cruelties demonstrated through highly physical theater and the pairing of ominous sound and set design. Since its world premiere at Painted Bride Art Center on September 3, The Adults has received rave reviews. Performances run through September 14.

For The New York Times, critic Ben Brantley describes the action of the play as “games, both sporting and erotic…rendered in various body-contorting pas de deux, in which civilized and primal impulses seem to do battle.” Read more >

“Nasty, beautiful, ugly, thought-provoking, and hypnotic,” writes Wendy Rosenfield for The Philadelphia Inquirer. “Matt Saunders’ set and projections offer a Philip Johnson-style modernist dream…beneath the menacing eyes of an enormous taxidermied bear. Bhob Rainey’s fuzzy, squealing sound design, all unsettled agitation, underscores the disconnect between the people and their surroundings.” Read more >

Lew Whittington of the Huffington Post praises New Paradise Laboratories’ bold experimentation: “unflinching as a theater company willing to experiment with high-wire concepts, kinetic visuals, cinematic sound design, integrating ‘physical theater’ and character choreography to conjure fantastical stage worlds that challenge safe theater conventions.” Read more >

Philebrity says The Adults is “highly physical movement work that provokes a rapturous discomfort from way deep in your gut…onstage happenings so astonishing they attain the level of hallucination or illusion.” Read more >

The Adults has received praise from a number of additional outlets, including NewsWorks, Fringe Review, Phindie, and the Broad Street Review.


References

Two recently completed Center-supported projects have released publications documenting artistic collaborations and community engagement processes.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Tony-nominated actress and playwright Anna Deavere Smith is founding director of the Institute on the Arts and Civic Dialogue, a center for artistic excellence addressing social change.

Grants & Grantees

This large-scale performance piece will reveal unique insights into Fryderyk Chopin as both a historical figure and a masterful composer, as the piano parts for two concerti are replaced with powerful spoken monologues constructed from fragments of Chopin’s letters and biographies, performed in Polish by actress Barbara Wysocka and accompanied by the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia.

Grants & Grantees

Centering on Foley’s improvisational performance practice, action is primary will feature photographic, moving-image, sonic, and written documentation of up to 750 dances, which Foley performs on a daily basis at 3:15 p.m.

Grants & Grantees

Carol Shloss is a nonfiction writer and a 1994 Pew Fellow.

Grants & Grantees

The overall intent of my work is to develop a visual myth about the build up and aftermath of war.

Philadelphia’s academic and activist communities will reflect on the life and impact of Octavius V. Catto.

Originally commissioned by Mendelssohn Club, for world premiere performances in Philadelphia in April 2014, the Bang on a Can All-Stars will perform Wolfe’s new work as part of the upcoming NY Phil Biennial.

Grants & Grantees

Edgar J. Shockley III (Pew Fellow, 2008) sees his unique contribution to the world as reconciling African and European theatrical aesthetics, making us all more aware of what it means to be human.

Philadelphia Young Playwrights will identify new technological tools that maximize the impact of its programming and allow for quality instruction and individualized attention.

Grants & Grantees

Founded in 2008, Tiny Dynamite presents theater works by contemporary British and Philadelphia playwrights in both traditional and unconventional settings.

Grants & Grantees

Recognized as one of the world’s leading conservatories, The Curtis Institute of Music (Curtis) was founded in 1924 by Mary Louise Curtis Bok. Curtis has educated and trained some of the most exceptionally gifted young musicians from around the world for careers as performing artists on the highest professional level.