In the News: New Paradise Laboratories’ The Adults

1/3: New Paradise Laboratories’ The Adults. Photo by
2/3: New Paradise Laboratories’ The Adults. Photo by
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.


Collaborators & Colleagues

Rebecca Taichman is an Obie Award-winning theater director, whose work has been presented at theaters across the country, including American Repertory Theater, Wooly Mammoth Theatre Company, The Old Globe, and ACT.

The Philadelphia Chamber Music Society will hold a panel discussion exploring the effect that accumulated knowledge and experience has on artistic creation.

Pew Fellow Raphael Xavier takes his Center-supported autobiographical dance, The Unofficial Guide to Audience Watching Performance, to Chicago.

Grants & Grantees

Act II Playhouse produces classic and contemporary plays and musicals in suburban Ambler, Pennsylvania.

Grants & Grantees

Opera Philadelphia seeks to create productions of classic and new operatic works that assemble the finest international creative artists, and present a wide array of programming that educates, deepens, and diversifies opera audiences.

Van Loon and Wilder chronicle their individual remembered experiences during the making of their collaborative dance piece Eulogy for John Kerry.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Robert H. Browning, born in Singapore and educated in London, was the founding director of New York City’s World Music Institute, a position from which he retired in 2011.

Grants & Grantees

People’s Light is one of Pennsylvania’s largest professional nonprofit theaters and is known for its resident company of artists, eclectic mix of productions, and for innovative work with young people.

Grants & Grantees

Jamaaladeen Tacuma (Pew Fellow, 2011) is considered a living legend among jazz circles. He is credited with redefining the potential of the electric bass.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Jay Sanders is curator of performance at the Whitney Museum of American Art.

Grants & Grantees

Pennsylvania Ballet presented the American premiere of Mauro Bigonzetti’s Kazimir’s Colors, inspired by the Russian avant-garde painter Kazimir Malevich.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Matt Porterfield has written, directed, and produced three feature films, Hamilton (2006), Putty Hill (2011), and I Used To Be Darker (2013).