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

Grants & Grantees

WXPN’s yearlong project explores the origins and evolution of zydeco, a form of African-American roots music that blends Creole traditions, blues, and R&B.

Founded in 1887, the Penn Museum has begun to establish relationships with its neighbors in West Philadelphia and open conversations with communities outside the university.

Grants & Grantees

New Paradise Laboratories is an experimental performance ensemble that explores radical means to bend conventional ideas of theater.

Tempesta di Mare continues their two-season exploration of rarely-performed French orchestral music written for the theater.

Grants & Grantees

As a presenting arts organization, the Painted Bride offers a wide range of work in music, dance, spoken word, and theater.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Ralph B. Peña is a playwright, actor, and the artistic director of Ma-Yi Theater Company, a New York-based theater group that develops and produces new Asian-American plays.

Grants & Grantees

FringeArts presents the Philadelphia premieres of the second and third works in a trilogy by world-renowned experimental theater artist Romeo Castellucci at its 2013 and 2014 festivals.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Distinguished scholar, writer and curator Helen Molesworth is chief curator of the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art.

Grants & Grantees

In 1997 the Center awarded Pew Fellowships to 12 Philadelphia-based artists, and grants to 46 dance, music, and theater organizations in the greater Philadelphia region.

Pig Iron Theatre Company’s Center-funded School for Advanced Performance Training was featured in the Philadelphia Inquirer.

A performance excerpt of Ain Gordon’s new play, followed by an exploration of the Library’s vast archives of LGBT activist materials.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Harold Wolpert is the managing director of Roundabout Theatre Company in New York City.