Last September, The Apothetae was invited to participate in The Shakespeare Society’s, Shakespeare Works Residency Series. We explored A Midsummer Night’s Dream with a group of talented actors and artistic advisers including, acclaimed vocal coach, Krisitn Linklater, actor, Jay O. Sanders and professor, Richard McCoy. The residency culminated in a sold out presentation at The Public Theatre in New York City.
During the residency we had lengthy, in-depth discussions about the three distinct worlds (Athenians, Fairies, Rude Mechanicals), and the themes of War, Chaos and Otherness in the play. What we presented this month is the next phase of this process – “Spirits of Another Sort” – an exploratory workshop featuring selections from Midsummer, with an integrated cast of able-bodied, physically disabled and intellectually disabled actors.
The Apothetae, together with Performance Lab 115 and independent producer, Becky Leifman, spent three weeks working with the Rude Mechanicals, using an exploratory curriculum created by Ms. Buffamanti and Ms Leifman. Our objective was to give these actors with intellectual disabilities exposure to techniques and practices that would prepare them to enter into and thrive in a rigorous, professional rehearsal atmosphere with all the demands of working on Shakespearian text. The last two weeks of rehearsal saw the arrival and integration of the full ensemble and getting the work up on its feet with Director, Alice Reagan.
In addition to presenting some really strong work, The Apothetae and its producing partners employed 5 actors with physical disabilities, 4 actors with intellectual/cognitive disabilities integrated with 4 able bodied actors. Our work was shared with an invited audience of over 150 people in two nights, and the audience consisted of every age, ethnicity and ability. We presented an hours worth of material from A Midsummer Night's Dream with less than 40 hours of rehearsal. Not too shabby...We want to thank everyone who contributed, participated and attended one of our showings. We look forward to keeping you updated on any future plans for the project!
See more photos from "Spirits of Another Sort"