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About Boom Arts
Boom Arts, founded in 2011 in Portland, Oregon, is a boutique presenter and producer of contemporary theatre and performance from around the world. We seek out, support, and present beautiful, complex, cutting edge theatre and performance projects that ask social and political questions in artistically inventive ways. Our 2013-2014 season includes work by artists from Chile, Russia, Uganda, and the United States, all presented in a context of discovery and dialogue through partnerships in the arts, academia, and the broader community. Join us! "A young organization that presents some of the more interesting and thought-provoking theater programming in Portland" -- Willamette Week "savvy and provocative programming" -- Oregon Arts Watch "There’s really no one else in town doing what Boom does, and their programming is consistently excellent." -- Portlandtheatrescene.com Listen to the feature segment on OPB Radio about
A Kaddish for Bernie Madoff
! Listen to the feature segment on OPB Radio about The Natasha Plays!
CURRENT + UPCOMING PROJECTS
Guillermo Calderón in Oregon
Meet Chile's premier playwright through programs produced by Boom Arts at Reed College & the Cinema Pacific Film Festival, University of Oregon.
Calderón at Reed College: April 22 & 23, 2014 Calderón at University of Oregon: April 24, 2014
Public Events: Tuesday, April 22, 5pm: Staged Reading of
, followed by Q & A with Calderón, Performing Arts Building, Reed College, FREE Wednesday, April 23, 7pm: Screening of
Violeta Went to Heaven
(Screenplay by Calderón), followed by Q & A with Calderón, Performing Arts Building, Reed College, FREE
Co-Sponsored by the Division of Literature and Languages, and the Departments of English, Music, Political Science, Spanish, and Theatre. Supported by the Office of the Dean of the Faculty and the Office for Institutional Diversity. Produced by Boom Arts by special invitation from Reed College.
And: Thursday, April 24, 3:30 & 7pm, program at University of Oregon as part of the Cinema Pacific Festival
A Kaddish for Bernie Madoff
Alicia Jo Rabins
Spiritual Implications of the Financial Collapse
BREAKING NEWS: NEW PERFORMANCES HAVE BEEN SCHEDULED:
MAY 8, 10, & 11 7:30pm & MAY 11 2pm
Note venue change: Lincoln Hall Studio Theatre, Portland State University. There is no performance scheduled for Friday, May 9.
CLICK HERE TO PURCHASE TICKETS:
$20 general admission, $35 premium reserved seating
Listen to OPB's radio feature about the piece here.
Join us for newly scheduled encore performances of this extraordinary production! Four shows only, at Lincoln Hall Studio Theatre, PSU, May 8, 10, & 11, 2014. The 2pm matinee performance on May 11 will be followed by a talkback with economist Eric Tymoigne of Lewis & Clark College. "Completely enthralling, and refreshingly original. When the voice and story are authentic, the audience knows it in a heartbeat. Rabins skillfully crafts one telling word and song and image after another. Dimly, a painful story of our time comes into view, along with unanswered questions. A triumph of personal creation." -- Win Goodbody, Portlandtheatrescene.com
A Kaddish for Bernie Madoff
is an original music theatre work by acclaimed Portland-based indie rocker, poet, and Torah scholar Alicia Jo Rabins. Through electro-acoustic music, documentary theatre, and meditative poetry, Rabins views Bernie Madoff and the system which allowed him to function through the lens of ancient Jewish and Buddhist texts on financial ethics, ecology, and cycles. Created & performed by Alicia Jo Rabins. Directed by Maureen Towey. Original animation by Zak Margolis. Sound design by Casi Pacilio. Stage managed by Amy Vaught. Curated and produced by Boom Arts. A special thank you to our Show Sponsors: Linda & Scott Andrews, Harold Goldstein & Carol Streeter, & Stanley Penkin.
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Appointment with gOD
The US Visa Process from an African Perspective
April 11 & 12 at 7:30pm, April 13 at 2:00pm, 2014 Lincoln Hall Studio Theatre, Portland State University CLICK HERE TO WATCH OUR 1-MINUTE VIDEO TEASER.
Join us for workshop performances of Appointment with gOD, Ugandan playwright Deborah Asiimwe's funny, insightful exploration of the US visa process from an African perspective. A group of visa applicants anxiously await their fate in a US embassy waiting room in a developing country, and compare strategies and experiences with one another between appointments with the "gODs" behind the counter. These performances will follow a week-long Boom Arts artist residency at Portland State University with Asiimwe and her collaborator, NY-based director Emily Mendelsohn. They will feature dynamic Portland actors Victor Mack, Ithica Tell, and Damaris Webb, as well as drummer Alex Addy of the Obo Addy Legacy Project, plus student and community performers. Each performance will be followed by curated community conversations about what it means to encounter and enter the United States-- and the roads new Portlanders have taken to get here. Presented in partnership with Portland State University's School of Theatre and Film, College of the Arts, with project support from the Multnomah County Cultural Coalition, the Oregon Cultural Trust, the Regional Arts & Culture Council, & Work for Art.
Theatre in Uganda & Rwanda: Commemoration, Complexity, & Collaboration
An Artist Talk by director Emily Mendelsohn (NYC) & playwright Deborah Asiimwe (Uganda) Presented by Boom Arts, Lewis & Clark College Theatre Department, & the World Affairs Council of Oregon on the 20th Anniversary of the Rwandan Genocide Part of Boom Arts' Theatre of Global Engagement: International Collaboration and Social Change Arts & Lectures Series
Monday, April 7, 2014, 7:00pm The Fir Acres Main Stage Theatre , Lewis & Clark College
What does long-term artistic collaboration between the US and Africa look like? Hear from US-based director Emily Mendelsohn and her collaborator of seven years, acclaimed Ugandan playwright Deborah Asiimwe as they discuss their five-year, binational creation process for Cooking Oil, a play exploring the grassroots politics of foreign aid, as well as the upcoming work Maria Kizito, being developed in Rwanda by US, Rwandan, and Ugandan artists on the subject of the Rwandan genocide. Discover these artists' extraordinary work and learn what it takes to connect, listen, and create across cultures.
The Power of Performance: Theatre in Conflict Zones
An Artist Talk by Joanna Sherman, Artistic Director of Bond Street Theatre Part of Boom Arts' Theatre of Global Engagement: International Collaboration and Social Change Arts & Lectures Series
February 22, 2014 at 7pm Fir Acres Mainstage Theatre, Lewis and Clark College Co-presented by Boom Arts, Lewis and Clark College Theatre Department, and World Affairs Council of Oregon
Joanna Sherman, internationally recognized pioneer in peacebuilding and the arts and Artistic Director of the MacArthur Award-winning New York-based ensemble Bond Street Theatre, presents a video-lecture exploring the impact and value of theatre as a tool for social improvement in global areas of conflict. For over three decades, Bond Street has used performance and theatre for healing and empowerment in some of the world’s toughest conflict zones, from the Balkans to the Middle East to Afghanistan. In her dynamic presentation, illustrated with riveting video footage, Sherman will show how Bond Street collaborates with local artists in high-need areas to apply "theatre-based" practices in working with communities such as street children, rural women, traumatized populations, and refugees. Discover why cross-cultural artistic conversation is crucial to mutual understanding, and how the practical applications of performance are a powerful means for bringing peace. Don't miss this chance to hear from a true visionary in the field of theatre and social change, speaking for the first time in Portland; one night only.
The Natasha Plays:
By Yaroslava Pulinovich (Russia)
Girlhood and the Class Divide in Russia
Thursday-Saturday, November 21-23, 2013. 7:30pm. Lincoln Hall Studio Theatre, Portland State University. Free (donation suggested).
Listen to our feature segment on OPB radio, from 07:30-18:50: http://www.opb.org/radio/programs/stateofwonder/segment/november-23-2013/ Boom Arts presents The Natasha Plays, two short solo plays on girlhood and the class divide in Russia by 26-year old Russian playwright Yaroslava Pulinovich. Karin Magaldi directed workshop performances featuring actresses Lily Burnett and Anneke Wisner. Presented in an English translation by John Freedman. Performance evenings included both short plays, followed by curated talkback conversations on themes including:Russian theatre today with Yaroslava Pulinovich via Skype (Nov 21); girlhood and gender in Russia and the US with gender scholar Ann Mussey (Portland State) and Russian literature scholar Tatiana Osipovich (Lewis & Clark; Nov 22); and inequality in contemporary Russia with political scientist Sarah Henderson (Oregon State University), co-sponsored by the World Affairs Council (Nov 23). The Natasha Plays By Yaroslava Pulinovich Translation by John Freedman Directed by Karin Magaldi Featuring Lily Burnett & Anneke Wisner Presented in partnership with Portland State University School of Theatre and Film and World Affairs Council of Oregon. Produced by special arrangement with Agency North Ltd, www.agencynorth.com.
Young Chileans and the Legacy of Pinochet
Sunday, September 15th at 3pm (Reading) + 4pm (Panel). Reception following. The White Box at the University of Oregon in Portland 24 NW First Avenue, Portland FREE. First come, first served.
As part of the TBA Festival (Institute) and in partnership with TBA and The White Box at the University of Oregon in Portland, Boom Arts presented a reading of Guillermo Calderón’s Villa (2011). Three young women debate the future of the site of a former villa turned into a torture barracks by the military dictatorship. Originally performed inside the infamous Villa Grimaldi, this “spare, intense” play by one of Chilean theatre’s fiercest new literary voices grapples with the legacy of atrocity using “stark lyricism and dreamlike imagery” (LA Times). The panel discussion that followed asked how a new generation of Chileans—including the children of activists targeted by Pinochet and other younger artists, journalists, and activists—is making sense of their shared past within a post-Pinochet climate. A reception was hosted by The White Box, University of Oregon in Portland. Villa: By Guillermo Calderón Translated by William Gregory Directed by Tracy Cameron Francis Dramaturgy by Sarah Rose Leonard Featuring Rebecca Lingafelter, Cristi Miles, & Dana Millican Panelists: Guillermo Calderón (via Skype) Mariela Szwarcberg (Assistant Professor of Political Science at Reed College) Amalia Gladhart (Professor of Spanish and Head of the Department of Romance Languages at the University of Oregon) Moderated by Ruth Wikler-Luker (Boom Arts). VILLA was originally produced as co-production between Teatro Playa and Santiago a Mil International Theater Festival. This event was co-sponsored by PICA and The White Box as part of the TBA:13 Festival: http://pica.org/event/reading-of-guillermo-calderons-villa/ http://pica.org/event/the-past-in-the-present/
AMARILLO Community Screenings Project with OntheBoards.tv
In collaboration with OntheBoards.tv, an online, on-demand site for the best of contemporary performance, Boom Arts produced screening and discussion events bringing OntheBoards.tv's HD film of Mexican theatre troupe Teatro Línea de Sombra’s immigration-themed work Amarillo to five Pacific Northwest communities from April-June 2013.These events were hosted and co-curated with local arts partners and included bilingual discussions with scholars and community leaders.
Cinema Pacific Festival, Eugene, OR: April 17 Tieton Arts & Humanities at Mighty Tieton, Tieton, WA: May 10 Milagro Theatre, Portland, OR: May 22 Columbia Center for the Arts, Hood River, OR: June 5 Ross Ragland Theater, Klamath Falls, OR: June 20
The Community Screenings Project was an extension of the live performance of Teatro Línea de Sombra’s Amarillo, and was made possible by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and Southern Exposure: Performing Arts of Latin America, a program of Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Robert Sterling Clark Foundation.
Boom Arts' West Coast premiere production of Chisa Hutchinson's puppet musical for kids and families toured to two community music schools and five city parks around Portland, Oregon in Summer 2013.
Book by Chisa Hutchinson. Music by Elliot Goldman. Lyrics by Sarah Gancher. Originally commissioned by City Parks’ SummerStage. Directed by Lava Alapai. Music Direction Ezra Weiss. Puppets by Anna Cosper & Afsaneh Aayani. Featuring Afsaneh Aayani, Lexie Hull, Jocelyn Seid, Blake Stone, Ithica Tell and Jon Roberts on trumpet. Kelly Clarke wrote of the production in the
: "A wild array of funky puppets annoy, cajole and distract a talented 10-year-old trumpet player in this short, jazzy kids production from Boom Arts. Tunde (Blake Stone) has the heart to become a true musician, but first he must vanquish five challenges, including frustration and jealousy, in order to reach his potential. Powerful singer and storyteller Ithica Tell and live trumpeter Jon Roberts help anchor the can-do story, while puppets cleverly crafted from old piano keys, bungee cords and bedsheets charm grade-school-aged viewers."
This production was supported by the Regional Arts and Culture Council, Work for Art, the Multnomah County Cultural Coalition, the Oregon Cultural Trust, and the Boom Arts Founding Circle. It was presented in collaboration with Portland Parks and Recreation's Summer Free for All, Ethos Music Center, and the Community Music Center. In-Kind Sponsors: Putnam and Clackamas High Schools, Subway, Tears of Joy Puppet Theatre, Trinity Methodist Church, & Watershed Communications. Promotional Partners: August Wilson Red Door Project, Hand2Mouth Theatre, Northwest Children's Theatre, Oregon Children's Theatre, Portland Playhouse, Tears of Joy Puppet Theatre. Special thanks to Subway for providing complimentary sandwiches to family audiences at three parks performances.
Salon Series 2012-2013: Living Politics
Readings of four plays contemplating individual political identity, presented on the occasion of the 2012 election, October-November 2012.
Staged in the living rooms of private homes:
by Amy Herzog
by David Adjmi
by Wallace Shawn Staged inside the visual art exhibition Kara Walker, More & Less, curated by Stephanie Snyder, at the Douglas F. Cooley Memorial Art Gallery, Reed College:
by Christina Anderson
The readings of Hollow Roots were presented by special invitation and with support from the Douglas F. Cooley Memorial Art Gallery and the Office for Institutional Diversity, Reed College. Special thanks to our Salon hosts for 2012-2013.
International Plays in Translation 2012-2013: Japan, Egypt, Argentina
Staged readings of cutting-edge plays from around the globe.
September 2012: Enjoy by Toshiki Okada at Portland Playhouse January 2013: Comedy of Sorrows by Ibrahim El-Husseini at Portland State University March 2013: The Coleman Family's Omission by Claudio Tolcachir at Portland Playhouse
This series was co-sponsored by the World Affairs Council of Oregon and produced in partnership with PICA (Enjoy), Portland Playhouse (Enjoy & Coleman), & Portland State University's School of Theatre & Film (Comedy of Sorrows).
WHO WE ARE
Curator & Producer
Ruth Wikler-Luker founded Boom Arts in 2011 and has curated and produced all its programs since then. Before moving to Portland in 2010, Ruth worked as an artist and arts administrator in NYC with affiliations including the Martin E. Segal Theatre Center (CUNY Graduate Center), the Brooklyn Philharmonic Orchestra, Arts International, and her own circus theatre troupe, Cirque Boom, through which she produced, directed, and developed five high-concept interdisciplinary circus theatre productions. In Portland, Ruth also works with Portland Playhouse as their Literary Manager, consulting on season planning and audience enrichment programs.. Ruth holds an MA in Theatre from Hunter College and a BA (Summa Cum Laude) from Barnard College. She is a published writer and translator, has served on numerous grant panels in Oregon and NYC, speaks five languages, is a proud Board member of Bond Street Theatre (NYC), and loves being a mom to her two young children, Julian and Nadine Luker.
Support Boom Arts
We are tremendously grateful to the many individuals, foundations, and businesses who help sustain our work by making financial and in-kind contributions in support of Boom Arts. Donate
Make a Tax-Deductible Contribution to Boom Arts through Fractured Atlas
Thank you for your support. To make an online contribution, please click here. You may also send a check made out to Fractured Atlas with Boom Arts in the memo line to Boom Arts, 4107 SE Woodstock Blvd, Ste 110, Portland, OR 97206.
Show Sponsor for
A Kaddish for Bernie Madoff
CD of music from A Kaddish for Bernie Madoff Unique chapbook of text from the piece by Alicia Jo Rabins Two premium reserved seats at the performance of your choice Exclusive invitation to meet the artist Acknowledgement in the program and onstage before the show A bottle of wine from the Willamette Valley's own Ponzi Vineyards (we couldn't resist!)
Pair of complimentary tickets to a performance of your choice Pair of reserved priority seats at any free public event (please RSVP to guarantee availability)
All Supporter Benefits, Plus: Named acknowledgement in all event programs Four reserved priority seats at all free public events (please RSVP to guarantee availability) Subscription to Curator’s Notes communiqué, featuring extensive contextual information, sent to Champions and above in preparation for each Boom Arts event
Founding Circle Member ($2,000-$4,999)
All Champion Benefits, Plus: Acknowledgement in special Founding Circle area of all event programs Acknowledgement in special Founding Circle section of Web Site Opportunity to join Boom Arts visiting artists for restaurant dinners in conjunction with select Boom Arts events (no-host) Exclusive invitation to attend/participate in both annual Founding Circle gatherings: Season Planning & Season Preview Consideration for future Board membership
Founding Circle Leader ($5,000 and above)
All Founders Circle Member Benefits, Plus: Named verbal recognition from the stage at each event Invitations to all Boom Arts salon• Invitation to observe select rehearsals *For a limited time, Founding Circle membership is available to those contributing at the Champion level. Please let us know if this is of interest to you.
Boom Arts is a sponsored project of Fractured Atlas, a non-profit arts service organization. Contributions for the charitable purposes of Boom Arts must be made payable to Fractured Atlas only.The value of goods and services in each category is as follows: Madoff Show Sponsor, $60; All other levels, $30. Any contribution above that amount is tax-deductible to the extent permitted by law. Benefits listed are per calendar year.
Boom Arts Founding Circle
Boom Arts gratefully acknowledges the support of its Founding Circle, a group of individuals gathering in support of Boom Arts’ vision, values, and potential to contribute to the cultural life of Portland by helping to sustain the organization in its first years of public programming.
Boom Arts Founding Circle Members
Fred Grossman, Chairman & Cheryl Grossman Linda & Scott Andrews Dania Caron Harold Goldstein & Carol Streeter The Mancini Family Lynn McDonald & Michael Edwards Howard Shapiro Matthew & Gail Starr Daniel Wikler & Sarah Marchand Mark Williams
Please contact Fred Grossman, Chairman, at firstname.lastname@example.org, or Ruth at email@example.com to find out how you can be part of this seminal patrons’ group.
Institutional Supporters of Boom Arts
Special thanks to the following foundations, companies, & public agencies for supporting our work:
First Republic Bank, Founding Sponsor Multnomah County Cultural Coalition Regional Arts & Culture Council Subway, In-Kind Sponsor-
Copyright 2013 Boom Arts
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