ICARUS

An Americana Myth Musical

See Minnie Minoseczeck’s Menagerie of Marvels, a show of amazements and abominations, rising up from the dustbowl of the Great Depression!

See Passionate Penny fly through the air! Experience the genius of the great inventor! Face the Monster’s Maze. Hear the mellifluous music of Icarus! Watch them try to escape monsters and machinations of all kinds and see it all come crashing down!

Warning: MINNIE MINOSECZECK’S MENAGERIE OF MARVELS IS NOT RESPONSIBLE IF YOU GOT A WEAK HEART.

ICARUS features an original Americana score by Nathan Leigh (Song of Songs) and the fantastical puppetry by Faye Dupras.

ARTISTIC TEAM

CONCEIVED & DIRECTED - Jason Slavick

Jason Slavick is the Artistic Director of Liars & Believers. He is a director, writer and educator. For the LAB, he conceived and directed Who Would Be King, Yellow Bird Chase, and ICARUS, which premiered in Cambridge, played Outside The Box in Boston and made an acclaimed New York debut at the 2013 New York Musical Theatre Festival (honorable mention for book and design). Jason directed 28 Seeds, he co-wrote and directed, Song of Songs: a LoveRomp, and wrote and directed Le Cabaret Grimm: a punk cabaret fairy tale {sans fairies}, which premiered in Boston and played at the 2012 New York Musical Theatre Festival (best featured performer and best design, honorable mention for choreography). Jason also directed the LAB’s experimental project, Talk to Strangers. Jason wrote and directed Heaven & Hell: The Fantastical Temptation of the 7 Deadly Sins, a musical excursion commissioned by The Boston Conservatory. As a company member of Boston Theatre Works, Jason directed Othello (Elliot Norton Award nominated for Best Production and Best Actor), The Tempest, Antony & Cleopatra, and Macbeth. He developed and directed Emily Mann’s critically acclaimed Meshugah, Olga Humphrey’s Veronika Vavoom Volcanologist, and his own play J: a one-act improvised tragi-comedy. He also directed numerous developmental workshops and readings including Joyce Carol Oates’ The Tattooed Girl. Jason has directed throughout New England, in Tel Aviv, and in Philadelphia. Besides the shows above, Jason has written and directed The Golem, Icaphish, and Alice: a Grotesque Turn in Twelve Scenes. Jason has taught at colleges and schools throughout New England. He earned his MFA in directing from The Trinity Repertory Conservatory in Providence, where he was awarded the inaugural Pell Scholar Award.

There he had the great fortune to work with Oskar Eustis, Brian Kulick, and Kevin Moriarity. Jason also studied at the Dell Arte International School of Physical Theatre, the Eugene O’Neill National Theatre Institute, and the Warsaw Theatre Academy in Warsaw, Poland.

MUSIC & LYRICS - Nathan Leigh

Nathan Leigh is a playwright, composer, musician, and head music reviewer for Afropunk.com. He has composed original music for Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theatre, Berkshire Theatre Festival, American Repertory Theatre, Connecticut Repertory Theatre, The Debate Society (Gothamist: Best Sound Design 2007 for The Eaten Heart), Stoneham Theatre (IRNE Best Sound Design 2009 for Strangers On A Train), Central Square Theatre (IRNE Best Sound Design 2010 for The Hound of the Baskervilles), and many more. With Kyle Jarrow, Nathan co-created the musicals Big Money (WTF Boris Segall Fellowship 2008) and The Consequences (World Premiere 2012 at WHAT). With Jason Slavick and the Liars and Believers ensemble, Nathan Leigh composed scores for adaptations of Song of Songs and Icarus. With Megan Sass, he is the composer and lyricist for The Mad Scientist’s Guide to Romance, Robots and Soul-Crushing Loneliness premiering at NYC Fringe 2015. He is the author of the serialized musicals Sealand! and William Henry Harrison: Time Detective. Nathan’s most recent solo album is A Life In Transit. www.nathanleigh.net

DIRECTOR & DESIGNER OF PUPPETRY - Faye Dupras

Faye Dupras has worked as a director, puppeteer and educator throughout Eastern Canada and the USA. As an image based theater artist she is dedicated to creating visually and thematically rich, cross-disciplinary new works. She is the artistic director of Foreign Landscapes Productions, under which she produced the award-winning play Bird’s Eye View and co-produced By the Willow (UNIMA-USA Citation of Excellence 2005). Star Sisters, Faye’s most recent co-production, was created with the permission of, and in collaboration with, Canadian oral tradition storyteller Louise Profeit LeBlanc.
As a collaborator Faye has worked with many exciting artist including Clea Minaker on the Feist Tour projection work (2007) and Beauty First (2010.) She has worked with Jumblies Theatre in various capacities including directing Tea and Bridges (2006) and the World Stage production of Bridge of One Hair (2007). Faye has had the honor of working with Hua Hua Chang, performing in her internationally touring production of Butterfly Dreams (2002-06). She has also worked with Underground Railway Theatre on several projects including States of Grace (2007), How do you Spell Hope (2008), Galileo (2009), Abiyoyo (2012), and Tokoloshe (2013).

Faye has apprenticed under several inspiring artists, perhaps most notably Canada’s acclaimed puppeteer Noreen Young. Faye holds an MFA in “Puppetry Arts” from the University of Connecticut and a BFA in “Theater and Development” from Concordia University in Montreal Canada.

LIGHTING & SET DESIGN - Aaron Sherkow

Aaron Sherkow has been designing shows since 2001. He has designed for theatre, dance and opera companies around Wisconsin, including Cornerstone Theatre, Danceworks, Nevermore Theatre, Attic Theatre Inc and Chamber Theatre. In 2008, he moved to Boston to pursue his MFA in Design at Boston University. Designing at Boston University takes up most of his time but he is very excited to be branching out into the larger Boston Theatre community with Liars & Believers.

He received his BA in Theatre with a Music minor from Lawrence University in 2004. Between 2004 and 2008 he worked a variety of jobs including Math Tutoring and Technical Direction as well as free lance design. In 2006, he joined the staff of Ripon College’s Theatre Department.

COSTUME DESIGNER - Kendra Bell

Kendra spends her daytime making beautiful things at Costume Works in Somerville. Before settling at Costume Works, she has worked for Huntington Theater Company, Stonehill College, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Glimmerglass Opera, and Hubbard Street Dance. Some of her design work includes Song of Songs (LAB), The Fantasticks (Prometheus), Cosi Fan Tutte (Millikin University), and Peter (Braintree Films). She holds a BFA in Studio Art from Millikin University and a MFA in Theatrical Design from Rutgers University.

DREAM MONSTER - Penny Benson

Penny Benson is a visual and performing artist / puppeteer and actor (AEA) with over 100 performance credits. She and her work have been seen nationally and internationally, from Canada to China. She most recently appeared in her original short Black Birds, Red Hills, in conjunction with Juventas New Music Ensemble at Oberon in Cambridge. Prior to that Penny designed puppets for the Jean’s Playhouse national tour of Christmas Carol, which are currently on display at the Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry in Storrs, CT. Her original MFA production, Goblin Market, premiered at Connecticut Repertory Theatre in March 2014, for which she served as playwright, puppet designer/builder, and co-director. Penny toured nationally with Underground Railway Theatre in How Do You Spell Hope and Are You Ready My Sister, designed and built masks and puppets for KRIK KRAK, and collaborated on Arabian Nights, Sila, Harriet Jacobs, Tru Grace, and Galileo. She has also designed and built puppets / masks for WHAT, TYG Productions, and Foreign Landscape Productions. Penny has served as a visiting teaching artist for URT, The Huntington Theatre, UMass Amherst, Babson College, and City Stage, and was a STARS grant Artist in Residence at Boston Day and Evening Academy. Penny continues to design, build, devise and direct theater and puppetry for productions originating in the Boston area.

See examples of Penny’s work here.

CAST

MINNIE - Aimee Rose Ranger

Aimee Rose Ranger is a Boston actor, clown and storyteller. For three years she hosted SOOP: Stories Of Our People, a monthly storytelling potluck out of her home, and continues to co-host the Encyclopedia Show: Somerville, a monthly variety show at the Davis Square Theatre. Aimee Rose and co-collaborator, Veronica Barron, were winners of the first round of Company One’s Fringe Wars with Winning Higgins’s Love, an original clown tragedy. Aimee Rose has created a few solo shows including My Heart: A Jester at the New England Fringe Festival and Gender Dazed and Confused off-broadway at the Medicine Show Theatre. She is an Artistic Associate with Whistler in the Dark and was last seen in their IRNE award-winning Tales from Ovid. Other credits with Whistler include Trojan Women, Recent Tragic Events, Fen, Dogg’s Hamlet, Cahoot’s Macbeth. She is a resident pirate tour guide for the Freedom Trail Foundation: note, her actual initials read ARR.

DAEDALUS - Steven Emanuelson

Steven L. Emanuelson holds a B.S. in acting from Illinois State University and an M.F.A. in Theatre Performance from The University of Georgia. After graduating with his Master’s in 2001, Steve pursued a professional acting and teaching career in Atlanta where he worked for such companies as: The Alliance Theatre (recipient of the 2007 Regional Theatre Tony Award®) in Shear Madness, Actor’s Express Theatre in bothBent and Some Men, Dad’s Garage Theatre in Archie’s Weird Fantasy, Debbie Does Dallas (The Musical), One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Die Mommy! Die! and The Rocky Horror Show to name a few. He has also been seen at The Atlanta Lyric Theatre as Bernardo in West Side Story and has performed with Jewish Theatre of the South in their productions of Miklat and Capture the Moon. Steve is an Equity Membership Candidate with Actor’s Equity Association and an Artistic Associate at Dad’s Garage Theatre in Atlanta. For six years, he taught acting classes at Actor’s Express Theatre as well as giving individual voice lessons in stage speech. This is Steven’s second production in Boston after moving here June 1, 2011. He was in Riverside Theatre Works’ production of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof this past fall.

DAEDALUS - Jonathan Horvath

Jonathan is an actor, director, teacher and voice over artist based in New York City. Recent stage credits include: Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventures (Arts Center of Coastal Carolina), The 39 Steps (River Valley Rep) The House of Mirth (Metropolitan Playhouse), Before Placing Me on Your Shelf (NYC Fringe Festival) Darling–also with Nathan Leigh! (Ars Nova). You might also spot him in the upcoming TV comedy series Brown Nation and hawking Legos to childen on TV and online. Off stage and offline, Jonathan is a sailboat captain, leading charters and teaching lessons on the Hudson River. Find out more at www.jonathanhorvath.com

* member Actors Equity

ICARUS - Austin Auh

Austin Auh graduated from Brandeis University with degrees in psychology and music performance. He has worked with local companies such as Imaginary Beasts, Turle Lane Playhouse, Interim Writers, SLAMBoston, and Happy Medium Theatre Company. Austin has also performed with Connecticut Free Shakespeare and A Collection of Shiny Objects in NYC. Austin has performed with the LAB in previous years (Le Cabaret Grimm, Song of Songs) and is very grateful for the opportunity to create something beautiful and exciting with them again. He is an Equity Membership Candidate.

ICARUS - Lukas Papenfusscline

Lukas Papenfusscline loves to collaborate with the Liars & Believers community. A recent graduate of the dual-degree program between Tufts University and the New England Conservatory, Lukas studied drama and contemporary improvisation, alongside teachers Ran Blake and Carole Haber. Born in New York, he was raised in California, but spent his formative years in Paris, France. Lukas is a folk musician looking forward to the release of his debut EP out this fall. He performs with a number of musical and theatrical ensembles in the Boston area and directs guerrilla theatre.

PENNY - Anni Epstein

Anni is a a BFA musical theater major and rising senior at The Boston Conservatory, and is thrilled to be joining the company of Icarus! Her favorite Boston area credits include Odysseus’s girl in Cyclops: a satyr play (A.R.T Oberon), Oliva in Twelfth Night (The Boston Conservatory), Prudence in Beyond Therapy (TBC), ensemble member and soloist in Coolsville: the rickie lee jones musical (TBC), and Number 40 in The Sonnets. Love to the cast and to her family.

PENNY - Corianna Moffatt

Corianna Moffatt is a Boston based theatre artist originally from Nashville, TN. She recently performed with The LAB in: Lunar Labyrinth. Directoral credits include: The Last Confession of the Virgin Maria by Phillip Berman and The Inside by Lydia R. Diamond, adapted by Tasia A. Jones. Other recent projects include touring New England with Ariel Artists’ The Four Quartets: Variations, an experimental physical and vocal meditation on the poems of the same name by T.S. Eliot. She is a founding member of Free Hands, a puppet troupe whose works include The Three Blessed Brothers, a new Appalachian folktale, and The First Person To Consider The Sun, a shadow puppet fable. Corianna is the Associate Producer for the playwright development company Playwrights’ Commons, and is currently working as an Artistic Associate for Company One (The Brother/Sister Plays, Dramaturg & Bengal Tiger At The Baghdad Zoo, Assistant Director). She has a BFA in Theatre Arts from Boston University and is the New England Representative for the Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas.

PENNY - Liz Tancredi

Previous Boston credits include The Memory of Water (Vokes Theater), Hedda Gabler (Longwood Players), The Comedy of Errors (Anthem Theater Co.), and upcoming Webisode “Allston Xmas: Everything but the Couch”. Select New York credits include Spoon River Anthology, After the Fall (Variations Theater Group), Restoration Comedy, These Seven Sicknesses (The Flea Theater), The Notebook of Trigorin (Attic Theater Co.). Originally from Amherst, MA, Liz graduated form Syracuse University with a BFA in Drama. Based in New York, she’s taking a brief sabbatical to spend some time in Boston and is thrilled to be rounding out her Beantown adventure with Icarus! www.liztancredi.com

PENNY - Lauren Eicher

Lauren Eicher is proud to be in her first production with Liars and Believers. Recent credits include Olivia in Twelfth Night; or, What You Will (Perchance to Dream DC), Scheherazade in 1001 (Company One), Hermia in A Midsummer NIght’s Dream (Shakespeare Now!), and Elise Hougen in The Master Forger (11:11 Theater Co). She also plays ukulele at local yoga studios and is a member of the Ruby Rose Fox band. She earned her BFA in acting from Boston University in 2010.

THE REST OF THE WORLD - Veronica Barron

Veronica Barron is a Boston-based performer and maker of theatre that is collaborative, choreographic, and music-based. Her recent work includes composing and performing new music for Whistler in the Dark’s Vinegar Tom, lauded as “magnificent” by Boston’s WGBH; performing as a dancer in the butoh-based UnAccountable Fog with CHIMERAlab Dance Theatre, presented at the New Orleans Fringe Festival; and collaborating with Aimee Rose Ranger to create and perform Winning Higgins’s Love: A Clown Tragedy, which has been presented at The Boston Center for the Arts, the A.R.T.’s Oberon, Puppet Showplace Theater, and others. Current works in progress include a murder ballad inspired by MacBeth and James Bond, and a street theater clown show featuring “the Crumbs de la Creme”. Veronica holds a BFA in Theater Arts from Boston University, where her studies included collaborative playmaking, a physical approach to acting, and classical Indian dance-theater. veronicabarron.wordpress.com

ACCORDION, FLUTE - Jenn Bliss

Jenn Bliss is as happy as a human cucumber to be appearing in her first production with Liars & Believers. A versatile performer, Jenn has performed from Maine to Mexico with circus antics and accordion frolics. She also coordinates several festivals and parades in the Greater Boston area.

FIDDLE - Ethan Rubin

Ethan Rubin moved to Boston from Philadelphia to go to college and ended up staying a while. Since then, he has played violin, bass, or mandolin for orchestras, folk punk bands, gospel choirs, death metal bands, jazz quartets, prog rock groups, neo-soul bands, and some kind of experimental Middle Eastern thing, but he’s never been in a musical before. Now that he is in a musical, he’s decided that it is fun. When Ethan isn’t playing an instrument, he teaches construction skills at an alternative degree school in Cambridge, and sometimes he also reads books and rides a bicycle. The last few weeks working with the Icarus cast and crew have been great, so he’s glad he got the chance to jump on the Liars & Believers bandwagon before he moves to England for graduate school in the fall.

GUITAR, MUSIC DIRECTOR - Jay Mobley

Jay Mobley is a Boston-based composer and performing artist originally from the Capital Region of New York. He has written music for opera, dance, theatre, rock bands, electronics, and hubcaps. Jay is a frequent session and pit guitarist, having played on recordings and in musical productions throughout New England and New York. He works collaboratively with a wide variety of other artists, most recently having coauthored a dark comedy, “Craft Brew,” with writing partner Mark McDonough. Current projects include a song cycle based on oral histories of New Hampshire, and an adaptation of a vampire opera, with John J King, for OperaHub. As a music director, Jay has most recently worked with New York Theatre Institute and with Liars & Believers. On banjo, Jay has played with bands based in Brooklyn, NY, Northampton, MA, and Rochester, NY, and has toured in the freak-folk/puppet-rock-opera group 23 Psaegz. Jay is excited to return to work with the LAB again on this magical production!

FIDDLE - Eric Lee

Classically-trained multi-instrumentalist and singer/songwriter Eric Lee has been performing for over 15 years. A seasoned session musician, Lee has traversed genres ranging from folk to metal, lending his lush string arrangements and unique improvisational talent to dozens of recordings. He has accompanied such legends as The Kennedys, Peter Rowan, John Gorka, and Tracy Grammer, amongst others. Previous musical theatre productions include Kiss Me Kate!, Godspell, Jaque Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris (Smith College), and Jesus Christ: Superstar! Based out of Western Massachusetts, he performs his songs locally and abroad, and tours as a member of the bluegrass band “Max Wareham & The Morning Bugle”.

SOUNDTRACK

BEHIND THE SCENES

We explore, experiment, and collaborate – most of all with you. We want you to join us behind the scenes in the creative process, so we share our work as it develops. Take a look. . .

HISTORY

May 17 & 18, 2013 – ICARUS premiered at the Cambridge YMCA Theatre in Cambridge, MA.

July 18, 2013 – ICARUS played at the Spiegeltent on Boston Common as part of Boston’s inaugural Outside the Box Festival.

ICARUS was an official selection of the New York Musical Theatre Festival, where it received Honorable Mention awards for Book and Design.

May 2014 – As a resident theater company at the American Repertory Theatre’s OBERON, Liars & Believers presented ICARUS in at OBERON in Cambridge, MA. Pre-show entertainment was provided by Revolutionary Snake Ensemble Duo (5/1), Tony Leva with Teen’s Spirit (5/2), Emperor Norton’sStationary Marching Band (5/4), What Time Is It, Mr. Fox? (5/8), Dirty Water Brass Band (5/9), Ezekiel’s Wheel (5/11), and local circus performers.

August 18, 2014 – ICARUS was featured at the National Puppetry Festival in Storrs, CT

PRESS

Reviews

“…you can see Mr. Slavick’s sardonic aims and envision ‘Icarus’ really taking off.”

Scott Heller, New York Times

“Slavick and his company have stuffed lightning into a bottle”

Kilian Melloy, EDGE Boston

“magic is translated via inventive blocking and human powered movement of set pieces and puppets”

Noe Kamelamela, New England Theatre Geek

“[T]his musical has special, magical qualities that make it well-worth seeing. Fly with ‘Icarus’– you won’t be disappointed.”

Robert Nesti, EDGE Boston

“They delight and mezmerize”

Angela Lam, Theatre is Easy

“a unique musical experience”

Gianfranco Lentini, nytheare.com

“One marvels at the sheer simplicity and transparency of the effects. Therein lies the magic.”

Kathryn Adisman, Usher Nonsense

 

Features

Boston Globe: With ‘Icarus,’ Liars & Believers takes another leap

Boston Globe: Icarus alights in the Dust Bowl

nytheatre.com Q&A preview

EDGE Boston: Two Nights of High Flight :: Jason Slavick on the Multi-Media Theatrical Experience ‘Icarus’