UniSon

UNIVERSESThe Revolution will be LIVE !!!!

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From the Director
How does one adapt poetry to the stage? How much reverence should one have to the delicacy of structure and articulation of the meter that one is adapting? There can no more be another August Wilson play than there can be another August Wilson. He was unique and individual. Thus must this performance be; we must separate it as far as possible from anything resembling an August Wilson play. That is what I truly believe will be the honor and the tribute to the man.

UNIVERSES are all poets. Adventurous and fire-breathing artists. When they approached me about directing their new musical inspired by the poetry of August Wilson, I was instantly skeptical, only because there has been such reverence surrounding his work. And of course, I’m not one known for reverence. Being a playwright myself, I look at any work and seek to break it open and make it as fully alive as possible.

The challenge of this project is to tell a wholly original story inspired by one of the greatest dramatists to grace the Earth, without tying our tale to any particular thread of August Wilson’s biography. The poetry is glorious and at times frightening, and I hope the story that it has inspired of a Poet haunted by Seven Terrors is just as thrilling.

This is not a poetry reading or slam. For the most part, you will not be hearing any one complete piece of poetry from August Wilson. I disclose this, not to lessen your expectation but to change and maybe even enhance it. This performance is created by a collective of Poets being inspired by another Poet. Like Shakespeare and the Greeks have inspired hundreds of dramatists through the centuries, I would hope that by the end of our journey you will sense a reverence, from one creative mind for another.

—Robert O‘Hara

The Poetry of August Wilson & UNIVERSES in UniSon, commissioned by The Oregon Shakespeare Festival.


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Berkeley Rep Announces the 2016 Ground Floor Summer Residency Lab, where UNIVERSES will further develop UNISON.


“Summer's a-comin' in! The Ground Floor celebrates its fifth season with an impressive list of artists joining us for the Summer Residency Lab, including UNIVERSES … and many more.”
More info here…
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The Goodman Theatre hosted a UNIVERSES Lab


UNIVERSES was in Chicago (March 2106), at The Goodman Theatre, in the lab with Robert O'Hara & Joan Herrington. Then shifted for the remainder of their time there to work on UNIVERSES' new commission with The Goodman Theatre, working title, "The Chosen Few".

‪#‎UniSonOSF‬ #universesUniSon #UniSonUNIVERSESAugustWilson #UniversesChosenFew

UNIVERSES previously "Universeizing" selections of Wilson's Poetry at The Poetry Foundation (Chicago) as part of The Goodman Theatre's August Wilson Celebration (March 2015). Follow this link to the event…

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The Oregon Shakespeare Festival Announces UNISON as party of it’s 2017 Season.“

Opening in April is the world premiere of UniSon by UNIVERSES, with the poetry of August Wilson, directed by Robert O'Hara (The Wiz). OSF's resident ensemble UNIVERSES (Party People, Ameriville) sought out and were granted access to August Wilson's poetry catalogue in association with his widow Constanza Romero and his estate. The result is a high-energy, music-filled exploration of the passing on of legacy and the reconstruction of collective memory, inspired by the poetry of one of our most revered playwrights. Fusing poetry, theatre, movement and original music, UniSon gives OSF audiences the opportunity to see one of America's leading ensembles of color bring an American master to life through their signature theatrical aesthetic-for a new generation, in a new century, a new millennium.” - OSF
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