SLEEP is based on the short story by internationally acclaimed writer Haruki Murakami about a young Japanese woman with a double life. Sleeplessness opens a door to escape: the constrictions of her prescribed role melt away, releasing a new self who takes risks, indulges in what is forbidden and devours Tolstoy and chocolate. This seeming “escape,” however, leads her to a world of lawlessness and danger that she never expected.
We are thrilled that we have been awarded a residency at Berkeley Rep's Ground Floor Summer Residency Lab to develop SLEEP. Berkeley Rep is one of the most exciting regional theatres producing today and The Ground Floor is a lab for the most exciting artists working in America today. Their generous support, plus your invaluable donation, can help us take SLEEP from New York to California for two weeks in June to do invaluable development on the piece.
Naomi iizuka (Alpert Award winning playwright) will join the actors, designers, musicians and director of Ripe Time to collaboratively adapt Murakami's radical short story. We have commissioned New Born Trio (click to listen!) an improvisational ensemble (Katie Down, Miguel Frasconi and Jeffrey Lependorf) to create our score. The score will use Japanese wind and percussion instruments to evoke Murakami's mysterious story world. The ensemble includes Akiko Aizawa (SITI company), Saori Tsukada (Ludic Proxy), Takemi Kitamura (The Oldest Boy), Paula McGonagle (12 year veteran of Ripe Time) and Jonathan Schenk. June will be our first opportunity to work in the room with our writer and composers and actors.
We are ecstatic to be granted space, housing and travel expenses and a place amongst the rich community of other artists hosted by The Ground Floor. In order to bring all of our collaborators to the Bay Area, we need to match the generous funding they've offered us. Having all our actors, designers and our trio in one space together for two weeks will make an invaluable difference to the development of this piece.
In the early 1990's, women in suburban Japan were still expected, upon marrying, to quit their jobs to be full time wives and mothers. Betty Friedan's "Feminine Mystique" catalyzed women in America in 1963, a revolution that hit Japan nearly 30 years later. In this spirit of this radical shift, Sleep examines the impulse to push against the constraints of everyday life, to transgress and rebel, and the free fall that can happen when a woman steps outside the boundaries or breaks the rules set up by the society around her.
In a time in America when the rights of women and people of color are under siege, it’s necessary for us to make theatre that questions: What happens when we awake to the hypocrisies and lies underlying the comforts of our world? What happens when the received wisdoms we took for granted are exposed as hollow and false?
We are asking for your help to take the first steps of creating Haruki Murakami's SLEEP!!!
For more information about Ripe Time, visit us at www.ripetime.org
Risks and challenges
Ripe Time's work always features originally composed scores. What is new for us is a live, improvisational ensemble playing alongside the company! Having New Born Trio in California with us as we rehearse will allow us to learn how to callibrate the improvisational nature of the music to our choreography. It will also help us develop the space and set of the piece with Mimi Lien in residence with us.
And while Berkeley is generously able to house and provide work space for some of our creative team, we need our full ensemble from NYC and San Diego to be in the room together to make this process work. Financing the long term development of our work over years of time is always a huge challenge. But its a crucial part of making the work in the collaborative way that we do.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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