Thursday, August 15, 2019

MEET THE 2019 NOMINEES: Befuddled 101

Befuddled! Or, 101 Reasons to Thank Your God for Donald J Trump, Vladimir J Putin, and My Dad Who's a Dick!
Written and Directed by Rob Reese

Rodney Umble as The Monologist
Lexi Orphanos as The Stage Manager
Monica Furman as The Russian Translator

NOMINATED FOR: Outstanding Performance Art Production
Photos by Rob Reese

L-R: Monica Forman, Rodney Umble, Lexi Orphanos


Monologist Max Silver is jolted from his mundane existence into a schizophrenic Max Headroom style dystopia. An immediate intersection of his parental resentments, his painful breakup, a deficient understanding of American politics, Russian history, artistic manifestos, and every bit of media he’s ever consumed result in a hilariously failed journey of self-discovery.

A manic, multi-media event featuring vodka shots, vaudeville dance, slapstick and wholesale theft from established artists.

Join Max as he endures breakneck cue-calling and biting criticism by his antagonistic Stage Manager Laventry Beria, and incomprehensible heckling by Ivan The Translator.


What attracted you to working on this project?
After touring through much of eastern Europe with The Wooster Group, Piloblous Dance, and other companies I became fascinated with the effects of Communism and dictatorships on peoples' lives. The piece that resulted is an expression of those ideas through my own biographical filter.

What was your favorite part of working on this production? And why?
The incredibly creative collaboration from the performers is what made this piece stand out. Their individual artistic visions and playful professionalism were fundamental to this process.

What was the most challenging part of working on this production? And why?
The performer (Lexi Orhpanos) embodying the 'role' of the Stage Manager was not only performing her character, but was actually firing the tech of the exhibition as a real Stage Manager would. This is >100 cues on several different machines interactively displaying video, audio, and lighting cues.

What do you want the audience to come away with after watching your production?
Confusion! Any entrenched opinion an audience member has about any of the topics addressed in our exhibition should have at least been shaken.

Why are the nominees from this production awesome?
They are talented, engaging artists who also couldn't be nicer, smarter, or easier to work with.

Was there anything odd, quirky, innovative, funny or otherwise noteworthy about your experience with this production?
Almost nothing about this show wasn't odd, quirky, innovative, or funny. I'm sorry the honest answer is the least press-worthy.

What does this nomination mean to you?
Amnesia Wars has been doing Comedy and Theater for >20 years and Performance art for merely 3. This nomination gives us some level of "credential" in performance art.

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