This Is the Color Described by the Time is a sound-based performance that draws from threads of Gertrude Stein’s biography living through World War II, her early works, and her letters with playwright Thornton Wilder and Vichy official Bernard Faÿ. The audience wears headphones throughout the performance and listens in on the performers’ conversations and a dense soundscape. The piece is a fractured glimpse inside the mind of this legendary avant-garde writer and examines the inextricable link between the political, personal and artistic.
Conceived & directed by Lily Whitsitt Created by Door 10
Developed as part of the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council's Process Space Program and through the support of the Princess Grace Foundation, New Georges, Baryshnikov Arts Center, Drama League, Stuart Foundation, Biel Fund, and individual donors.
Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, work-in-progress showing. Photos: Paula Court
Baryshnikov Arts Center, work-in-progress showing. Photo: Richard Termine
Never Say You're Wrong
Never Say You're Wrong is about what we think we want, and what we will do to get it. Using classic self-help manuals, how-to books, and studying negotiation tactics, Door 10 investigates questions of value and sacrifice amidst the American obsession with getting ahead and making a buck.
Conceived & directed by Lily Whitsitt Produced & created by Door 10
Stand In is a darkly comic take on the singer-songwriter performance genre, created in collaboration with musician/ performer Eric Lindley (who records under the name Careful). Featuring acoustic songs and personal stories that range from the awkward to the intimate, Stand In is a performance stuck in an eternal state of rehearsal that never quite gets it right. The singer is off, the costume is too small, and something is bound to go wrong.
Conceived & directed by Lily Whitsitt Produced & created by Door 10 JACK
Stand In was developed, in part, with assistance from The Orchard Project, a program of The Exchange (www.exchangenyc.org).
In the comic and grotesque Striptease, two businessmen find themselves inexplicably trapped in a room, unable to escape, compelled to do ridiculous acts by a mysterious force. Explosive physicality, shadow play, and giant puppets illuminate the absurd mechanisms of power.
Directed by Lily Whitsitt By Sławomir Mrożek Produced by The Drama League HERE Arts Center
Photos: Richard Termine
Doctor Faustus Lights the Lights
For this immersive performance the audience sat on swivel chairs in a light-tight black paper box. Over time, the actors slowly cut through the paper, gradually allowing light to penetrate the darkness. With an original score by Eric Lindley, this sensorial hyper-opera highlighted the simultaneous transformation and disorientation that technology can create.
Conceived & directed by Lily Whitsitt By Gertrude Stein Ensemble Theatre
Vatzlav is a panoramic political farce, a biting tale about class and power in the form of a circus. Flying rubber chickens, disheveled clowns, and drag queen stripteases create this raucous and madcap world.
Directed by Lily Whitsitt By Sławomir Mrożek Center For the Arts, Wesleyan University
Adam & Eve
Adam & Eve takes place in a post-apocalyptic landscape with only five survivors, who have been miraculously saved by a mad scientist’s new invention: a camera. It is an exploration of the thin veil of manners and morals that separates society from anarchy. Unfolding on a giant mechanical playing board with swinging lights and moving walls, the players enact a desperate and ridiculous game of survival.
Directed by Lily Whitsitt By Mikhail Bulgakov Walt Disney Modular Theater
Ma Rainey's Black Bottom
Produced by Rehabilitation Through the Arts, this production took place in a gymnasium at a medium security prison in upstate New York. A group of prisoners became the ensemble for the piece, playing all the roles and creating the design and production elements, including Ma Rainey herself, played by a man in drag.
Directed by Lily Whitsitt & Connie Grappo By August Wilson Produced by RTA Fishkill Correctional Facility
The challenge: a group of six artists (a theater director, a musician, two filmmakers, an illustrator, and an actor) are asked to gather in Paris to collaboratively create a work of art in one week. They are from France, Germany, Iran, and the U.S. In the diverse 19th arrondissement, we made short-form performances investigating anxiety, stereotypes, and miscommunication. A raucous and humorous site-specific theatrical event about the folly that can occur when we don’t understand each other.
Created by Lily Whitsitt, J.B. Saurel, Lætitia Bénichou, Jana Papenbroock, Bijan Tavili, and Louise Belmas. Produced by Feldstärke International Centquatre, Paris