Reports from the development of a new play.

January 27th, 2012

Here at Kaatsbaan residency center in upstate NY on a 4 day rehearsal retreat! Dancing, singing, and acting all day on a gorgeous farm-turned-art space makes for the most invigorating rehearsal process I’ve experienced in a long time. We’re sticking tight to a 9 hour per day schedule, with breaks in between to eat delicious meals home cooked by our very own assistant director Katherine Pardue.

We spent much of today building an intricate factory scene, involving intertwining vocal parts, percussion, and original movement. Loom’s collaborative atmosphere is especially pronounced here, as choreographer Neva Cockrell had each of us create our own sequence of movement, then work together to combine pieces of each into one coherent phrase. Meanwhile composer Sasha Bogdanowitsch has assembled a veritable pipe organ of massive PVC tubes to provide a rumbling industrial accompaniment!

Being on this retreat has allowed us to dig deep into both show material, and fundamental technique in the many disciplines we’re incorporating into the show. Whether we’re dancing while connecting to a breath full enough to support challenging singing passages, or singing while acting out complex internal visualizations, Loom, as an ambitious and collaborative ensemble, is pushing us all like never before to grow as artists in many directions at once.

We’re very very excited to share the fruits of all this hard work with you!

Andrew Broaddus, (Performer / Collaborator)

December 19th, 2011

I walked into that first rehearsal on October 7th with no notion of what would come, where we were headed, what show we would be putting on in 2012, what character, what story…it was all unknown to me…but was super exciting. When does an artist get the chance to build something from the ground up? To explore with such a talented and creative team? When do we ever get the freedom of a rehearsal space to call home? A rehearsal period that is more than the normal three week allotment? A chance to learn, grow, and have a voice along the way?

It’s now over ten weeks later since that first day and it’s still super exciting! The pieces of the puzzle we created are magically fitting together from all the material, the show-and-tell, the inspiration and passion that was being brought into the room each rehearsal. The “what if’s” are now a reality and the story and characters have emerged!

It’s the end of Phase Two now. I walked away from the last Phase Two rehearsal yesterday to a winter break before Phase Three begins in January and I can’t wait to do some exploring on my own to who this woman I am playing is. She creeped into me somewhere in those ten weeks and I could not shake her, and now I get to play her! All kinds of images and dimensions are swirling around in my head right now. The official rehearsals may be on break until after the holidays but I can’t stop wanting to know more about this woman, what happens, the story, the fable world we created.

Magic. Pure magic!

Zoe Anastassiou, (Performer / Collaborator)

November 27th, 2011

This week, we’re gearing up to start phase 2 of our rehearsal process for Loom’s newest project – Home Street Office: a fable of love and capitalism.

Phase 1 was six weeks of physical and vocal training, scene building, and explorations in story, character, movement, and music.  Each rehearsal included a Show & Tell segment, where any member of the ensemble could bring forward an idea to play with.  Even the smallest impulses – a single movement idea, a couple pages of text, a few phrases of music – would launch us into a new avenue of experiments.  The goal of Phase 1 was to figure out what play we were going to make, and to have a rough outline of a story that we could move forward with in Phases 2 & 3.

And we did that!  After a month and a half (working twice every week), we were able to map out a character for each member of the ensemble, a sense of the fable world we want to create, the primary locations in the play, clear ideas about how Sasha’s original music plays a role in the story, and a lot of exciting starting points for Neva’s choreography.

Now comes the trickier work – we’ll be upping our rehearsal schedule and really diving in to the themes, characters, and stories we’ve built the foundations for.  Phase 2 of the process will take us through the winter holidays, and then we’re back in January for Phase 3: full-out production rehearsal and preparation for our run at La Mama in mid-February.

Tomi Tsunoda (Director)

October 5th, 2011

Loom’s core group has been busy at work all Summer and early Fall stirring up creative concepts & ideas along with pre-production logistics for our new production due out this Spring entitled, “Lovely Dirt.”  We’re excited to start work on our 2nd production with a new ensemble and director, Tomi Tsunoda. We were recently awarded a Field Emerging Artist Residency and will be presenting a small sneak preview of the new work in January at the Kitchen via the Field’s program before the big premiere in March. Watch for more updates in the coming weeks as our Fall season of rehearsals gear up and we start weaving our Loom again!

 Sasha Bogdanowitsch (Loom Co-Founder / Composer)