BY BRANDEN JACOBS-JENKINS | WINTER MAIN STAGE
TAPS Winter Main Stage, Everybody, is a 2018 Pulitzer Prize Finalist in Drama by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins, directed by TAPS Artistic Director Prof. Michael Rau. This modern riff on the fifteenth-century morality play Everyman follows Everybody (chosen from amongst the cast by lottery at each performance) as they journey through life’s greatest mystery — the meaning of living.
In Everybody, the lottery of life is made literal: the actors’ roles, including the eponymous protagonist, are decided by lottery each night. There are 120 possible casting permutations, making it likely that the show you see is unfolding, before your eyes, for the first time. As we accompany Everybody on their journey towards death — a matter of chance on both stage and in life — we ponder the meaning of Love, Friendship, and how not to die alone.
ABOUT THE PLAYWRIGHT
One of this country’s most original and illuminating writers.
BRANDEN JACOBS-JENKINS is a celebrated modern playwright; his plays Gloria and Everybody were both Pulitzer Prize finalists, and he is the recipient of an Obie Award, Steinberg Playwright Award, and was named a MacArthur Fellow in 2016.
Jacobs-Jenkins draws from a range of contemporary and historical theatrical genres to engage frankly with complicated issues around identity, family, class, and race. Many of Jacobs-Jenkins’s plays use a historical lens to satirize and comment on modern culture, particularly the ways in which race and class are negotiated in both private and public settings. Although the provocation of his audience is purposeful, Jacobs-Jenkins’s creation of unsettling, shocking, often confrontational moments is not gratuitous; these elements are of a piece with the world he has established on stage and in the service of the story he is telling. Image and Text by John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
MICHAEL RAU (Director) is a live performance director specializing in new plays, opera, and digital media projects. He has worked internationally in Germany, Brazil, the UK, Ireland, Canada, and the Czech Republic. He has created work in New York City at Lincoln Center, The Public Theater, PS122, HERE Arts Center, Ars Nova, The Bushwick Starr, The Brick, 59E59, 3LD, and Dixon Place. Regionally, his work as been seen at the Ingenuity Festival in Cleveland OH, and the American Repertory Theatre in Cambridge, MA. He has developed new plays at the Eugene O’Neill National Playwrights Conference, the Lark, and the Kennedy Center. Michael Rau is a recipient of fellowships from the Likhachev Foundation, the Kennedy Center, and the National New Play Network. He has been a resident artist at the Orchard Project, E|MERGE, and the Tribeca Performing Arts Center. Rau is a Forward/Story fellow and a speaker at Books in Browsers, StoryCode, and RailsConf2016. He has been an associate director for Anne Bogart, Les Waters, Robert Woodruff, and Ivo Van Hove. He is a New York Theater Workshop Usual Suspect and a member of the Lincoln Center Directors Lab. He is a graduate of Wesleyan University and received his MFA in Theater Directing from Columbia University.
SARA C. WALSH (Scenic Designer + Mohr Visiting Artist) is a New York based artist, designer, and teacher. Her work investigates boundaries and rules, transformation and surprise, and the shifting expectations of audience and performer. She is a member of wolf 359 in NY and Resident Designer at Wellfleet’s Harbor Stage Theatre on Cape Cod. Her work has been presented in New York at Lincoln Center, St Ann’s Warehouse, PS122, the Ontological-Hysteria Theatre, The Kitchen, New York Live Arts, Women’s Project, and Classic Stage Company; as well as across the country including A.R.T., The Wexner Center, The San Diego Museum of Art and the Institute of Contemporary Art/Boston. She was Head of Design on the immersive nightclub experience Queen of the Night, “New York’s hottest nightlife event” (New York Magazine). Sara’s designs have been presented in Germany, Ireland, Scotland and France, and she recently designed and co-directed the North American tour of Emily’s D+Evolution for the Grammy Award winning musician Esperanza Spalding. She has worked with comedians Jerry Seinfeld, Colin Quinn, and Hasan Minaj, and was associate designer on a new ballet with Basil Twist, “Dorothy and the Prince of Oz”.
BECKY BODURTHA (Costume Designer) is a costume designer with regional, international, and New York City credits. Recent credits include Felix Starro (Theatre Ma-Yi), Open (The Tank), 1000 Nights and One Day (Prospect Theatre Company), and Mr. Burns (NYU Gallatin). Other credits: Constellations (Wilma), The Strangest (East 4th Street), ACE (Margorie Deane), Among the Dead (Theatre Ma-Yi) Passover (Cherry Lane) The Wong Kids in the Secret of the Space Chupacabra, Go! (Theatre Ma-Yi), Livin’ La Vida Imelda (Theatre Ma-Yi), and This Lingering Life (HERE Arts). International credits include Movement for Humanity and Africa’s Hope for the Ubumuntu Festival in Kigali, Rwanda. Becky is the resident costume designer for Vermont Shakespeare Festival where she recently designed Taming of the Shrew and Julius Caesar. She received her undergraduate degree from Waldorf College and her MFA from the University of Iowa.
TONY SHAYNE (Lighting Designer) has formerly toured with and served in the roles of PM/TD for ODC, REDCAT, and Rosanna Gamson/Worldwide, and worked at some of California’s best colleges including UCLA, CalArts, Berkeley & UC Davis. His more recent works include helping realize the Mad Max inspired dance experience Fury premiere at August Hall and with Music Academy of the West with the West Coast premiere of Jennifer Higdon’s Cold Mountain. When not working on a new production Tony has the tremendous pleasure of being a Lecturer at Stanford University where he endeavors to promote new and passionate advocates for dance, opera, and performance art. He enjoys teaching Hands-on Technical Theater, Lighting Design, and Producing, as well as working with student designers and technicians.
BRITTANY MELLERSON (Sound Designer) is an East Coast native and a graduate of Point Park University’s Conservatory Program with a BFA in Theatrical Lighting & Sound design. Brittany is the resident lighting designer for Lamplighters Music Theatre. Recent credits include lighting design for the revival of Roger Grunwald’s The Obligation, the PlayGround Festival of New Works, A Little Night Music and Pirates of Penzance with Lamplighters, Graveyard Shift with SF Playhouse’s Sandbox Series, the 47th Annual Telluride Film Festival. Up Next: Retablos with ZSpace’s Word for Word.
ALETA HAYES (Choreographer) is a singer, dancer, actor, choreographer and lecturer in Contemporary Dance and Performance in the Department of Theater and Performance Studies at Stanford University. She is the Artistic Director of Chocolate Heads Movement Band which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year. An alumna of Stanford in the Drama Department, Aleta returned to the university as a Ford Foundation Artist Fellow in 2005. Her teaching includes pedagogically innovative classes combining embodied research, theory, practice and performance, channeled through the lens of dance and movement. In 2009 Hayes founded a cross-genre and dance- driven performance troupe including dancers, musicians, visual and spoken word artists, called the Chocolate Heads Movement Band which has performed at Stanford TedX, Bing Concert Hall and the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts and others.
The closing performance (Saturday March 7) has been cancelled as a cautionary response to the COVID-19 virus.
Thu Feb 27 through Sat Feb 29 at 8pm
Thu Mar 05 through
Sat Mar 07 at 8pm
This production performs in Roble Studio Theater located in Roble Gymnasium at 375 Santa Teresa Street.
For safety reasons, we cannot accommodate late admission to our performances. Please plan on arriving with ample time to find parking, locate the theater, etc.
This production runs approximately 90 minutes and is presented without intermission.
Scenic Designer Sara C. Walsh’s Winter residency at TAPS was made possible through the generosity of the Nancy and Larry Mohr and the Mohr Visiting Artist Program.
All TAPS productions are made possible in part by the Pigott Fund for Drama.
The Drs. Ben and A. Jess Shenson Fund helps provide musical accompaniment for TAPS courses and rehearsals, including those used for this production of Everybody.
THE CREATIVE PROCESS
TAPS’s video series TABLEWORK features live roundtable discussions broadcast on social media, where members of production creative teams and casts talk through their processes, goals, and challenges, sharing a window into the immense scholarly and creative efforts that serve as the foundation of TAPS performances. This episode features Everybody Director Michael Rau; Scenic Designer and Mohr Visiting Artist Sara C. Walsh; Costume Designer Becky Bodurtha; and Production Dramaturge Suhaila Meera.