|The Man Who Ate Michael Rockefeller
| Open: 09/10/10 Close: 10/03/10
DOG RUN REP is presenting the world premiere of The Man Who Ate Michael Rockefeller, a new play by Jeff Cohen based on the short story by Christopher Stokes, directed by Alfred Preisser (ARCHIBISHOP SUPREME TARTUFFE, Caligula Maximus) . In 1961, Michael Rockefeller, 23 years old, disappeared among the Asmat People of Papua, New Guinea. He was never heard from again. This is the story of what might have happened, told by the Asmat people.
The disappearance of Michael Rockefeller remains one of the great unsolved mysteries of the past 50 years. The Man Who Ate Michael Rockefeller takes the audience on a journey to the Asmat region of Papua, New Guinea where cannibalism and head-hunting were still a vital part of centuries-old traditions. At the time of his disappearance, Michael Rockefeller, son of New York Governor Nelson Rockefeller, was already a well-respected cultural anthropologist with a deep passion for exploring the unknown. “It’s the desire to do something romantic and adventurous,” he said, “at a time when frontiers, in the real sense of the word, are disappearing.” Michael Rockefeller also knew that Western contact with the “primitive” world was destroying that world. Even in 1961, in less remote areas of the region, native peoples were wearing pants and losing their way of life. Rockefeller observed: “The West thinks in terms of bringing advance and opportunity to such a place. In actuality we bring a cultural bankruptcy.” A cottage industry has grown up around the incident. Fueled, no doubt, by the celebrity of the Rockefeller name, and similarities to the great Conrad story Heart of Darkness, the disappearance has spawned films, books, television episodes and articles, including in Oui Magazine (April, 1977) an article titled: Is This The Man Who Ate Michael Rockefeller? Christopher Stokes story (and Cohen’s stage adaptation) turn the tables on this industry, telling the story as the Asmats themselves might have told it, and challenging our Western cultural biases.
The cast for Michael Rockefeller includes David Brown, Jr. (The Exonerated ), Shannon A.L. Dorsey, Tracy Jack, David King (Black Angels over Tuskegee, Caligula Maximus), Sean Lum, Tyshawna Maddox, Daniel Morgan Shelley (Othello, Saturnalia, Romeo & Juliet, Julius X), Aaron Strand (Caligula Maximus) and Rawle "Fitz" Wiliams.
The production team includes Heather Wolensky (sets), Jay Scott (lights), Kimberly Glennon (costumes) and choreography by Track Jack.
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