Genre: Drama, Musical
a music-theater piece by Obie-winner Elizabeth Swados and Erin Courtney of 13P

KASPAR HAUSER: a foundling's opera is a true tale about a wild child found on the streets of Nuremburg in 1828. With a story much like a Dickens novel, the piece explores all the good and evil that happens when an innocent is introduced into society. Kaspar Hauser is a fairy tale, a fable, and a Brechtian gaze at our addiction to stars (and the tabloids) and the society that lifts them up only to slam them down.

Says Swados, "KASPAR HAUSER is a musical theater piece, you might call it an opera, somewhere between Beethoven and Queen, and it only could be done in its first version at the Flea, a theater that is both brave and strict about quality. And then there are the amazing Bats, a repertory company of highly energetic and talented actors who also sing with voices that range from Janis Joplin to Bjork to John Mayer. The Flea is an artistic home where anything can happen."

This World Premiere features 19 members of The Bats, The Flea's resident acting company: Adrienne Deekman, Jennifer Fouché, Beth Griffith, Nicolas Greco, Joseph Dale Harris, Arlo Hill, Michael Hopewell, Amy Jackson, Erica Livingston, Chad Lindsey, Vella Lovell, Preston Martin, Kelly McCormack, Colin Mew, Jason Najjoum, Eliza Poehlman, Hannah Shankman, Marshall York and Carly Zien. The creative team includes Kris Kukul (Musical Director), Mimi Quillin (Movement Director), John McDermott (Set Designer), Jeanette Yew (Lighting Designer), Normandy Sherwood (Costume Designer), and Sam Goldman (Sound Designer).

About the Company: The Flea

The Flea Theater, under Artistic Director Jim Simpson and Producing Director Carol Ostrow, is one of New York's leading off-off-Broadway companies. Winner of a Special Drama Desk Award for outstanding achievement, Obie Awards and an Otto for political theater, The Flea has presented nearly 100 plays and numerous dance and live music performances since its inception in 1996. Past productions include the premieres of Anne Nelson’'s The Guys; five plays by A.R. Gurney (Post Mortem, O Jerusalem, Screenplay, Mrs. Farnsworth and A Light Lunch); Mac Wellman'’s Cellophane and Two September; Roger Rosenblatt's Ashley Montana Goes Ashore... and The Oldsmobiles; Elizabeth Swados’ JABU and Kaspar Hauser; Karen Finley's Return of the Chocolate Smeared Woman; Adam Rapp'’s Bingo with the Indians; Will Eno’'s Oh, The Humanity and other exclamations; Dawn by Thomas Bradshaw; The Great Recession; Jonathan Reynold's’ Girls in Trouble; and most recently Parents’ Evening by Bathsheba Doran.

Open:   02/13/09
Close:   03/28/09

Wednesday – Saturday at 7pm, and Saturday matinees at 3pm.
Theater:   Flea Theater Mainstage
Address:   41 White Street
New York, NY 10013
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Closest Subway: N,R to Canal Street; walk south to White, west to theatre

Buy Tickets Online or Call: www.theflea.org at 212-352-3101.
Company: The Flea         Official Web Site: www.theflea.org

Elizabeth Swados has composed, written, and directed over 30 theater pieces including The Trilogy, Nightclub Cantata, Runaways, Alice in Concert, Doonesbury, Rap Master Ronnie, The Haggadah, Jonah, Job, Esther, Jerusalem with Yehudah Amichai, The 49 Years, and Missionaries. Her work has been performed on and off Broadway at venues including The Flea, La MaMa, The Public Theater, Manhattan Theatre Club, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Carnegie Hall and at locations all over the world. She has published novels, non-fiction books, children’s books and poetry. Recent productions include Atonement, a theatrical oratorio presented by the Cathedral of St. John the Divine; her own adaptation of S. Ansky’s The Dybbuk at NYU/Tisch; Spider Operas at PS122 (with Mabou Mines); and Political Subversities, a political revue at both The Culture Project and Joe’s Pub. My Depression: A Picture Book, was published in April 2005 and her theater textbook, At Play: Teaching Teenagers Theater, was published in June 2006. A new book of poetry, The Handcuff King, will be published by Hanging Loose Press this fall. Ms. Swados recently wrapped a children’s CD, Everyone is Different, in conjunction with Forward Face in March, 2007. Awards: Five Tony nominations, three Obie Awards, Guggenheim Fellowship, Ford Grant, Lila Acheson Wallace Grant, PEN Citation, and others. Most recently Ms. Swados received a special grant to record selections from all of her music from over the past thirty years. These new renderings of her music will be available on CD and the Internet over the next three years.


Erin Courtney’s plays have been produced or developed by Clubbed Thumb (Alice The Magnet, Demon Baby, Pricked, Summer Play, Downwinders), The Public Theater (Demon Baby), The Flea (Mother’s Couch), The Actors Theater of Louisville (Owls), The Vineyard (Alice The Magnet). Quiver and Twitch was produced at New York Stage and Film at Vassar in 2006. She is currently writing a new play, Black Cat Lost, that has been commissioned by Soho Rep. She has been a resident at the MacDowell colony, a recipient of a NYSCA grant and a MAP Fund grant from the Rockefeller Foundation. Demon Baby is included in the anthology “New Downtown Now” edited by Mac Wellman and Young Jean Lee, published by University of Minnesota Press. She is an affiliated artist with Clubbed Thumb, a member of the Obie award winning collective 13P, as well as the co-founder of the Brooklyn Writer’s Space. MFA, Brooklyn College. BA, Brown University.