NOON DIVIDE is The Storm Theatre’s third offering from French playwright, poet and diplomat Paul Claudel. Considered one of the 20th century's greatest geniuses, his work has been neglected in the English speaking world. For NOON DIVIDE, Claudel used his own adulterous affair with Rosalie Vetch as inspiration, exploring human sexual passion, and its role within the grand design of salvation.
What at first appears to be a tragedy of doomed love eventually reveals itself as a Divine comedy, much along the lines of his vast epic The Satin Slipper(also inspired by the aforementioned events.) On a ship bound for Hong Kong, a lonely civil servant meets a beautiful, vivacious married woman. Seduction and an ensuing torrid affair lead to surprising consequences. What at first seems a classic example of the French term amor fou (literally translated as "crazy love") eventually reveals itself to be just that, but in quite an unexpected way.
Set and costume design by Laura Taber Bacon, sound design by Jana Hoguland, lighting design by Michael Abrams and stage management by Charles Casano. Directed by Peter Dobbins and Stephen Logan day. With Peter Dobbins (AEA), Chris Kipiniak (AEA), Matthew Waterson (AEA) and Hollis Witherspoon.
ABOUT THE STORM THEATRE
Since 1997, when it was established as a not-for-profit company, The Storm Theatre has drawn upon the resources of its founders, some acting friends and a growing cadre of professional associates whose commitment to theatre has been enhanced by the creative freedom fostered here; as a consequence, utilizing established classics, under-acknowledged gems from the world repertory and vigorous, new visions of life today, The Storm Theatre has succeeded in offering audiences compelling documentation of what it means to be human. In 2007, The Storm Theatre was selected as one of nytheatre.com’s “People of the Year.”
Storms are variously identified with disturbances of the natural atmosphere as well as the landscape of the soul. They can encompass explosions of both an electrical and a passionate nature and have been represented as assaults, sometimes violent, upon fortified citadels or secret, internal retreats. A storm grows from elemental forces and, inevitably, explodes one reality in to another; it is a journey through catharsis to regeneration. Just as the Globe and The Rose portrayed the breadth and complexity of the lives Shakespeare uncovered on those stages, so The Storm was an apt choice to reflect the theatre experiences they hoped to project for their audiences; a reawakening to the awe-inspiring truths of our shared humanity, its beauty and potential.
Peter Dobbins(co-director) is a cofounder and Artistic Director of The Storm Theatre, and has directed such Storm productions as T.S. Eliot’s Murder in the Cathedral, William Saroyan’s The Time of Your Life, Dion Boucicault’s The Shaughraun, and Arrah na Pogue, John Regis’s Stavrogin’s Confession, Stewart Parker’s Spokesong, William Shakespeare’s The Tempest, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Twelfth Night, Karol Wojtyla’s The Jeweler’s Shop, Jeremiah, and Our God’s Brother, the North American Premiere of House of Desires by Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, and the world premieres of The Last Starfighter by Skip Kennon and Fred Landau and Linnea by John Regis. As an actor, he was most recently seen as Jaques in As You Like It. He has also been seen as T. E. Lawrence in Terence Rattigan’s Ross, Alfred Evelyn in Edward Bulwar Lytton’s Money and Lolo in Pirandello’s Henry IV and has played many leading roles in various regional theatres. He received a B.A. in Communications and Theatre from Temple University and attended Southern Methodist University’s Professional Actors Training M.F.A. program. Most recently he directed As You Like It by William Shakespeare.
Stephen Logan Day (co-director) previously directed Ross, The Power and The Glory and Scapin for The Storm Theatre. Most recently, he assisted Peter Dobbins with his direction of As You Like Itand The Time of Your Life. He has also acted at Storm since 1997, appearing in Linnea, Henry IV, Money, Eurydice, The Shaughraun and Murder in the Cathedral. He has also worked on Storm’s productions of Twelfth Night, Stavrogin’s Confession, As You Like It (AD), The Salvage Shop, House of Desires, The Brute, The Surprise (stage manager) and Gillette. His training includes Boston University, Yale Drama School and Uta Hagen.
ABOUT BLACKFRIARS REPERTORY THEATRE
Blackfriars Repertory Theatre, an apostolate of the Dominican Friars of the Province of Saint Joseph, was founded in 1998 by Fr. Peter John Cameron, O.P., as a revival of Blackfriars Theatre (1940-1972)—the first professional religious theatre ever tried in New York City and the oldest continuous Off-Broadway theatre in American stage history. Blackfriars provided the proverbial great first break to several acclaimed theatre artists including playwright Robert Anderson, and actors Geraldine Page, Patricia Neal, Anthony Franciosa, Darren McGavin, and Shelley Berman. Like the original Blackfriars, Blackfriars Rep carries on the mission of “producing plays of artistic merit that reflect the spiritual nature of man and his eternal destiny.” In its ten years of existence, Blackfriars Repertory Theatre has staged over twenty productions in New York City, regionally, and on tour in its commitment to “theatre dedicated to the human drama.”
This performance is made possible with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency.
NOON DIVIDE will be performed from October 29 – November 20, 2010 at The Theatre of the Church of Notre Dame, 114th Street and Morningside Park (1 block from Columbia University) with performances Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 pm. Additional performances Saturday 10/30 at 2pm, Monday 11/1 at 7:30 pm and Thursday 11/4 at 7:30 pm. Tickets are $25 and are available at www.smarttix.com, 212-868-4444.
For more information, visit www.stormtheatre.com.
AS YOU LIKE IT tells the tale of the spirited Rosalind, a young woman banished from her kingdom after her uncle usurps the dukedom from Rosalind’s father. Her cousin Celia goes off in solidarity with her into the wilderness. Together, with Rosalind dressed as a young man, the runaways gallivant through the Forest of Arden. Almost imperceptably, they journey from depression to happiness, with faith eventually triumphing over despair, as they find love and adventure with several strange and charming characters.
Set design by Ken Larson, costume design by Laura Bacon Taber, sound design by Amy Altadonna, lighting design by Michael Abrams, musical composition by Tiffiny Gulla and Ed Martin, and stage management by Charles Casano. Directed by Peter Dobbins.
With Erin Berinard*, Laura Bozzone*, Mauricio Tafur Salgado*, Dinh Doan*, Jose Sanchez*, Harlan Work*, Jimmy Gary Jr, Joe Danbusky*, Michael Ensberg, Gregory Couba*, Peter Dobbins*, Charles Casano, Sawyer Mastrandrea, Robert Carroll, Meghan Bloom Fluitt
*Member of Actor’s Equity Association
THE SATIN SLIPPER is The Storm Theatre’s second offering from French playwright, poet and diplomat Paul Claudel. Considered one of the 20th century's greatest geniuses, his work has been strangely neglected in the English speaking world. This passionate epic, set in the Golden Age of Spain, spans several continents and many years, exploring the clash between human and Divine love and its role in salvation of mankind. In the process, this cosmic romance cuts to the core of human existence in a way that only the greatest of dramas can. Originally nine hours long, Claudel cut the script down to four hours and forty five minutes for its world premiere in 1943 (directed and starring Jean Louis Barrault) at the Commedie Francaise during the Nazi occupation. This production has been abridged to 2 hrs and 45 minutes of sublime story telling.
Much like THE TIDINGS BROUGHT TO MARY, presented last spring as the first part of the Paul Claudel Project, in THE SATIN SLIPPER, Claudel “explores the natures, differences and interactions of human and divine love, and how the resulting conflicts serve a greater plan” said Peter Dobbins, artistic director of The Storm Theatre. The scene is set during the Renaissance at the time of the conquistadors. The play is a love story dominated by the ideas of sin and redemption and the various characters, some divine and some comic, frequently engage in a dialogue as though between Heaven and Earth.