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Xfest 2016 Performances


R+J: A Telephone Play – or – Don’t Drink the Milk

Equally Represented Arts

Equally Represented Arts, St. Louis
Tuesday, Sept. 13, 7:30 p.m. 
Metcalf Theatre

Sponsored by the SIUE Department of Theatre and Dance

R + J: A Telephone Play is the performance of six new plays created through the context of a game of telephone. Telephone (also known as “don’t drink the milk”) is a game in which one person whispers a message to another person. The message is passed through a line of people until the last player announces the message to the entire group. The original message for this particular game of telephone is the last scene of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. We created an audio recording of this scene and sent it to the first playwright in the line. The playwright listened to the recording and wrote what he/she heard in the form of a play. Then, we sent an audio recording of this new play to the next playwright in the line, and so on…

Critical Praise for Equally Represented Arts

“Few come close to pushing the boundaries like Equally Represented Arts does.  With blooming love, growing pains and a kind of adolescent tumult at its center, with liberal doses of synchronized movement and dance, ERA, under Lucy Cashion’s direction, provides a bold, intriguing night of vignettes, wonderfully executed by her six-member ensemble

“At last, something really fun and fresh and totally different. Imagine everything Romeo and Juliet could be, in a modern context—romantic, snarky, with lots of group dance and teenaged exasperation and humor…Lucy Cashion directs this avalanche of madness, while still maintaining the light, inspired charm of everyone on stage.”


A Zombie Odyssey

theatre simpletheatre simple, Seattle
Wednesday, Sept. 14, 7:30 p.m.
Metcalf Theater

Sponsored by the SIUE College of Arts and Sciences, Visiting Scholar Initiative

Our hero, Brian Smith, embarks on an epic quest to reunite with his wife after his "demise". This intensely physical theatrical experience questions, "What is human, and what makes a monster?" while playing between humor and horror in this zombie radiodrama/physical theater mashup.  Love zombies? It's got all the fights, sex, gore, and nerd references you crave.  Hate zombies? Come anyway! This risky, highly-physical show serves up helpings of drama, humor, horror, and humanity-examining philosophy.

Critical Praise for theatre simple

“Coates prowls the stage like a cross between a Balanchine dancer and a feral animal; turning this gory story into a surprising tale of self-actualization, due to Coates’ thoughtful and thought-provoking script and his winning on-stage presence."

-L'etoile Magazine

“Coates gives a gut-munching master class in physical commitment, baring himself (literally and figuratively) as he beats himself senseless, suffers shock therapy, zips himself into a body bag, and hobbles around on a shattered ankle.”

-Orlando Weekly


Edgar Allan

The ColdhartsThe Coldharts, New York
Thursday, Sept. 15, 7:30 p.m.
Metcalf Theater

Sponsored by the SIUE College of Arts and Sciences Visiting Artist Initiative

Eleven year old Edgar Allan has only one goal: to be the most remarkable boy at boarding school. He has only one obstacle: Edgar Allan. A manic lullaby inspired by the childhood and short stories of Edgar Allan Poe.  Edgar Allan ​is a two­-person musical created and performed by ​Katie Hartman ​​and ​Nick Ryan. It follows eleven year old Edgar Allan​ in his first year at Manor House School (the finest boarding school in all of England,) as he seeks to gain academic ascendancy over the student body. All goes to plan, until another boy named Edgar Allan arrives in class... which complicates his schemes of dominance. ​Edgar Allan ​is a dark, comedic riff on the childhood, the mania, and the insanity that haunted the life and work of America's first professional writer. 

Critical Praise for The Coldharts

“If Edward Gorey were to write a children’s ukulele musical, it would look like this. Hilarious and horrifying in equal measure, Katie Hartman and Nick Ryan’s lovely play about the boyhood of the iconic writer and his new best frenemy at school is a jewel box of a play.”

-E’toile Magazine

Truly staggering dialogue and delicious songs... Don’t think twice about seeing this — it’s as accessible as it is intricate, and the musical joy and sorrow is sorcerous."

-Edmonton Journal



Evil & Good

Chicago Dance CrashChicago Dance Crash, Chicago
Friday, Sept. 16, 7:30 p.m.
Dunham Hall Theatre

Presented by the SIUE College of Arts and Sciences Arts & Issues series and sponsored by Commerce Bank

Inspired by a growing demand for Chicago Dance Crash’s street dance aesthetic, Evil & Good utilizes the company’s signature blend of concert dance and hip-hop, offering a boiled down alternative to its summer annual movement play: sheer, pulse-raising dance. Evil & Good is choreographed and directed by Deahr with additional choreography by CDC Senior Company Kaitlin Webster and Culture Shock Chicago Artistic Director Christopher Courtney. Throwing CDC’s movement capacity into overdrive, Deahr, Webster and Courtney team up to choreograph this explosive full-length conceptual piece featuring a hip-hop blend and is inspired by the world’s constant struggle between its angels and demons. 

Critical Praise for Chicago Dance Crash

“Like a Synergy drink or a Kombucha, Chicago Dance Crash is a pure mix of unadulterated, raw ingredients: a potent surprise upon first taste, and deliciously smooth by drinks end. It’s not about additives for this crew’s natural movers.”

-TimeOut Chicago

“It’s tempting to think of CDC as the “fun” group - the dance company who does flips and tricks and dances in bars. Make no mistake, Chicago Dance Crash is a serious dance company toting serious talent. That, and, a seriously smart marketing strategy. Crash intentionally flirts with the often opposing worlds of concert dance and commercial entertainment, and it appears to be working.”

Xfest is made possible through the generous support of the Office of the Provost, College of Arts & Sciences, the Department of Theater and Dance and audiences like you. 

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