Pick Up Performance Co(s), in collaboration with The Joyce Theater, presents the world premiere of The Beginning of the End of the…, a new movement/theater/music work in two-parts written, directed and choreographed by David Gordon, for an unprecedented four-week engagement at Joyce SoHo from June 1 – 30 (155 Mercer Street, between Houston and Prince Streets). The official opening will take place on Wednesday, June 6.
Beginning of the End of the… is a new movement/theater/music work by David Gordon, a postmodern artist now in his 50th year of creating works. This continues his collaborative adventures in recent years with dead artists such as Brecht, Ionesco and Shakespeare.
For his latest investigation, Gordon uses the Italian, Nobel Prize-winning writer Luigi Pirandello. Adapted from three Pirandello works (the 1921 "Six Characters In Search Of An Author"; the 1911 short story "A Character's Tragedy"; and the 1923 one-act "The Man with the Flower in His Mouth") with music by Pirandello peer Giacomo Puccini, this world premiere explores the emotionally loaded narratives generated from Pirandello's writings & familiar themes including the absurd inconsistencies of "what we see and how we see it."
Beginning of the End of the… includes pedestrian and behavioral movement and gesture plus shadowing and partnering of actors and dancers with rolling scenic devices (and lighting designed by Tony Award-winner Jennifer Tipton) creating simultaneously, on four separate stages, the backstage of a theater, a doctor's office, a dress shop and a leafy green garden.
The company of artists performing in Beginning of the End of the…include established members of the New York dance/theater community, several of whom have appeared in previous David Gordon works. They are,Charlotte Cohen, Scott Cunningham, Norma Fire, Karen Graham, David Gordon, Aaron Mattocks, David Skeist, Gus Solomons Jr., and Valda Setterfield.
David Gordon's commissions for directing &/or choreographing include Actors Studio, American Ballet Theater, American Conservatory Theater, American Repertory Theater, Barbican (London), BBC Channel 4, UK. British Dance Umbrella, Brooklyn Academy Of Music, Dance Theater of Harlem, Dance Theater Workshop, Danspace, Guthrie Theater, Joyce Theater, The Kitchen, KTCA Alive TV, Mark Taper Forum, New York Theater Workshop, On The Boards (Seattle, Wa.), PBS Great Performances, Serious Fun @ Lincoln Center, Spoleto USA, Theater For a New Audience, Walker Art Center, White Oak Dance Project. His awards include two Obies, three Bessies, two Dramalogues, two Guggenheims, two Pew Charitable Trust Grants (in both Theater and Dance), three National Endowment for the Arts' American Masterpiece grants. Current member: The Actors Studio, Center for Creative Research. Previous panel/chair: NEA Dance Program. Founding artist: Grand Union/Judson Church Performances. Previous performer: Yvonne Rainer Co./James Waring Co.
The Pick Up Performance Co. Inc.was founded in 1971 and incorporated in 1978 to facilitate projects by David Gordon, the company was expanded in 1992 to include projects by Ain Gordon, and subsequently renamedThe Pick Up Performance Co(s)in recognition of the plural artistic leadership with individual yearly projects. From his seminal beginnings as a founding artist in the Judson Dance Theater, David Gordon has purposefully examined and expanded the line between theater and dance and pioneered the use of text and textual narrative in movement work. In this early work Gordon not only presaged his later writing and directing for the stage but also predated the live theater form which came to be known as "performance art." Cementing his dual status as a dance and theater artist, Gordon was awarded a Pew Charitable Trust National Dance ResidenCy Grant and National Theater ResidenCy Grant in successive years. In 1992, Ain Gordon (David Gordon's son) joined the company as Co-Director. Starting with his first work in 1983, Ain Gordon found his roots in the performance art world his father helped to create and by the late 1980's he was producing and touring his work nationally. In 1987 Ain Gordon was awarded support from National Endowment's inaugural round of "New Forms" grants – designed specifically for artists who defied clear classification. By 1992, Ain Gordon began a move toward a more continuous emphasis on text-based theater or playwriting. In 1993, Ain Gordon and David Gordon collaborated on The Family Business (as writers, directors, and performers) and received an OBIE for their work. In recent years, at the invitation of Mikhail Baryshnikov, David Gordon directed, choreographed and wrote narration for a tribute to and revival of dance/theater work from the Judson Church era that toured nationally and internationally. His work has also been recently seen at The Joyce Theater, The Actor's Studio, the Barbican in London, On the Boards in Seattle, the Brooklyn Academy Of Music Next Wave Festival at the Harvey and Danspace Project at St. Mark's Church. Alyce Dissette has been the Co.'s producer since 2001 and has worked in various capacities with Ain Gordon and David Gordon for over 25 years.