La MaMa presents the World Premiere of YOU, MY MOTHER, a production by the Obie Award-winning performance group Two-Headed Calf. YOU, MY MOTHER is an opera project in two parts, created by composer Brendan Connelly and playwright Karinne Keithley Syers, Obie Award-winning composer Rick Burkhardt and playwright Kristen Kosmas, directed by Brooke O'Harra, with music performed by Yarn/Wire + Strings.
YOU, MY MOTEHR runs Off-Broadway through February 20, 2012 in a limited engagement at La MaMa's Ellen Stewart Theatre, located at 66 East 4th Street between 2nd Avenue & the Bowery in New York City. Performances are Thursdays – Sundays at 7:30pm, along with Saturdays matinees at 2:30pm and an additional performance on Monday, February 20 at 7:30pm. Tickets are $25 for adults and $20 for students/seniors and can be purchased online at http://LaMaMa.org, in person at the box office or by calling 212-475-7710. The running time is 80 minutes. For more information visit http://www.TwoHeadedCalf.org.
YOU, MY MOTHER, a chamber opera project in two parts, is an elusive investigation into the ever-shifting relationships between mothers and their adult children. Director Brooke O'Harra and composer Brendan Connelly (co-founders of the Two-Headed Calf) have expanded their collaborative arms to include playwright Kristen Kosmas (Hello Failure at PS 122), playwright Karinne Keithley Syers (Joyce Cho member) and composer Rick Burkhardt (Three Pianos at New York Theater Workshop, Nonsense Company member).
The piece is performed by Two-Headed Calf regulars Laryssa Husiak and Mike Mikos, along with new music vocalists Kate Soper (Wet Ink Ensemble) and Beth Griffith (musical affiliations include John Cage, Morton Feldman and Karlheinz Stockhausen). Accompanying them is the acclaimed new music ensemble Yarn/Wire + Strings, consisting of Ian Antonio (percussion), Laura Barger (piano), Russell Greenberg (percussion), Joshua Modney (violin), Mariel Roberts (cello) and Ning Yu (keyboard).
The creative team also includes Barbara Lanciers (Choreography), Ahram Jeong (Projection Design), Chris Kuhl (Scenic and Light Design), Yoonkyung Lim (Projection Design), Alice Taverner (Costume Design) and Justin Townsend (Scenic and Light Design). Lisa McGinn is the Production Manager.
Two-Headed Calf, formerly known as The Theatre of a Two-Headed Calf, was born in 1999 in New Orleans. Since then, co-founders Brooke O'Harra and Brendan Connelly have created work at La MaMa, PS 122, The Perishable Theater, The Ontological-Hysteric Theater and the HERE Arts Center, among other venues. They received an Obie Award in 2008, as did company member Heidi Schreck for her performance in Drum of the Waves of Horikawa.
Two-Headed Calf's work is about layering, a careful consideration of all the formal elements of Theater, from lights and set, to words, music and movement. Their work comes out of long rehearsal periods, conceived from the outset as intense collaborations between director, actor, designer, choreographer and composer. The result is a dense, playful conversation that tries to engage the audience viscerally and mentally. Their house band is the new music ensemble Yarn/Wire.
In 2008, the Two-Headed Calf added a department: The Dyke Division of the Two-Headed Calf, which runs the ongoing lesbian soap opera, Room for Cream. Both Brooke and Brendan have been participants in the TCG/NEA Career Development Program.
Time Out NY called Two-Headed Calf's Drum of the Waves of Horikawa a "wildly inventive treat" and The New York Times described it as "lively and exploratory." Time Out NY called their production of Trifles "something spare and strange and very, very new" and The Village Voice described Room for Cream as "naughty, sloppy, and unfailingly large-hearted." The New York Times admired their production of Major Barbara saying, "There is something true and real that shines out from the director Brooke O'Harra's version."