HARTFORD, CT, September, 2012 – HartBeat Ensemble and Real Art Ways are pleased to present OCCUPY #S17, a performance to mark the one-year anniversary of Occupy Wall Street. This free, one-night-only event will feature monologues crafted from interviews with Occupy activists conducted throughout the last year. HartBeat Ensemble’s presentation is part of OCCUPY #S17, a national performance event being organized by The Civilians Center for Investigative Theater, the Obie award-winning New York-based theater company known for real life topics as theater. The Civilians invited groups to organize performances in their communities and have made all of their interview source material available for use. Groups from across the nation will gather on September 17 to share in the storytelling of this historic movement.
OCCUPY #S17 performs on Monday, September 17 at 7:30 pm at Real Arts Way located at 56 Arbor Street in Hartford, CT. This performance is free. Seating is limited and available on a first-come-first-serve basis. For further information, please call HartBeat Ensemble at (860) 869-0534.
Theater artists from across the state have been invited to perform at OCCUPY #S17 at Real Art Ways. Participating artists/companies will be HartBeat Ensemble, Hartford Stage Company, ARTFARM, Theater 4, Bated Breath Theater Company, Little Theater of Manchester, and Connecticut playwright Jacques Lamarre. The night will be an evening of curated, directed and performed monologues aimed at illuminating the diverse individual voices behind Occupy, a historic national movement. Additional companies and performers to be announced soon.
Steve Ginsburg, Co-Artistic Director of HartBeat Ensemble, worked at The Civilians earlier this year as the director of OCCUPY YOUR MIND, The Civilians’ project which created the pieces that are now available for free use for OCCUPY #S17. “We had a wildly successful project last year with interviews and performances in New York City and across the country,” says Steve Ginsburg. “I am now thrilled to be back with HartBeat working with theaters across Connecticut to perform the individual stories of Occupiers for the historic one year anniversary.”
Will K. Wilkins who has commissioned Civilian company member, Alex Lambert, to write a play using the investigative methods of The Civilians about crime in Hartford says, “Whether you agree or disagree with their methods and viewpoints, the Occupy movement shifted the tone and substance of the national political discourse. Real Art Ways is delighted to partner with theaters across Connecticut as well as part of this national performance event.”
The Civilians will be performing OCCUPY #S17 at Joe’s Pub at The Public Theater in New York City at the same time as the Connecticut theaters will be performing at Real Art Ways. Some of the other theaters across the country participating are: Kitchen Dog, Dallas, TX, University of Cincinnati, Akron, OH, and Sarah Lawrence, Bronxville, NY. More theaters joining daily!
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HartBeat Ensemble, founded in 2001 by Julia B. Rosenblatt, Steven Ginsburg, and Gregory R. Tate, has been creating original, professional theater based on stories from the community. Through Mainstage plays, Open- Air performances and Education programs. HartBeat makes theater accessible beyond the barriers of class, race or gender. HartBeat Ensemble most recently won Overall Excellence for Ensemble award at the 2012 International NY Fringe Festival. Learn more about HartBeat at www.hartbeatensemble.org.
The Civilians, Center for Investigative Theater founded in 2001, have created twelve original works that have been produced Off Broadway and in over 40 cities nationally and internationally, at theaters such as The Public Theater, Center Theatre Group, La Jolla Playhouse, A.R.T., HBO’s US Comedy Festival, Actors Theatre of Louisville’s Humana Festival, London’s Soho Theatre, and the Edinburgh Festival Fringe (Fringe First Award, 2006). This Beautiful City enjoyed a critically-acclaimed Off-Broadway run at the Vineyard Theater in 2009 receiving Lucille Lortel, Drama League and Drama Desk nominations. Gone Missing ran for seven months at Off-Broadway’s Barrow Street Theater and was cited by The New York Times as one of the “10 Best Plays of 2007.”
On Sunday, June 3rd, Gregory R. Tate, 60, died after a brief struggle with lung cancer, at the Cancer Treatment Center in Zion, Illinois. Tate was a commanding presence in Hartford and its theater scene. Together with Julia Rosenblatt and Steve Ginsburg, he founded HartBeat Ensemble. Their mission – to write and perform theater that asks questions, raises public consciousness, and rouses audiences into action – was something that Tate lived every day. He strove to record the joys, beauty, suffering, and injustices in the city; and then shape that into public performance. Click here to read his full obituary.
“Where do you live?”
I get that question a lot as I’ve been getting to know the people of the Hartbeat Ensemble and their wider circle of talented friends and collaborators. They’re developing a theatrical production called, “Project Turnpike,” partly based on a book I wrote. As we discuss the schedule of upcoming meetings and rehearsals, someone is curious about how far I’ll have to travel to their studios on Pearl Street in Hartford.