FOR THE NEW CITY’S DREAM UP FESTIVAL PRESENTS
NEW YORK, July 11 -- In a dark, disorienting immersive movement theater piece, “Girl Inside the Mirror” by Peruvian-Italian director Nicoletta Mandriotti, psychological and physical forces bear down on a Latina girl who travels to a parallel world through a mirror. In this place, her past trauma and current mentality are reflected through the tormenting voices and shadows of her own subconscious, leading her nearer and nearer to her doom. Theater for the New City’s Dream Up Festival will present the work's New York premiere September 6 to 15.
The piece starts in a surreal and blue-colored dreamworld, where we hear the echoing, eerie intoning of the voices of six women dressed in black. Throughout the play, the women perform a series of acts on the girl, at times berating and taunting her in hisses, whispers, and yelled offenses, and at other times adoring her in doting coos. The girl, who exists as two girls at different ages, repeatedly becomes distraught and enraged and pleads in vain both with herself and with the women for the cessation of their torment. The women’s comments turn progressively darker into a demonic, sexualized, and even violent verbal possession of the girl’s body. In a hypnotic chant they drive the calloused and disillusioned girl to the edge of desperation and sever her from any hope of emancipation by her younger self.
“Girl Inside the Mirror” employs Surrealism, Expressionism, Black Humor and Theater of the Oppressed. It plays with the idea of memory and offers a thought-provoking and disturbing glimpse into the psyche of a young girl whose trauma is personified by harsh and relentless entities. Each act has its own aesthetic, featuring different environmental sounds like waves, wind, rain, whispers and more.
Nicoletta Mandriotti (author, director) is a Peruvian-Italian playwright, director, dramaturge, and producer with a BFA in Theater and Communications Science and a recently completed MFA in theater. As a director, she has directed “Ghosts” by Henrik Ibsen, “El que espera en el Balcón” by Gregor Díaz. “Girl Inside the Mirror” was presented at Planet Connections Theater Festivity during its 10th anniversary season. As a producer, she has worked with several independent companies from her Peru as well as international ones. She has worked with Limon Company, Mora Godoy Tango Company and currently HERE's for Prototype Festival (January 2018). Mandriotti received extensive training in movement and dance since she was a child and performed in a piece that received a Latin-American award. She most recently studied Viewpoints and Suzuki with SITI Compay's Ann Bogart and Akkiko Aizawa. She has also studied movement with UME Group, Yuyachkani (Peru) and CELCIT (Argentina). Her work is mostly known for its highly physical and psychological intensity as well as its surrealistic and sensorial approach.
Lighting and set design is by Josh Langman.
The ninth annual Dream Up Festival (www.dreamupfestival.org) is being presented by Theater for the New City from August 26 to September 16. An ultimate new work festival, it is dedicated to the joy of discovering new authors and edgy, innovative performances. Audiences savor the excitement, awe, passion, challenge and intrigue of new plays from around the country and around the world.
The festival does not seek out traditional scripts that are presented in a traditional way. It selects works that push new ideas to the forefront, challenge audience expectations and make us question our understanding of how art illuminates the world around us.
In addition to traditional plays, a unique and varied selection of productions will again be offered, drawing upon a variety of performance genres including musicals, puppetry and movement theater. The Festival's founders, Crystal Field and Michael Scott-Price, feel this is especially needed in our present time of declining donations to the arts, grants not being awarded due to market conditions, and arts funding cuts on almost every level across the country and abroad.
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