The Wooster Group

THE TOWN HALL AFFAIR

A leading avant-garde group recreates a famous night of radical ideas and debate

Since its foundation in 1975, The Wooster Group has produced multimedia performance work and been a leading presence in the New York arts scene. Its pioneering practice has branched out across theater, dance, film, and video.

The Town Hall Affair is based on a debate on Women’s Liberation that took place at The Town Hall in New York in 1971. In front of a packed audience, the writer Norman Mailer, fresh from publishing The Prisoner of Sex, faced off in a fierce debate against a panel of feminists. This legendary and subsequently much-discussed debate was filmed by D. A. Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus as the documentary Town Bloody Hall.

In The Town Hall Affair, against a backdrop of footage taken from the documentary Town Bloody Hall, performers play the real-life figures that appeared at the debate. This night of virtuoso and virulent jousting is vividly brought back to life for contemporary audiences, framed from the point of view of lesbian journalist Jill Johnston who disrupted the debate and wrote about it afterwards.

The Wooster Group, THE TOWN HALL AFFAIR—Based on the film Town Bloody Hall by Chris Hegedus & D.A. Pennebaker, 2018, Kyoto Art Theater Shunjuza. Photo by Yoshikazu Inoue. The Wooster Group, THE TOWN HALL AFFAIR—Based on the film Town Bloody Hall by Chris Hegedus & D.A. Pennebaker, 2018, Kyoto Art Theater Shunjuza. Photo by Yoshikazu Inoue. The Wooster Group, THE TOWN HALL AFFAIR—Based on the film Town Bloody Hall by Chris Hegedus & D.A. Pennebaker, 2018, Kyoto Art Theater Shunjuza. Photo by Yoshikazu Inoue. The Wooster Group, THE TOWN HALL AFFAIR—Based on the film Town Bloody Hall by Chris Hegedus & D.A. Pennebaker, 2018, Kyoto Art Theater Shunjuza. Photo by Yoshikazu Inoue. The Wooster Group, THE TOWN HALL AFFAIR—Based on the film Town Bloody Hall by Chris Hegedus & D.A. Pennebaker, 2018, Kyoto Art Theater Shunjuza. Photo by Yoshikazu Inoue. The Wooster Group, THE TOWN HALL AFFAIR—Based on the film Town Bloody Hall by Chris Hegedus & D.A. Pennebaker, 2018, Kyoto Art Theater Shunjuza. Photo by Yoshikazu Inoue. The Wooster Group, THE TOWN HALL AFFAIR—Based on the film Town Bloody Hall by Chris Hegedus & D.A. Pennebaker, 2018, Kyoto Art Theater Shunjuza. Photo by Yoshikazu Inoue. The Wooster Group, THE TOWN HALL AFFAIR—Based on the film Town Bloody Hall by Chris Hegedus & D.A. Pennebaker, 2018, Kyoto Art Theater Shunjuza. Photo by Yoshikazu Inoue.

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YEAR
2018
DATES
10.12(Fri)-10.14(Sun)
VENUE
Kyoto Art Center Shunjuza
DURATION
65min.
LANGUAGE
Performed in English with Japanese surtitles
CITY
New York, United States
CATEGORY

The Wooster Group

Founded in 1975, The Wooster Group is based at The Performing Garage in the SoHo neighborhood of lower Manhattan. The Wooster Group regularly tours its productions throughout the United States and internationally and has won Obie Awards, Bessie Awards, and the National Endowment for the Arts Ongoing Ensembles Grant. The Wooster Group makes original works for the theater and integrates visual media, sound, architectonic design, and text with live performance. Since its inception, it has presented more than 40 theatrical, dance, film, and video works has remained at the forefront of experimental theater. It first visited Japan with Early Shaker Spirituals, performed at the Sound Live Tokyo festival in 2015.

www.thewoostergroup.org

Directed byElizabeth LeCompte
With performances byEnver Chakartash, Ari Fliakos, Gareth Hobbs, Greg Mehrten, Erin Mullin, Scott Shepherd, Maura Tierney and Kate Valk
Lighting byJennifer Tipton and Ryan Seelig
Tour Lighting byDavid Sexton
Sound byEric Sluyter and Gareth Hobbs
Video and projections byRobert Wuss
Tour Video and projections byWladimiro Woyno
Additional video byZbigniew Bzymek
Video Cueing System Developed byAndrew Maillet and Wladimiro Woyno
Assistant DirectorsEnver Chakartash and Matthew Dipple
Costumes byEnver Chakartash
Stage ManagerErin Mullin
Technical DirectorJacob Bigelow
Production ManagerBona Lee
ProducerCynthia Hedstrom
General ManagerPamela Reichen
In co-operation withPARC – Japan Center, Pacific Basin Arts Communication
Supported bythe Agency for Cultural Affairs, Government of Japan, Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, Asian Cultural Council (New York)
Presented byKyoto Performing Arts Center at Kyoto University of Art and Design, Kyoto Experiment

ARCHIVE

  • Panel Discussion: about the Wooster Group

  • Talk: Dialogue on Technique (Sessions 1-3)