Playful and personal, Rooming House synthesizes contemporary dance and theater to create a dynamic blueprint for exploring the question: what makes a person do something that could have life changing consequences? Rooming House begins with an intimate conversation among friends, slipping easily between Spanish and English, as they recall stories of people who’ve taken actions with potentially devastating costs. When the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice is mentioned, varied interpretations propel the group into a physically and psychologically complex game of whodunit, taking them down a rabbit hole into the lives of everyday people who do extraordinary things—from life endangering rescues, to defecting from Cuba, to letting go of someone you love.
PREMIERE: Steppenwolf 1700 Theatre - Chicago, IL, November 2017
CO-CREATORS: Julia Rhoads and Leslie Buxbaum Danzig
DEVISED IN COLLABORATION WITH AN ENSEMBLE OF SIX PERFORMERS: Kara Brody, Michel Rodriguez Cintra, Elizabeth Luse, Rodolfo Sánchez Sarracino, A. Raheim White, Meghann Wilkinson
ORIGINAL MUSIC: Michael Caskey
LIGHTING DESIGN: Alexander Ridgers
PRODUCTION STAGE MANAGER(2019): Rachel Damon
STAGE MANAGEMENT (2017): Ariela Subar
SOUND ENGINEER: Bradford Chapin (2017), Dennis Huston (2019)
Support for Rooming House is made possible, in part, by creation grants from National Endowment for the Arts, MacArthur International Connections Fund, Network of Ensemble Theaters, 3Arts, and the Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation. Major development support through production residencies was provided by NC State LIVE (Raleigh, NC) and Door Kinetic Arts Festival (Bailey’s Harbor, WI), and creation residency support was provided by City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, and Danza Teatro Retazos (Havana, Cuba). Additional production support provided by University of Chicago’s Center for Theater and Performance Studies and Steppenwolf 1700 Theatre.