Working under [her] brought me immense joy…I’ve never seen someone infuse social justice concepts, identity affirmation, and artistry into a rehearsal process where the play wasn’t written to create those spaces for these conversations.
Shakespeare without Sight or Sound
Shakespeare without Sight or Sound was a project Rachel developed for dog & pony dc’s Sense-Able initiative consisting of two translations of Shakespearian texts into performances without any visual or auditory elements. Rachel posed these questions at the start of the project to the mixed hearing and Deaf, sighted, and otherwise non-disabled ensemble: What are our assumptions and biases about how theatre should be made and experienced? How can we work to overcome them? What art-forward techniques can we develop to make change in ourselves, audiences, and, eventually, the field? (The artist groups varied in race and gender expressions.) Rachel oversaw the trajectory of Shakespeare without and its intersection with Gallaudet University’s “ProTactile Theatre Institute,” for which Rachel was a theatre artist advisor.
Translation 1: Sense-Able: a play and its rewrite Seven Ages: your life through the senses were based on the As You Like It “Seven Ages of Man” speech. They were a show for one audience member. Rachel joined the devising team for Seven Ages and was an alternate performer.
Translation 2: Party On was based on act 1, sc 5 of Romeo & Juliet. It was a show for up to six audience members. Rachel served as “artistic director”/advisor, and facilitated all post-performance reflection discussions with audience and artists.
Video compliments of dog & pony dc and Gallaudet University.
Coming soon: video of Party On!
SENSE-ABLE: A PLAY RAN September 29, 30 & October 1, 2016 at
Warehouse Industries’ Third Floor for ~6 10-min shows a nighT. SEVEN AGES: your life through the senses ran May 20, 2017 at Gallaudet university for 4 50-min shows for the day. Party on ran September 28, 30 & October 1, 2017 at Gallaudet university for 12 45-min shows.
Sense-Able & Seven Ages Show Description: Could your expectations of a play be met if you could neither see nor hear the performance? Many of us cannot imagine theatre like this, yet we have three other senses–taste, touch, and smell–that inspire and move us just as vividly. This places you at the heart of the theatrical experience and stretches your concept of what defines “a play.” This is a performance-for-one. Interpreters will be positioned at the box office but the show itself does not have interpreters because there are not auditory or visual elements.
Sense-Able: a play
Directed by Lorraine Ressegger-Slone & Ben Lauer
Featuring: Ehmonie Hainey, Ben Lauer, Aarron Loggins, Nick Martin, Rebekah Mason, Lorraine Ressegger-Slone, Emily Stemper-Layton
Seven Ages: your life through the senses
Directed by Lorraine Ressegger-Slone
Featuring: Jordana Fraider, Natasha Gallop, Kala Granger, Andrew Morrill & Lorraine Ressegger-Slone
Devising Support James Caverly & Rachel Grossman
Sense-Able & Seven Ages Show Description:Hot/Cold. Rough/Smooth. Push/Pull. Immerse yourself in a world of Capulet and Montague opposites in dog & pony dc’s next sensory-centered translation of Shakespeare, Party On. An activation of your senses of touch, smell, and taste, Party On places you at the heart of the theatrical experience and stretches your concept of what defines a play. Party On is an intimate show, experienced by an audience of six people but accommodated for each individual. Party On has no auditory or visual elements, and so is neither captioned nor interpreted. ASL interpreters will be positioned at the box office. Accessible to people with mobility restrictions. Recommended for ages 16+.
Devised by Navid Azeez, Kala Granger, Tosin Olufolabi & Lorraine Ressegger-Slone
Directed by Lorraine Ressegger-Slone
Performed by Navid Azeez, Jordana Fraider, Natasha Gallop, Kala Granger, Aarron Loggins, Elaine Yuko Qualter & Carol Spring