Ridge Theater continues to be one of America’s premier innovators of multimedia theater, opera, and new-music performance. Our epic visual and aural works continue to redefine the traditional theatrical vocabulary. Dramatic staging by director Bob McGrath, haunting film works and projections by filmmaker Bill Morrison and visual stylings by artist Laurie Olinder are all hallmarks of the Ridge Theater style.
We are proud and happy to continue our ongoing collaborations with world-class composers, playwrights, performers, and artists.
Lulu: A Case of Rhyme and Punishment is a contemporary opera inspired by Frank Wedekind's tragic masterpiece. It is the disturbingly dark chronicle of Lulu, a young woman living in fin-de-siecle Vienna, groomed from childhood by a predatory father figure. In turn Lulu is an astute instinctual seducer and predator in her own right who rips through the lives of all who love her like a perfect storm of despair and death. Told through the sympathetic eyes of her friend and lover the Countess Gesch the opera paints Lulu's downward spiral and inevitable bad end with an eclectic musical palate of rap, Kurt Weill, and art rock. In the blurred Kafkaesque realm of a circus, courtroom, and boudoir, the audience are voyeurs to abuses of power and the cycles of trauma and secondary trauma they perpetuate. Through the use of multimedia we create a hallucinogenic, contorted German Expressionist world, a circus where the masks of the performers are frighteningly revealing and a courtroom filled with prying eyes that is really an operating theater. Human desire, in all its complexity, is a mystery, a pandora's box that this opera unlocks.
Eastern Connecticut State University, Proscenium Theater
Written by Maluca Mala, Jennifer Charles, Joseph Budenholzer, and Bob McGrath; Music by Joseph Budenholzer, Jennifer Charles, and Oren Bloedow; Featuring Maluca Mala, Jennifer Charles, John Dossett, Jordan Goldston, and Emmitt George; Projection Design by Dylan James Amick, and Kristen Morgan; Dramaturgy/Video by Donald Campbell; Directed by Bob McGrath
Fantini Futuro is a new audio-visual performance work by Ben Neill for the mutantrumpet, his self-designed electro-acoustic instrument, countertenor, Baroque keyboards, and interactive video projections. The piece is based on the music and life of early Baroque trumpeter/composer Girolamo Fantini, who was responsible for bringing the trumpet indoors from the hunt and the battlefield to the realm of art music. The narrative depicts Fantini as a traveler through time and space, from the 17th century to the future, and reflects on the transformative power of current technology using the history of the trumpet as a metaphor.
Roulette, Brooklyn and Ramapo College
Composed by Ben Neill; Featuring Ben Neill, Ryland Angel and Gwendolyn Toth; Directed by Bob McGrath
Part multimedia opera, part conceptual art, Anatomy Theatre conjures a time when “specialists” traveled from town to town in pre-modern Europe, dissecting the corpses of executed criminals to seek evidence of corruption in the interior of the human body.
A joyous, grisly theatrical event by Pulitzer Prize winning composer David Lang, and world-renowned conceptual artist Mark Dion. Featuring wild Up Ensemble at the LA Opera, and featuring the International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE) at BRIC In Brooklyn.
LA Opera, and BRIC In Brooklyn.
Music by David Lang; Libretto by Mark Dion & David Lang; A Ridge Theater Production; Directed by Bob McGrath; Film by Bill Morrison; Projections Design by Laurie Olinder; Scenic Design by Mark Dion; Lighting Design by Christopher Kuhl; Costume Design by Alixa Gage Englund; Conducted by Christopher Rountree; Creative Producer Beth Morrison; Featuring ICE International Contemporary Ensemble; Produced by Beth Morrison Projects.
Anatomy Theatre was commissioned by Ridge Theater, and Beth Morrison Projects; Presented by LA Opera, and BRIC
Peabody Southwell as Sarah Osborne, Marc Kudisch as Joshua Crouch, Robert Osborne as Baron Peel, Timur Bekbosunov as Ambrose Strang
Written by Tennessee Williams; Directed by Bob McGrath; Projections by Laurie Olinder.
Based on Euripides’ “The Trojan Women.”
A tragedy by Joseph Budenholzer, and Bob McGrath; Music by Joseph Budenholzer; Projections by Laurie Olinder.
An opera based on an Ambrose Bierce tale about an inquest into the strange disappearance of an Alabama planter just before the Civil War.
Composed by David Lang; Libretto by Mac Wellman; Films by Bill Morrison; Projections by Laurie Olinder; Set Design by Jim Findlay; Costume Design by Ruth Pongstaphone; Lighting Design by Matt Frey; Dramaturgy by Daniel Zippi; Directed by Bob McGrath.
"The Difficulty of Crossing a Field" was made possible in part by a grant from the Association of Performing Arts Presenters Ensemble Theatre Collaborations Grant Program, a component of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation Theatre Initiative.