Valeria's Wings... Is That Like an Airline or Something?!
No! We are aerialists, which means we do stuff like this:
"Memphis is incredibly rich in all genres of the arts: dance, theatre, music, visual arts," says Val Russell, artistic director of Valeria's Wings. "But one thing that is really lacking in this city is a strong physical theatre company making cutting-edge, groundbreaking work. Cities like New York, Chicago, San Francisco have really amazing companies like Streb and Pilabolus... Long-term, I want to bring that to Memphis. Short-term, this show will be the first step toward educating the Memphis public about this exciting movement."
Where is "The Great American Backyard"?
Good question. We all seem to be stuck in front of flickering screens these days, kids and adults alike. Whatever happened to playing outside, spinning around under the trees until you fell down dizzy, hanging off of monkey bars, playing baseball until it got too dark to see the ball? We want to capture the essence and spirit of The Great American Backyard, and bring it back to life... on a stage... with aerial performers, dancers, musicians, spoken word artists, video gurus, and more. It's called physical theatre... and you can play with us!
Physical Theatre? Huh?!
Physical theatre is a genre of theatrical performance that pursues storytelling through primarily physical means, rather than relying on text (like a Shakespeare play). In a basic sense, you "talk" through body language, hand gestures, thought track and many more physical features.
Numbers aren't necessarily our strong suit, but we know that you want to know where your money is going. So, here are the details:
- Every dollar raised will go directly toward the production of this show. That includes choreography, building original play structures that will be used in the show and for community outreach, original music, and hiring outside performers.
- If we don't reach our goal, we will still use every cent for the production. We might have to cut back on a couple of things, but we are performers... the show must go on!
In addition to creating an awesome and entertaining show, we also envision a long-term impact as a result of the collaboration and impetus from this campaign:
- There is no other company in Memphis doing this kind of work. We think it's important and groundbreaking and we want to share it with the community.
- We can use our diverse programming to serve the Memphis community through more shows, educational programs for kids, and support for artists.
- We can also bring in other artists from outside of Memphis to perform and educate.
- If the show is successful, we can apply for non-profit status and apply
for grant money to do even more awesome shows in the future.
Other Ways You Can Help
Monetary donations are always great, but there are lots of other ways to get involved! Check out the list below, or make up your own supportive ideas. Hope to see you on the playground of life!
- Share this on Facebook or Twitter or whatever else you kids are on these days.
- Volunteer for the show!
Keep up with the process on our blog.
P.S. The show will be at the Duncan-Williams Performing Arts Hall at GPAC, February 28 at 7 p.m.