Liz Janes with UGPA

Liz Janes with Urban Garden Performing Arts

Sunday June 26th 7pm

Presented by Musicoal at Burning Coal Theatre

Featured Artists: Liz Janes – singer/songwriter, Bruce Benedict – singer/songwriter, John Miller – percussionist, Pj Maske – performing artist, Heather Cannaday – dancer/choreographer

The venue is a cool, dark, intimate theatre space.  The stage space is sparse but well lit.  The performance is built around the music.  Similar to a typical, contemporary music show one artist opens with a shorter set (in this case Bruce Benedict).  There is a break.  Then the ‘head-lining act,’ Liz Janes, plays a longer set.  This show, however, is different.  Two performers Heather Cannaday and Pj Maske, move simply and naturally in and out of the lit space, during some songs executing simple household tasks; typing on a typewriter, sewing on a sewing machine, folding sheets.  During other songs performing sparsely choreographed dance, or sitting and watching along with the audience.  The household tasks make sound that interacts with the music.  They are performed on/with carefully chosen objects that, along with the instruments, and a few pieces of sound equipment make up the visual element of the show; an ancient Underwood Typewriter, an antique electric Singer sewing machine.  These are both obviously mic-ed as instruments in their own right.  Like the sound-producing tasks and objects, the choreographed dance is both crafted and performed in dialogue with the music.  The musician and their song is primary in this performance.  The experience is intimate and contemplative.  Benedict and Janes interact minimally with the audience, maintaining the ease that classic singer/songwriter audience dialogue brings, but making the whole performance feel a bit more, as Janes put it at the top of her set, “like a one act play.”

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(Photos (c) Carol Dukes, 2011)

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