Artists & Projects Directory
Marc Bamuthi Joseph/The Living Word Project
"I left the theater wondering if I had ever seen a production that so deeply honored people's stories, interactions, hopes, obstacles, grief and potential" - Berkeley Graduate
red, black & GREEN: a blues (rbGb) is visceral and moving hybrid performance work that brings the stories and voices of Black America into the center of a timely conversation about race, class, culture and the environment.
With passion and energy, intelligence and sweat Marc Bamuthi Joseph and his fellow cast members lead the audience through four seasons in four cities -- summer in Chicago, fall in Houston, winter in Harlem, and spring in Oakland. Within these literal spaces, the narrative exists in more poetic and ephemeral space, toggling between the realities of shotgun houses, subway cars, park benches, and father son conversations, to more figurative spaces of collective memory, hallucination, dream and lament.
In honest performances ranging from deeply sad to hilariously funny, the work expands beyond the stage to embrace the stories of individuals in communities around the country. New and inspiring definitions of sustainability emerge from tales of survival and the complex beauty and struggle of human interdependence. Beyond hoping that audience members leave the theater to discuss environmental themes over dinner, rbGb aims to inspire new definitions of sustainability that lead to compassionate and humane action in the real world.
A deeply collaborative creation directed by Michael John Garcés, rbGb combines dance, poetry, music, and visual art in a new mode of hybrid performance. The interactive stage set/installation designed by contemporary art star Theaster Gates is a full character in the piece, and vivid films by Eli Jacobs Fantauzzi bring the outside world into the theater. Additional collaborators include artists from Joseph's previous highly acclaimed work the breaks -- choreographer Stacey Printz; musician and composer Tommy Shepherd; lighting designer James Clotfelter; and media designer David Szlasa. Joseph is joined onstage in the performance by Shepherd, dancer/actor Traci Tolmaire, and vocalist Yaw. Also joining the team is costume designer Mai-Lei Pecorari.
Run time: 90 minutes
- WBF Press Kit 2.13
- rdGB Press Reviews 1.2013
- Word Becomes Flesh Press Reviews 1.2013
- Full Press Kit 12.12
- Object Context & Voice by Bridget Cooks
- A Rite to Heal by Shannon Jackson
- Arts Sarasota Herald Tribune Review 1.25.13
- New York Times rbGb Preview
- The Root Interview
- UTNE Reader: Less About Green, More About LIfe
- 2011 Alpert Award in the Arts
- Theaster Gates' website
- LIFE is LIVING website
- Marc Bamuthi Joseph on Great Day Houston
- Marc Bamuthi Joseph on KQED First Person
- Houston Chronicle: Artist tackles environmental injustice
- San Francisco Chronicle Review
- Youth Speaks website