SHE MUST DIE is a classical-contemporary cabaret with 3M overhead projector.
Soprano Brittany Loewen’s “controlled and powerful voice”* propels feeling through sound; while the folk-pop duo Laura Dern steadies the brimming emotion with songs about disappearing and forever. Ary Marvray creates dreamy scenes with analog overhead projector. And a small ensemble of piano and cello reinforce the sonic terrain.
The arias, from the operas La Gioconda, Madama Butterfly, Otello, and Suor Angelica, lay the foundation for SHE MUST DIE, as at the end of each aria, the soprano dies, and dies again, over and over. The band Laura Dern, comprised of guitarist-vocalist Cydney Asher and vocalist Dylan Bandy, compliment Loewen’s powerful sound with a soft, vulnerable intertwining of voices and unsettling harmonies. SHE MUST DIE attempts to reconcile each death—each tawdry demise—with something overwhelming: an immersive internal landscape.
SHE MUST DIE was developed in reaction to the misogyny inherent in the plots of many operas. This production re-envisions the operatic death as a jumping-off point for a larger discussion about gendered experience. The work comments on body politics, romantic iconography, and moral necessity.
Director: Dylan Bandy Producer: Brittany Loewen Photos: Sara Benton
*Perform Ink Chicago
Before I studied filmmaking, I made my first short for under $200. We shot on DSLR.
BEFORE 30 is about someone who doesn't know what the hell she's doing with her life. But like, she just bought a new couch. [NSFW]
Nooks and crannies of the Hebbel am Ufer Theater are transformed from unassuming utility spaces into intimate lounge areas, each with a phone. Singers are trapped in enclosed spaces, behind windows, in closets, awaiting the rush of calls between main-stage performances.
We are the desperate attempt to pull focus; we are the small symbiotic creature on the back of the institution. Singers and audience are both visible to passersby, but not to each other. It is voyeurism and spectacle. It is phone sex with live songs. This piece played and won the HAU 100º Festival in 2011.
Boheme In A Bar is the opera La Boheme staged in a bar, with concept and direction by Dylan Bandy and performances by Ryan Center & Chicago Opera Theater Young Artist singers.
The immersive staging allows for direct contact with the singers and 360º of sound, making the Romantic opera more of a chamber work. Immediate is the lush sonic atmosphere of the swirling marketplace, then the sparse, dank apartment of two broke artists. Sung in the original Italian, with clowns for interpretation, this production was praised for its emotional truth, approachability, and very fine singing.
April 2014 at Act One Pub | Mayne Stage in Chicago, IL
Dir. Dylan Bandy Music Dir. by Sarah Jenks Production /kor/ Productions
STRANGERS IN A SONG | MICA MOCA
STRANGERS IN A SONG was first created as a part of the culture experiment Mica Moca.
It premiered September 3rd, 2011 in Berlin and then toured internationally to Norwich, Stettin, and Zürich. This work is a live audio installation that explores intimacy and voyeurism in the technological age.
At a vault-making factory in the Wedding district of Berlin, a gallery of objects invites participation: phone numbers and a list of songs. Singers wait in factory rooms not visible to the caller. The phone rings: "I'd like the number two." A concert by telephone.