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Wooster Group's Early Shaker Spirituals, With Frances McDormand and More, Returns This Winter

The legendary theater troupe will also present a new work titled The B-Side.

Elizabeth LeCompte, Suzzy Roche, Frances McDormand, and Cynthia Hedstrom in Early Shaker Spirituals.
(© Hideto Maezawa)

The Wooster Group will present the premiere of its latest work, The B-Side: "Negro Folklore From Texas State Prisons", as well as a return engagement of its acclaimed 2014 piece Early Shaker Spirituals this fall at the company's home, The Performing Garage.

Both works are subtitled "A Record Album Interpretation," and explore two very different strains of American culture. The B-Side is inspired by performer Eric Berryman's interest in the 1964 Bruce Jackson LP Negro Folklore From Texas State Prisons. Berryman plays the album and transmits the material live by channeling, via an in-ear receiver, the voices of the men on the record. Accompanying him are Jasper McGruder and Philip Moore. It runs October 25-November 12.

Early Shaker Spirituals is based on a 1976 album of Shaker songs recorded by the sisters of the Shaker community in Sabbathday Lake, Maine. The piece features Cynthia Hedstrom, Elizabeth LeCompte, Frances McDormand, Bebe Miller, and Suzzy Roche, all of whom channel the voices of the Shaker singers from the album via in-ear receivers to give a new live rendering to the songs. Matthew Brown, Modesto Jimenez, Bobby McElver, and Andrew Schneider serve as dancers, with Jamie Poskin as interlocutor reading from the album's liner notes. The engagement will take place December 7-17.

The creative team includes Enver Chakartash (costumes), Gareth Hobbs (sound), Bona Lee (production manager), Erin Mullin (stage manager), Ryan Seelig (lighting), Eric Sluyter (sound), Jennifer Tipton (lighting), and Robert Wuss (video for The B-Side).

For tickets to The B-Side, click here.

For tickets to Early Shaker Spirituals, click here.