Philly’s Most Unusual New Band Creates Celtic-Rock Opera
Sylvia Platypus Re-Imagines 19th Century French Novella for Fringe 2011
Contact : Ruchama Bilenky
Shows take place at the following times:
Monday September 5: 8pm
Monday September 12: 7pm and 9pm
Thursday September 15: 8pm and 10pm
Tickets are $10 and can be purchased HERE or at the door.
“Le Mirage/Dead City Philly is based on Georges Rodenbach’s Bruges-la-Morte,” says Ruchama Bilenky founder of DysFUNctionalTheater and bass player for the band Sylvia Platypus. “But we’ve re-framed the tale as a love triangle between the man, the woman and the ghost.”
Bruges-la-Morte (and Le Mirage, Rodenbach’s theatrical adaptation of the same book) is the story of a young widower’s obsession with a woman who resembles his dead wife. In Bruges-la-Morte, Bruges, Belgium is the “dead” city- and it’s almost a character itself, casting deep shadows and choking the life from its inhabitants.
“Our version is a multimedia production incorporating elements of theater, dance, video and live music,” says Bilenky. “To celebrate DysFUNctional Theater’s 10th anniversary we wanted to do something different.”
Ruchama Bilenky founded DysFUNctional Theater when she was just 18 years old with the mission of bringing challenging and obscure female-oriented works to the Philadelphia stage. Previously, DysFUNctional Theater has presented Sam Shepard and Patti Smith’s Cowboy Mouth, Tom Eyen’s The White Whore and the Bit Player, Caridad Svich’s Alchemy of Desire/ Dead Man’s Blues, Maria Irene Fornes’ Fefu and Her Friends and Athol Fugard’s Statements.
Sylvia Platypus vocalist Janet Bressler has collaborated with Grammy-winner Scot Sax for some of the songs in Le Mirage/Dead City Philly. Bressler’s work with other co-songwriters will also be featured. The band’s unique and haunting sound serves the narrative as a rock’n’roll Greek chorus.
In addition to Bressler and Bilenky (who portrays the woman), Sylvia Platypus includes Bill Barone, lead guitar, Michael Southerton on rhythm guitar (and in the male role) and Charlie Rutan on bagpipes, English horn and tin whistles. Rutan, who has piped for pop stars and presidents, will provide incidental music throughout the show.Artist, designer, and dancer Ginger Bedlam will play the ghost.