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Recent Upstream News
Riverfont Times - Best of 2010
For the second year in a row, Upstream Theater has been recognized in the "Best of St. Louis" edition of the Riverfront Times.
Best Theater Company - 2010
It all comes down to what you want from your theater. If you're seeking escapism, a good time, a few laughs or an easy lump in the throat — and there's nothing wrong with any of those nice things — then you might want to look elsewhere (and there are lots of options). But if you're open to having your mind stretched and your complacency challenged, if you welcome storytelling that is a little less conventional, then Upstream Theater should have a valued place in your theatergoing life. Upstream stages plays that enlarge our comprehension without necessarily providing answers. We don't want to condemn Upstream with a lofty term like "artistic," but the company's productions are usually beautiful to view. Even if you don't immediately like a particular show, there's a good chance it'll linger in your mind and haunt your heart. Not always the easiest theater, but usually the most edifying in town.
Best Stage Production - 2010
Quick: When's the last time you saw a really good Polish morality play? As adapted and directed by Upstream Theater artistic director Philip Boehm, Helver's Night, a parable about two misfits trying to exist in an oppressive totalitarian society, delivered a jolt of harrowing theater enacted by two brilliantly modulated performers. Christopher Harris was a simpleton who was desperate to belong to the pack; Linda Kennedy brought poignancy to the gentle caretaker who could not prevent the destruction of her charge. Those of us who don't keep up to speed on the Polish arts scene had never heard of Helver's Night. Attending this totally unknown play without any preconceptions made the production a veritable body blow. For the duration of the evening, time seemed to stand still. The breathless experience was shattering yet exhilarating. Truly, a night to remember.
Heraclitus might have said:
No woman ever steps in the same river twice, for it's not the same river and she's not the same woman. One of the floaters on the August “Upstream with a Paddle” float trip described her experience on the overnight river journey as “life-changing.”
Nine intrepid nature-and-theater fans purchased a seat for the trip at the recent Bastille Day fundraiser. We paddled fifteen miles on the Huzzah, an Ozark river 1.5 hours from St. Louis. Blue and green herons coaxed the floaters downstream through amazing landscapes. Undaunted by primitive conditions, artistic director Boehm prepared delectable meals ranging from tuna steaks to breakfast crepes. Around the fire and under the full moon, Lydia Ruffin reprised her song from the cabaret and soon everyone was joining in with music and stories of their own.
A second trip is planned and seats will be auctioned at the July 14, 2011 fundraiser. Save the date! – Bonnie Taylor
Artistic Director Philip Boehm featured in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Click here to view His theatrical big picture takes in the world by Judith Newmark of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Access to Artistic Excellence
Upstream Theater is pleased to announce that it has been selected by the National Endowment for the Arts to receive an Access to Artistic Excellence grant award to develop a new play The Tragedy of the Death of Atahualpa, adapted from the Quechua oral tradition.
USITT Design Panel
Upstream Theater is proud to be invited to participate in the 50th anniversary USITT 2010 Annual Conference & Stage Expo in Kansas City.
Director of Program Initiatives
Upstream Theater is delighted to welcome Bonnie Taylor to our staff, as the new Director of Program Initiatives. More on Ms. Taylor here.
BASTILLE DAY CABER(N)ET
Please mark your calendars now for this amazing fun(d)raising event! (Le 14 Juillet, naturellement!) More to follow soon…