Music composed by Rob Reddy
Libretto by Oliver Lake
Dramaturgy by Meg Araneo
INTERRUPTION! is a cross-genre performance project that meditates on some of the key issues facing the United States today, including voting rights, economic inequality, and racial injustice. Co-created by Rob Reddy, Oliver Lake and Meg Araneo, and featuring a 14-piece ensemble of some of the country’s most well-respected and versatile musicians, INTERRUPTION! was inspired by a July 2015 sermon by the esteemed Rev. Dr. William Barber II. The sermon was given one day before the historic NC-NAACP vs. McCrory hearing in which the NC Supreme Court considered challenges to the state’s oppressive voting laws. The address was a potent call to action. In it he implored all those supporting the cause to follow words found in the Book of Isaiah – “Cry out loud, don’t hold back, interrupt the nation.”
INTERRUPTION! was awarded a 2016 MAP Fund grant, a program primarily supported in part by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation with additional funds from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, MAP is an affiliate program of Creative Capital.
Rob Reddy formed his first ensemble in 1989 featuring legendary bassist Reggie Workman and drummer Pheeroan akLaff. He has worked almost exclusively as a leader, with the exception of brief stints with Workman’s ensemble and Ronald Shannon Jackson’s Decoding Society. He founded the Reddy Music label in 2006, and released “A Hundred Jumping Devils,” which earned him a Chamber Music America commission. His second release, “The Book of the Storm,” featured an all-star 19-piece ensemble performing the hour-long title piece, commissioned by NYSCA and the Jerome Foundation, at the Tribeca Performing Arts Center. Rob has also been awarded commissions and grants from the Rockefeller Foundation, the American Composers Forum, Meet the Composer, Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust, the American Music Center and received two residencies at TPAC. His seventh recording, Bechet: Our Contemporary, was released on September 11, 2015. The recording of the album is the subject of a full-length documentary by filmmaker David Castillo. Rob used Sidney Bechet’s original compositions as a point of departure to create this work, intertwining four Bechet compositions with four of his own. Rob sees this project as an honest and respectful attempt at honoring Bechet’s place in history as a seriously forward-thinking, avant-garde artist of his time, while also putting his work into conversation with our own, present-day sociopolitical landscape. Rob returned to the recording studio in July 2016 to record new music for his Citizen Quintet which features longtime collaborators John Carlson – trumpet, Brandon Ross – guitars, Dom Richards – double bass and Pheeroan akLaff – drums. This recording was released in September 2016. He recently completed new music for his Bechet: Our Contemporary ensemble for which he received a 2015 Chamber Music America New Works Jazz Commission for. This new music premiered Fall 2016 and was recorded live for release on his Reddy Music label. As well as the aforementioned projects, Rob is also undertaking his most ambitious work to date with collaborators Oliver Lake and Meg Araneo: INTERRUPTION! produced by Citizen Arts and Education and Seed Artists. He along with Lake received a 2016 MAP Fund for INTERRUPTION! as well as a BRIC Arts Residency to present the project as a work in progress in April 2017.
Whether composing commissions for Pro Musica Chamber Orchestra and the Brooklyn Philharmonic; creating chamber pieces for Arditti and Flux String Quartets, and San Francisco Contemporary Players; arranging for Bjork, Lou Reed and A Tribe Called Quest; collaborating with poets Amiri Baraka and Ntozake Shange; choreographers Ron Brown and Marlies Yearby; vocalist Mary Redhouse, komungo player Jin Hi Kim; performing with Anna Devere Smith and Patricia Williams; sharing the stage with Mos Def and Me’shell Ndegeocello; or leading his own Organ Quartet, Big Band and ensembles the World Saxophone Quartet and Trio 3; 2014 Doris Duke Award Recipient Oliver Lake views it all as parts of the same whole. Oliver attributes his diverse disciplines to his experience co-founding the St. Louis collective the Black Artists Group (BAG) with poets Ajule Rutlin, and musicians Julius Hemphill and Floyd La Flore. As co-founder of the World Saxophone Quartet, Oliver continues to perform with notable choreographers, poets and jazz musicians all over the U.S., Europe, Japan, the Middle East, Africa, and Australia. In 1998 Oliver founded Passin’ Thru, a non-profit dedicated to the appreciation of jazz, new music, and other disciplines which commissions new works and performances by emerging artists and recently issued its 18th recording. A Guggenheim Fellow, Oliver is frequently commissioned for Meet the Composer. Other commissions include Library of Congress, Rockefeller Foundation ASCAP, Composers Forum, the McKim Foundation, Mary Flagler Cary Trust and the Lila Wallace Arts Partners Program, Wheeling Symphony, New York New Music Ensemble, and Pulse Percussion Ensemble of New York. In 2006 Oliver received the Jazz Impact award from the Central Brooklyn Jazz Consortium and the Mellon Jazz Living Legacy Award at the Kennedy Center. Oliver is also a poet, painter and performance artist, publishing two books of poetry, exhibiting his artwork internationally, touring the country with his one-man show, “Matador of 1st and 1st,” and creating the “Jazz House” for the City of Asylum in Pittsburgh, PA.
Meg Araneo is a Brooklyn-based theatre maker and scholar whose work focuses on the intersection of performance and the history of neurological impairments. Having completed her BA in political science from Johns Hopkins University, Meg went on to earn an MFA in Acting from Carnegie Mellon University and the Moscow Art Theatre School. She spent several years working in the experimental theatre scene in New York City. She collaborated as a performer and dramaturg on several projects with Colombian director Javier Gutierrez. Together, along with a team of artists from Germany, Puerto Rico, Chile, and the United States, they devised physical theatre pieces based on such iconic texts as Shakespeare’s Titus Andronicus, Strindberg’sThe Pelican, Kirosowa’s Rashomon, and Büchner’s Woyzeck. With the desire to combine her practical work in the theatre with the scholarly study of performance and culture, she returned to academia to pursue her Ph.D. at the Graduate Center CUNY. She has worked closely with the Martin E. Segal Theatre Center, curating an event on the work of Bruno Schultz and editing several of the Center’s publications. Meg served as the Managing Editor of the journal Slavic and East European Performance. She has written on contemporary Eastern European theatre as well as published several performance and book reviews. Meg has presented papers at leading academic conferences, including those of the Association for Theatre in Higher Education, the American Society of Theatre Research, and, most recently, the International Federation for Theatre Research. Her current research project examines New York variety performances of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries for the ways in which they represented various neurological conditions, such as hysteria and epilepsy. She is co-authoring with Helen Richardson a global performance textbook for Routledge due out in winter 2018. Currently, Meg is the Director of the MA Theater History and Criticism program at Brooklyn College, CUNY. She is also an Adjunct Instructor of Drama at New York University, Tisch School of the Arts. She is the co-founder and co-artistic director with Rob Reddy of Citizen Arts and Education, a non-for-profit organization committed to generating cultural dialogue through the creation of original artistic work across disciplines.
The intimate, flexible studio space within BRIC House is dedicated to emerging and mid-career artists, with an audience capacity of 50-75 for rehearsals and performances in a workshop setting.
For ticketed events, the Box Office opens one hour prior to show time. Advanced tickets can be purchased online or by phone at 866-811-4111.