Twenty- and thirtysomethings confront the confusion of technology with identity in “My Technology,” a new play of ensemble creation conceived and directed by Deena Levy. The evening is a composite of ten original one-person pieces interlaced with video projections and stills, choreography and original music.
“My Technology” integrates stories and original music with some hardcore technological surprises to illustrate the point that today, technology has broken down our ability to communicate as we used to. Everything is technology but something is lost and that, simply put, is the human condition. The longing to get back to who we are as human beings is told through ten very personal, poignant, and sexy one-person pieces on such themes as how we fall in love with stuff that’s not human, virtual passion, distraction, cyberbullying, digital porn, self-branding vs. identity, suicide and rebooting your life. Between the monologues are sandwiched interludes of movement and visuals that offer creative disruption and beauty. The set is ten chairs representing each individual piece, accompanied by ten cell phones. The piece was developed through a process of ensemble creation, based on monologues that were written by the ten cast members over a period of months.
Deena Levy (concept, director), originally from Toronto, moved to New York City in 1979. She has worn many hats as producer, director, writer, and actor in collaboration with such innovative artists as Anne Bogart, Richard LaGravenese, Nicky Silver, and Peter Napolitano. She formed Open Stage Theatre Company with her partner, Gerald Brody, in1988. In 1993, she founded the Deena Levy Theatre Studio, which was the subject of a documentary, “Actors Transformation: the Work of Deena Levy and her Students” by Canadian videographer Genevieve Appleton. It screened at film festivals and aired on BRAVO Canada for three years.
As a member of the Orange Theatre Company, she co-produced and performed in the Off-Broadway revival of “In the Boom Boom Room,” which David Rabe re-wrote for the company. She directed “The Secret Sits in the Middle” by Lisa Maria Radano Off-Broadway at Theater Off Park. Over the last 20 years the Deena Levy Theater Studio has produced four themed original plays that celebrate the actor as writer/performer. These include “Child’s Play,” “Small Circle of Friends” (Kim Dickens/Mark Valley), “You/Actor” (documentary airing on Bravo and in film festivals) and “New York/Solo” (a highly acclaimed ode to 9/11).
Levy has taught in Toronto, New Orleans, Chicago, and LA and was made an honorary fellow at York University, Toronto. She received the Founders Day Award for outstanding academic achievement from New York University with a B.F.A in theatre and is in the Gold Key Honor Society at Emerson College, Boston. Her work has been featured in many published interviews and essays.
The actors are Graceann Dorse, Colleen Fleischmann, Jenn Gellman, Casey Hildebrand, Ellie Lee, Miranda McCauley, Thomas Miller, Danny Patrick, Brendt Reil and Jeanette Villafane.
Interactive media designer is Andre Zachary. Lighting designer is Duane Pagano. Sound Designer is Nancy Magarill. Original music is by Nancy Magarill and Ryan Montbleau.
ABOUT THE CAST
Brendt Reil has appeared in “Ghostlight” at the Signature Theater and as Gabey in “On the Town” at the Lucielle Lortel Theater. His national/International Tours include “42nd Street” and “Annie Get Your Gun.” He has appeared at numerous regional theaters.
Ellie Lee has been a news host for Anime News Network and MTV K, and is currently the pop culture correspondent for VH1’s “Big Morning Buzz Live,” hosted by Nick Lachey.
Graceann Dorse is an actor and writer. Her sitcom pilot, “Unidentified,” was an official selection at the 2014 New York Television Festival.
Colleen Fleischmann has appeared OOB the Kraine Theatre, Tada! And Upright Citizens Brigade. She has also appeared in TV’s “Eye of Horus” and “Twentysomething” and in a number of short independent films and web series.
Jennifer Gellman appeared in the short Film “Reading is for the Mental,” which debuted at Cannes Film Festival short corner. She has appeared onstage in “Little Shop of Horrors,” “Guys and Dolls,” “Orpheus Descending,” “Beyond Therapy” and “The MotherFcker with the Hat.” Her standup has been seen at Caroline’s, Gotham and Broadway Comedy Clubs.
Miranda McCauley is an actor, writer, producer, casting director and creator of weird art installations. She acted the leads in in two upcoming feature films, “Lovers Game” and “Mad About the Boy,” and starred in the two-time award winning web series “Brooklyn is in Love.”
Tom Miller has appeared in a several short and independent feature films. He produces video content for the website YourTango.com and was a Webby Honoree for a video short he wrote.
Jeanette Villafane has appeared in “The Lighter Side of Dark” at the Robert Moses Theater, “Intense” at TADA and several Indie films. She is a member of the Full Circle Ensemble as a writer/poet/actor. Her screenplay, “In 2 Me U See,” won the Gold Prize in the 2013 World Series of Screenwriting Awards.
Casey Hildebrand has appeared OOB in “Loose Ends” and “Thieves” and in short films, reality TV and commercials.
Danny Patrick came to acting via comedy and has appeared in OOB, film, theater and standup.
Deena Levy will present “My Technology” from March 24 to 29, 2015 at 3LD Art & Technology Center, 80 Greenwich Street, Manhattan. Performances are Tuesday trough Friday at 8:00 PM, Saturday at 2:00 PM and 8:00 PM, Sunday at 2:00 PM. Tickets are $20. The box office number is 800-838-3006. the show’s website is http://mytechnology.bpt.me. The running time is 1:45 with intermission.