Home Entertainment production The first production of Constellation places the audience and actors around a campfire

The first production of Constellation places the audience and actors around a campfire


Constellation’s first performance literally ignites the audience.

Repeat then dive. That’s what Constellation Stage and Screen did as they prepared for the first (and immersive) performance of the new company. “The Grown-Ups” will be outside under real constellations.

A small audience will gather around a campfire, from September 14 to October 1, and immerse themselves in the talent of the cast. That’s because the actors, playing the camp counselors, will be sitting right there among the ticket buyers.

Although there is no stage, “this is NOT a show with audience interaction,” said Chad Rabinovitz, artistic director of new works for the company.

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The play, by Skylar Fox and Simon Henriques, is set in a summer camp. The campers sleep in their tents while the monitors relax by the light of the fire. As they observe what seems to them an increasingly dark world, they discuss how best to mold the future sleeping rulers. Henriques stars as Lukas and Fox directs.

As a child, Henriques attended an overnight camp much like that of “The Grown-Ups”.

“I was 10. It wasn’t for me. I cried a lot, got sick, didn’t make any friends and got lost in the woods briefly at night,” a- he declared. “I spent my next summers doing theater, which was much more my speed.”

The camp staff tell the story in

Fictional turbulence occurs outside the playcamp (you’ll have to be there to find out), and the monitors check their phones for the first time since breakfast. We begin to learn what is going on there beyond the tent pegs and the glassy lake.

“You sit around the campfire with (counselors) as if you were another counselor. So (immersion) is about the closeness you have with the actors, the action and the environment of the play,” explained Henriques.

“The Grown-ups,” which also happens to be Constellation’s first page-to-stage-to-screen project, premiered a year ago in Brooklyn, New York, in Henriques’ backyard.

“It extended its sold-out tour three times,” he said, “and Time Out New York gave it four stars and called it ‘the coolest new piece you probably can’t. see”. They also included it on their list of the top 10 shows of 2021.”

The writers realized that to create a play where people sit and talk, they had to create compelling dialogue. “Aside from the unique theatrics and immersion,” Henriques said, “I think it’s just a good story. And it’s funny!

Roasting marshmallows and keeping the campfire burning will be part of

As for the immersion, the senses of the public will provide the scenography, as they will soak up the atmosphere, of a real old summer camp. They will feel the heat of the fire as they smell the roasted marshmallows, hear the cicadas and katydids, and gaze at the constellations.

The inescapable feeling of coming of age against one’s will is largely the subject of the play. “Perhaps the immersive aspect of the show is even more appropriate than we thought.”

And since the audience will be seated with the actors, they may notice tiny sideways glances and high-pitched breaths that they normally wouldn’t.

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“That summer camp feeling won’t just start when the audience sits down – in a way, the whole journey to the venue will be part of the experience.”

The team devised ways to incorporate some of the camp’s existing features into the staging of the play. The open spaces of the Hundredth Hill site help.

“The Grown-Ups” allows us to discover the importance of how people talk about their days or how activities are assigned in reinforced ways by generations of campers and counselors. for you, while adapting to change?

“The Grown-Ups” looks at tradition and change and what drives people to want to change, especially when nothing has prepared them for it. The playwrights are hoping for a bit of a scare, after all they imagine the play as one big scary story told around a campfire. “That said, no one is going to jump in and surprise you.”

If you are going to

WHAT: Constellation Stage & Screen’s first production, “The Grown-Ups: An Immersive Outdoor Experience”

WHEN: September 14 to October 1. Check the website for more details: https://seeconstellation.org

WHERE: The Hundredth Hill Artist Retreat and Residence8275 N. Fish Road

TICKETS: Availability is extremely limited and there is a waiting list. Tickets may be available on the Constellation website and at the box office, 812-336-9300. Bring your own refreshments; camping chairs are provided. Masking is optional.