by Olga Mukhina
translated by John Freedman
Presented by Breaking String Theater, in association with the Rude Mechanicals.
- January 28, 29, 30 (Friday - Sunday)
- February 3, 4, 6, 7 (Thursday - Monday)
- February 10, 11, 12, 13, 14 (Thursday - Monday)
- February 16, 17, 18, 19 (Wednesday - Saturday)
All Performances at 8:00pm.
The Off Center
2211 Hidalgo Street, Austin, TX 78702
Sponsors and Collaborators:
Thanks to generous support from the Center for International Theatre Development and its director, Philip Arnoult, Breaking String is thrilled to host playwrights Olga Mukhina and Maksym Kurochkin for the opening weekend of Flying, as part of the Breaking String New Russian Drama Festival.
Breaking String has been proud to collaborate with playwright Olga Mukhina and critic / translator John Freedman in the development of this production.
About Flying (2004):
A group of Russia’s so-called “golden youth,” smart, talented, well-heeled twenty-somethings are heading for disaster. Among them are DJs, VJs, PR agents and on-screen presenters for a hot new youth-oriented Moscow television production company. These people, with hip-sounding names like Snowstorm, Maniac, Snowflake and Orangina, are creating and living the images that will define the future. None wastes much time thinking about why one of their group is repeatedly battered by her husband or why another constantly takes tranquilizers to maintain her cool, collected image. But when an unsullied teenage girl joins their group one day, they are compelled to look beyond the usual limits of their purview. And when Snowstorm is arrested for possession of drugs and Orangina undergoes a religious experience, the insular nature of their world is quickly breached.
About the Playwright
With the end of the Soviet Union in 1991 came tremendous upheaval in Russian society, and the prevailing opinion that no new plays were being written. Enter Olga Mukhina – a mysterious and fiercely independent playwriting student from Moscow, who burst into Russia’s theater community in 1997 with a reading of her first play, “Tanya-Tanya.” Within a year of its premiere at Moscow’s Fomenko Studio, “Tanya-Tanya” was translated into five languages; the Moscow production toured Poland, Germany and Bulgaria; later, American professional practitioners and students took on Mukhina’s work, and FLYING has been staged at the Towson University MFA Program in Theatre, as well as the California Institute of the Arts School of Theater in LA, Californa. As for Mukhina’s work in Russia, her second professional premiere came with her play, “YoU,” which premiered at the Moscow Art Theatre in 2001. Some critics argue that Mukhina’s debut helped kick off a spectacularly productive period in Russian theater, often referred to as the New Drama Movement. Said playwright Mikhail Ugarov, “Olga Mukhina is the Little Red Riding Hood of contemporary Russian drama. She had the nerve to go out there in the woods, not fearing the wolf.”
About the Translator
From the Director:
There is a moment in any production process when a dramatic text becomes a very real world, and expands beyond the horizon of any single collaborator’s vision. Thanks to countless acts of creativity by members of this cast and crew, Mukhina’s modern myth of sex, drugs and celebrity in post-Soviet Russia has aquired its own life and reality right here in Austin, TX. Special recognition is due to our Director of Movement, Adriene Mishler. In addition to leading important parts of our rehearsal process, Adriene's contributions to the show's vision have been steady and invaluable.
I could not be prouder to collaborate with this heroic ensemble, with these pure hearts. Tonight, we invite you to join us in hearing and answering these voices that call to us from Moscow, and in bringing Mukhina's play to life once again. - Graham Schmidt
Jesse Bertron (MANIAC – A Promotor and Base Jumper) most recently delighted the children of New York City as a corpse in John Sheehy's MORGUE THAN YOU KNOW, as part of the 52nd Street Project’s ALL THE PLAYS YOU CAN EAT. His Austin roles include Romeo (ROMEO & JULIET, Shakespeare at Winedale) and Arthur (THE SWORD AND THE STONE, Scottish Rite Children’s Theatre). At St. John’s College, he played Mitch in A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE, and directed and played Lysander/Flute in A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM. He performs locally with the improv troupe Second Hand, and looks forward to upcoming work in SHOWDOWN, with GNAP! Theater.
David J. Boss (VOLODYA - A Police Lieutenant) is honored to work with Breaking String Theater once again. His first production was THE CHERRY ORCHARD playing the role of Yasha. A proud graduate of UT's English department, David trained with the Shakespeare at Winedale program; to which he owes anything and everything. His roles at Winedale include Duke Vincentio (MEASURE FOR MEASURE), Falstaff (ii HENRY V), Northumberland (RICHARD II), and Camillo (THE WINTER’S TALE) to name a few. Recent Austin credits include Antonio (THE TEMPEST), Sir Mellville (MARY STUART) and The Provost (MEASURE FOR MEASURE) with Austin Shakespeare; Biondello and the Tailer in Hidden Room's award-winning THE TAMING OF THE SHREW. David also directed a production of AGAMEMNON for Frontera Fest 2011. He will next be seen in Different Stages' production of Tennessee Williams' NIGHT OF THE IGUANA playing the lead role of Rev. T. Lawrence Shannon. Thanks to Graham for another great experience and this mind-blowing cast of supreme Austin talent. I am indebted to all of you.
Michelle Keffer (ORANGINA – A designer) has been living and working in Austin via Ohio for six years. She is active in the film, theatre and visual arts communities. Michelle has worked with many theatre companies, but Hyde Park Theatre and Pollyanna Theatre Company have made her company members. She can currently be seen in Symphony of the Clouds with Pollyanna/Ballet Austin. Up next: THIS IS OUR YOUTH with Sustainable Theatre Project and A BEHEADING IN SPOKANE with Hyde Park Theatre. Michelle would like to thank this amazing cast and crew for their creativity and support. Thank you HH for being so beautiful and as always, Scooby.
Joey Hood (DJ BLIZZARD) FLYING marks Joey Hood's first production with Breaking String. He is a core member of Hyde Park Theatre Company. He was seen most recently in Paper Chairs' production of Baal. Other recent productions include Bug with Capital T Theatre, THE ATHIEST( Austin Critics Table Best Lead Actor) , THE COLLECTION, and BOMBS IN YOUR MOUTH by Corey Patrick, all for HPT. Also a member of Rude Mechs, Joey has been seen in productions including HAVE YOU EVER BEEN ASSASSINATED? THE WATER PRINCIPLE, THE GLORY OF LIVING (Austin Critics Table Nomination Best Actor) TWILIGHT: LOS ANGELES, 1992 (Austin Critics Table Nomination Best Supporting Actor) THE METAMORPHOSIS (B Iden Payne Nomination Best Actor) BLUR (B Iden Payne Nomination Best Supporting Actor in a Comedy), Fish (B Iden Payne Nomination) and STADIUM DEVILDARE. He just recently completed filming Missy in North Carolina with Commonwealth Studio and last June wrapped 8bit Bros. with Light Buddy Productions here in Austin. Joey is originally from South Mississippi and has been treading Austin stages since 1997. Up next: ZOO STORY with Tom Truss and directed by Courtney Sale.
Adriene Mishler (SNOWFLAKE - A TV star) is a Performer, Teacher and Austinite. She has worked on numerous stages with Salvage Vanguard, Rubber Repertory, Tongue & Groove, The Rude Mechs, Paper Chairs, Refraction Arts, St Idiot Collective, Ariel Dance Theatre and ZACH. Adriene is an actor and producer of site-specific work who loves to blend local theatre, film, music and dance. She is a company member of Ariel Dance Theatre and SVT where she also serves as the Education Coordinator. Adriene delights in the joy of arts education and is dedicated to using theatre and movement as a way to help young people discover creative self-expression and learn collaboration. By day Adriene is a certified Yoga instructor and teaches Theatre Arts and Musical Performance at The Griffin School. Up next, look for her in local feature films AUSTIN HIGH and Sean Gallagher's, HOME.
Steve Ochoa (FIRST ANGEL) was trained in dance and music at West Texas State University for 3 years and spent 2 summers training at the School of American Ballet in New York City. He danced with a few ballet companies in the area and with Ballet Du Nord in northern France before getting his first Broadway show. His Broadway credits include JEROME ROBBINS’ BROADWAY (Original Cast), CATS (Mistoffelees), CAROUSEL (Lincoln Center), TWELFTH NIGHT (Lincoln Center), and SWEET SMELL OF SUCCESS (Original Cast). Off-Broadway: THE WILD PARTY (Manhattan Theater Club). Broadway Tours: FOSSE, CHESS and JRB. Featured with: Dendy Dance and Theater, Feld Ballet, NIXON IN CHINA and with Zvi Gothiener Dance. Film: Object of My Affection, The Crucible. He's played in Austin for 7 years. FLUSH with Ariel Dance Theater was the last production he was in, here in Austin.
Michael Plaster (SECOND ANGEL) came to be connected with Breaking String Theatre by way of martial arts and movement-based performing arts. An esoteric background naturally led him to the role of one of the two Angels in FLYING. Michael derives his movement training and experience from the martial arts of Japanese Jujitsu and Brazilian Capoeira as well various acting movement disciplines. He splits his time between performing in Austin theatre and producing film. Some of his past work in film included work for Terminator 4, 3:10 to Yuma, Doc West, HBO's Habla Series, Spiritual Cinema Circle, Earth Cinema Circle, and Gaiam. He has also edited documentaries for: Metallica, Beyonce, and Radiohead. He is currently working with the City of Austin in producing their upcoming "Bicycle Safety Campaign," a commercial that integrates local business such as Whole Foods with causes that affect the community. Michael’s Austin stage credits include Alice!, written by James Jackson Leach(nominated Austin Theatre Examiner best new Austin playwright); A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Red Balloon (B. Iden Payne); and most recently as a lead role in Frontera Fest’s Allergies. Michael would like to thank AAMP for nourishing the creative process, Gerik Cionsky for the big picture Russian influence, Peyton Wimmer for the functionality, Dad for the unconditional love and support, and his brother Sean for taking the steps to ‘drinking from a volcano’.
Gricelda Silva (BUSHY-TAIL - A waitress) is all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed over her debut performance in Breaking String Theater! She feels incredibly lucky and truly grateful to have had the opportunity to work with this beautiful team. You might have seen Gricelda as "The Boy" in Tongue and Groove Theatre's THE RED BALLOON or you might not have seen her in Trouble Puppet Theatre's FRANKENSTEIN. She would like to thank her parents for their unconditional love + support, her ecosystem who make her world consistently so colorful, and to her Flying Folk-My love for all of you is flying so high, it's soarin'! Dayum Dum-Dum!
Jacob Trussell (DJ SNOWSTORM) is a four year old Austin transplant and recent graduate from St. Edwards University with a Major in Theatre, Acting Emphasis. While at the MMNT he appeared in 10 productions including Parade, Kneeling Down at Noon (with Physical Plant Theatre), Cloud 9, and Peer Gynt (2010 Austin Critics Nom, and B. Iden Payne Winner) On top of that he found time to write a radio drama, direct one short film (finalist in Bloodshots 48 hour filmmaking challenge with Alamo Drafthouse), and become an active company member of DA! Theatre Collective. He also began weaving into the Austin community working with Tex-ARTS, Austin Playhouse, Frontera Fest, Austin Scriptworks, Summer Stock Austin (B. Iden Payne Nom – Bat Boy, Sweeney Todd), Shrewd Productions, and recently Paper Chairs in their production of Baal. He also became the proud recipient of the W.H. “Deacon” Crain Award for Student work. Can he be more excited to help bring this show stateside? He doesn't think so.
Katie Van Winkle (LENOCHKA – A media-planner) most recently appeared in Rubber Repertory's BIOGRAPHY OF PHYSICAL SENSATIONS. Her Austin roles include Agave/Chorus (DIONYSUS IN 69, Rude Mechs), Morse (ONE FLEA SPARE, Best Supporting Actress in a Drama--Austin Critics Table), Juliet and Emilia (SHAKESPEARE'S HUSBANDS & WIVES), and Puck (A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM, Shakespeare at Winedale). At Swarthmore College, she performed Helena in ALL'S WELL THAT ENDS WELL and directed Euripides' BACCHAI, Mrozek's THE EMIGRANTS, McLaughlin's DAYS AND NIGHTS WITHIN, and two collective creations. She co-founded AD HOC, a Philadelphia ensemble theater company. Katie has returned home after two years as Dramaturgy Fellow at Baltimore's CENTERSTAGE. She directed CUSTOMS in the 2011 FronteraFest Short Fringe, and looks forward to upcoming work with the Fusebox Festival and GNAP! at Salvage Vanguard. Much love and gratitude to all.
Ia Ensterä (SET DESIGNER) Originally from Helsinki, Ia is an award-winning scenic and costume designer whose work in the past decade and a half have been on both the stage and the screen. She is the resident Production Designer for Pollyanna Theatre Company, with whom she has been with since its inception over some ten years ago. Some of her favorite productions with Pollyanna include TEMPEST, JUST BEE, and the series PATTERN NATION. Her work has also been seen with numerous other theatre companies, and include PSYCHO BEACH PARTY and WHEN PIGS FLY for Arts On Real, FASTER THAN THE SPEED OF LIGHT at the Salvage Vanguard, THE LOVE SONATAS for HBMG, and some 70+ other various productions. A portion of her cinematic work can be seen in such films as THE TWO BOBS (Dir: Tim McCanlies), MAN FROM ORLANDO (Dir: Craig Elrod), and DOONBY (Dir: Peter Mackenzie). Her commercial projects have included World Wildlife Fund, Maidenform, and H.E.B. She also works consistently as a storyboard artist and illustrator for films, publishing companies, clothing manufacturers, and whomever is in need of illustrations. Ia loves her work, and it shows. She has been nominated for quite a few B. Iden Payne Awards, and has been the lucky recipient of four of them....... and is always on the hunt for the next project.
Angelica Manez (PRODUCTION STAGE MANAGER)received her BA in Theatre Art Administration from St. Edward’s University. Some of her stage management credits include Hamlet (SRT & Black Swan Events), John & Jen (Penfold), Evil Dead the Musical (DrMr), Sweeney Todd and Little Shop of Horror (SSA) The Music Man (Zilker Theatre Productions), Princess & the Pea, Aladdin, Robin Hood, A Christmas Carol, Snow White, and Cinderella (SRCT), Cyrano de Bergerac and Death and The King’s Horseman (MMNT), and Opening Gala of The Long Center. Angelica would like to thank her friends and family especially Ronis and Devyn for always being there. She’d also like to thank her wonderful Flying cast for making this production a true joy.
Adriene Mishler (DIRECTOR OF MOVEMENT) [see above]
Graham Schmidt (DIRECTOR) has worked in Austin Theater for almost a decade as a performer, director, translator and producer. From 2001 to 2004 he performed with ED32 Improv Theatre Troupe. At UT he performed Claudio (MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING) and Claudius (HAMLET) at the Shakespeare at Winedale program, he performed Claudio (MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING) and Claudius (HAMLET), and later directed Anton Chekhov’s UNCLE VANYA. As a graduate student in UT’s Department of Slavic and Eurasian Studies, Graham received a federal grant to pursue research on the early history of Chekhov’s plays at the Moscow Art Theatre (Moscow, Russia). Also at DSES, he contributed to the Cambridge Introduction to Chekhov (Loehlin, 2009). Graham’s recent stage credits for Breaking String include CINZANO by Lyudmila Petrushevskaya (director, translator), Chekhov’s THE SEAGULL (director) and THE CHERRY ORCHARD (director, translator). He is a submissions reader for Generous Company’s WordBRIDGE Playwrighting workshop, a founding member of Breaking String Theater, and its artistic director. Next up for Graham are translations of PHANTON PAINS by Vasily Sigarev and UNCLE VANYA, which will be staged by Breaking String in the summer of 2011. Graham is filled with admiration and gratitude toward this peerless cast and crew, and to all those who helped make this dream into a reality.
Justin Sherburn (COMPOSER, SOUND DESIGNER)is a composer and producer based in Austin, Texas. Hecreates music for theater, television and film and performs withOkkervil River, Glover Gill's Tango Orchestra and the Lovely Sparrows. He invites you to visit his website at justinsherburn.com.
Steven Shirey(LIGHTING DESIGNER) has a MFA in lighting design from the University of South Carolina and was the Technical Director for the Stephen F. Austin State University School of Theatre from 2001 to 2007. Austin design credits include A THOUGHT IN THREE PARTS, NO ONE ELSE IN THE WOODS TONIGHT, and FASTER THAN THE SPEED OF LIGHT.
Jamie Urban (COSTUME DESIGNER)is so thrilled to be working with the beautiful cast and crew of Breaking String’s FLYING. Jamie came to Austin, after finishing her MFA in costume design and production at Boston University, to join her friends in developing and running Sustainable Theatre Project. She was welcomed to Austin with not only this opportunity with Breaking String but also designing for Different Stages’ production of Humble Boy and working on Ballet Austin's Nutcracker. She has worked for companies such as Orlando Reparatory, Chicago Shakespeare Theatre, the Huntington Theatre, Opera Boston and Alpine Theatre Project. She would like to thank her family for their unconditional love, and her friends both old and new for their constant support.