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RHINBECCA, NY


March 4 - 19, 2016 at The Brick

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RHINBECCA, NY


March 4 - 19, 2016 at The Brick

ENSEMBLE

created and performed by Theater Reconstruction Ensemble

conceived and directed by John Kurzynowski

Performers: Harlan Alford, Nathaniel Basch-Gould, Sam Corbin, Emily Marro, Anastasia Olowin, Jon Riddleberger, Lauren Swan-Potras

Additional Text: Alex Kveton

Producing Director: Reed Whitney

Scenic Design: Jonathan Cottle | Sound Design: Alex Hawthorn | Lighting Design: Marika Kent | Costume Design: Joseph Wolfslau | Stage Manager: Nic Adams | Production Manager: Markus Paminger | Asst. Lighting Designer / Master Electrician: Brian Abbott | Co-Sound Designer / Sound Op: Adrianna Brannon | Assistant Director: Emma Kimball | Press Rep: David Gibbs / DARR Publicity


SYNOPSIS

At the intersection of suspense and the absurd lies Rhinbecca, NY. Population: 367. Not including the mayor. Which makes 368. You may have noticed the mayor’s house. Up on the hill. You can always point to it. You can see it from miles away. The mayor's head is a bald dome with a half skirt of white hair. He's blue collar in the community, top of the food chain. And he is missing. 

Enter Don. Don is a stranger from out. He may or may not remember who he is or how he's arrived in town. And his sudden appearance may or may not be directly related to the mystery of the missing mayor. But his absurdly suspenseful quest to uncover the truth hidden beneath this theatrical facade, loosely inspired by the greatest works of playwright Eugene Ionesco and filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock, may very well leave us all completely transformed.


photos by Suzi Sadler


press

The windmills of logic turned on all levels, from juxtaposing styles of speech, to varying tempo and patterns of movement, to upending notions of linear narrative. Director John Kurynowski, who also conceived the show, wrote in his program note that he wanted ‘to create a show that could walk the very fine line between suspense and the absurd.’ In a you-have-to-see-it-to-believe-it kind of way, ‘Rhinbecca, NY’ is a magnificent tightrope walk between the two.
— Culturebot
 
‘Rhinbecca, NY’ is a play deeply concerned with terror and fear, and how human beings manifest terror and fear. The world Don stumbles into is full of existential dread. The more the people smile, the worse it gets. Every dance break (there are a few) is fun but also pulsates with some sort of primal violence. Or maybe it doesn’t. Maybe it’s all in our heads. ‘Rhinbecca, NY’ is too shrewd to make that decision for us.
— New York Theatre Review
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YOU ON THE MOORS NOW


February 13 - 28, 2015 at HERE

YOU ON THE MOORS NOW


February 13 - 28, 2015 at HERE

ENSEMBLE

created and performed by Theater Reconstruction Ensemble

written by Jaclyn Backhaus

conceived and directed by John Kurzynowski

Performers: Harlan Alford, Michael Barringer, Nathaniel Basch-Gould, Sam Corbin, Eben Hoffer, Lena Hudson, Emily Marro, Preston Martin, Anastasia Olowin, Jon Riddleberger, Kelly Rogers, Claire Rothrock, Patrick Scheid, Lauren Swan-Potras

Producing Director: Reed Whitney

Sound Design: Alex Hawthorn | Lighting Design: Marika Kent | Scenic and Costume Design: Joseph Wolfslau | Stage Manager: Kristy Bodall | Technical Director: Markus Paminger | Asst. Sound Designer: Adrianna Brannon | Asst. Lighting Designer: Brian Abbott | Press Rep: David Gibbs / DARR Publicity


SYNOPSIS

You On The Moors Now is a sprawling theatrical examination of four well-known literary heroines of the 19th-century and their shocking rejection of the men who so ardently loved them. What results is a confluence of love, anger, grief, haunting, bloody battles and single tears shed by an ensemble of actors struggling to reconcile the romantic confines of the past with their own contemporary ideas of courtship. You On The Moors Now takes everything you’ve ever learned about love, gleaned from the pages of Pride and Prejudice, Jane Eyre, Wuthering Heights, and Little Women, and puts it somewhere in the tall grasses, hidden from view, where only the truly brave will ever traverse to earn it.


photos by Suzi Sadler


press

‘You On The Moors Now’ uses canonical characters to provide a cutting commentary on the kind of gender norms that bloggers and personal essays writers are tackling every day.
— Flavorwire
 
‘You On The Moors Now’ is a wild send up of classic literature and an examination of women’s rights in a time that was sorely lacking in that category. Theater Reconstruction Ensemble develops their work over long periods of time and ‘You On The Moors Now’ is the culmination of two years of development. Their efforts have paid off with a hit.
— New York Theatre Review
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SALESMEN: A MEDITATION ON MASCULINITY AND THE AMERICAN REAL!


October 24 - November 9, 2013 at HERE

SALESMEN: A MEDITATION ON MASCULINITY AND THE AMERICAN REAL!


October 24 - November 9, 2013 at HERE

ENSEMBLE

created and performed by Theater Reconstruction Ensemble

conceived and directed by John Kurzynowski

Performers: Michael Barringer, Hunter Canning, Jonathan Gordon, Eben Hoffer, Patrick Scheid, Nick Smerkanich, Hugh Trimble, Merlin Whitehawk

Producing Director: Reed Whitney

Associate Director: Lauren Swan-Potras | Sound Design: Eben Hoffer and John Kurzynowski | Lighting Design: Jonathan Cottle | Production Design: Aaron Ethan Green | Stage Manager: Sarah Lurie | Press Rep: Off Off PR / Paul Siebold


SYNOPSIS

In the heyday of the American drama, the forefathers of realism were seeking to create a new form of story-telling in which characters could be plucked from the everyday humdrum of reality, and the actors portraying could pass for your neighbor or your brother or the man seated next to you. Tired of the melodramatic flare, these artists were working together to rebel against the established norm by experimenting with the unknown and reveling in the process of development and creation.

More than half a century later, Theater Reconstruction Ensemble has assembled a group of eight men struggling to create their own process of theatrical story-telling, following in their forefathers' footsteps - examining their greatest works and challenging their most legendary of methods. By looking to the past, we have created a new piece of theater - a patchwork of style, drama, realism and what lies beyond - that pushes the boundaries of our now-established norms of playwriting and theater-making. We are continuing their experiment by exploring our own process and venturing ourselves into the great unknown.


photos by Suzi Sadler


press

John Kurzynowski’s ‘Salesmen’ is a modern experimental form simultaneously honoring its forefathers and breaking their rules at every turn. What results is a fresh, bold production from a voice that clearly has much to say. The young Theater Reconstruction Ensemble is one to watch.
— Show Business Weekly
 
‘Salesmen’ is an experimental wonderland. The performers are fearless in their explorations of the theatre space and even time itself.
— Theatre Is Easy
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SET IN THE LIVING ROOM OF A SMALL TOWN AMERICAN PLAY


February 21 - March 9, 2013 at Walkerspace

SET IN THE LIVING ROOM OF A SMALL TOWN AMERICAN PLAY


February 21 - March 9, 2013 at Walkerspace

ENSEMBLE

created and performed by Theater Reconstruction Ensemble

written by Jaclyn Backhaus

conceived and directed by John Kurzynowski

Performers: Harlan Alford, Jaclyn Backhaus, Michael Barringer, Andrew Butler, Nick Fesette, Nick Lehane, Emily Marro, Sydney Matthews, Anastasia Olowin, Patrick Scheid, Tina Shepard, Lauren Swan-Potras

Producing Director: Reed Whitney

Scenic and Lighting Design: Jonathan Cottle | Sound Design: Kate Marvin | Stage Manager: Nick Smerkanich | Asst. Stage Manager: Marlena Holman | Production Intern: Sam Corbin | Press Rep: Off Off PR / Paul Siebold


SYNOPSIS

In this world premiere nod to the heyday of the American drama, the Lorimer family has gathered to welcome home their former golden boy after tragedy has forced him to retreat to the living room of his youth. A revolving door of newly explored stock characters reveal their inner demons while struggling to achieve the American dream - life, liberty and the pursuit of authenticity.

Theater Reconstruction Ensemble's epic dissection of the American REAL attempts to rebuild the most iconic and praised theatrical style of the past century while simultaneously questioning its core components. Can we ever truly create something REAL onstage? Or is it only in the struggle to do so that we stumble across that ever-elusive TRUTH?


photos by Hunter Canning


press

Theater Reconstruction Ensemble’s challenging but ultimately rewarding production of ‘Set in the Living Room of a Small Town American Play’ does more than deconstruct the style of the great American dramas from the 20th century. [Backhaus and Kurzynowski] essentially present a staged rehearsal, which turns out to be an apt forum for meditation on the techniques through which plays spring to life. The production’s organic hunt for an emotional authenticity that it doesn’t always find is exhilarating.
— Backstage
 
The dialogue is so impeccably written in the speech of that era it could have just as easily been taken directly from the pages of a Tennessee Williams or Arthur Miller classic. Kurzynowski manages to weave the actors throughout the stage as if the whole piece were a dream ballet. All together Theater Reconstruction Ensemble’s piece is a surprising, fascinating, and engaging work of art that causes us to reflect on post-war America and ask if we’ve really changed that much since.
— Theatre Is Easy
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THE THREE SEAGULLS, OR MASHAMASHAMASHA!


March 1 - 10, 2012 at HERE

THE THREE SEAGULLS, OR MASHAMASHAMASHA!


March 1 - 10, 2012 at HERE

ENSEMBLE

created and performed by Theater Reconstruction Ensemble

written by Jaclyn Backhaus

after Anton Chekhov

conceived and directed by John Kurzynowski

Performers: Celeste Arias, Jaclyn Backhaus, Michael Barringer, Robbie Baum, Caitlin Bebb, Scarlett Bermingham, Andrew Butler, Matt Carr, Matt Connolly, Nick Fesette, Leigh Jones, Nathaniel Kent, Alex Kveton, Whit Leyenberger, Emily Marro, Christopher Norwood, Josh Odsess-Rubin, Anastasia Olowin, Jon Riddleberger, Kelly Rogers, Eugene Michael Santiago, Patrick Scheid, Lauren Swan-Potras, Merlin Whitehawk, Brian Williams

Producing Directors: Sydney Matthews and Reed Whitney

Scenic Design: Jonathan Cottle | Lighting Design: Marika Kent | Sound Design: Kate Marvin | Stage Manager: Dina Rodriguez


SYNOPSIS

Subtext and samovars run Russianly rampant in this Chekhovian mash-up, featuring a cast of twenty-four actors slapping on some of the most famous (patronymic) names in the history of modern theater. In combining Chekhov’s The Seagull and Three Sisters, Theater Reconstruction Ensemble seeks to explore the foundation of contemporary theatrics by inventing our own elaborate experiment of truly Russian proportions.


photos by Suzi Sadler


press

‘The Three Seagulls’ is a thoughtful, astute, and invigorating performance by a sensational, energetic cast that never stops. The staging, seamless design, and flawless ensemble work reveal this show as a directorial tour-de-force by John Kurzynowski. This script and its execution represent the kind of premium quality production that comes from a fruitful and synergetic collaboration between writer and director. ‘The Three Seagulls’ is a must see for any Chekhov lover or follower of indie theatre. This fabulous production signals Theater Reconstruction Ensemble and its members as up-and-comers to watch in years to come.
— Theatre Is Easy
 
‘The Three Seagulls, or MASHAMASHAMASHA!’ is GREAT! It is so refreshing to see Chekhov presented in a vibrant, fun manner and Theater Reconstruction Ensemble’s production does a beautiful job of capturing the essence and intention, rather than the heaviness and nostalgia, of Chekhov. This is how Chekhov should be!
— Indie Theater Now
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DOCTOR FAUSTUS


November 2 - 12, 2011 at The Brick

DOCTOR FAUSTUS


November 2 - 12, 2011 at The Brick

ENSEMBLE

created and performed by Theater Reconstruction Ensemble

after Christopher Marlowe

conceived and directed by John Kurzynowski

Performers: Celeste Arias, Hunter Canning, Matt Carr, Matt Connolly, Nathaniel Kent, Emily Marro, Anastasia Olowin, Jon Riddleberger, Eugene Michael Santiago, Tina Shepard

Producing Director: Sydney Matthews

Associate Director: Lauren Swan-Potras | Scenic and Lighting Design: Jonathan Cottle | Sound Design: Kate Marvin | Master of Electricity: Peter Mills Weiss


SYNOPSIS

John Faustus, in his soul-consuming quest for knowledge and power, conjures up the most hellish spirits of the underworld, and strikes a bargain with the devil that's just too good to be true. Christopher Marlowe's classic take on magic and mortality is brought to life by an ensemble of actors and designers working collectively to reconstruct one of the most controversial plays of the last 500 years.

Through the use of opera, sequins, slapstick, devil horns, angel wings, banjos, fake beards, magic, men in skirts, sex, religion, politics, fireworks, whips, Helen of Troy and the Seven Deadly Sins themselves, Theater Reconstruction Ensemble tells the ultimate tale of good vs. evil. Hold on to your soul, cause the devil is on the prowl.


photos by Kate Gagnon

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A DOLL'S HOUSE


April 14 - 17, 2011 at The Access Theater Gallery

A DOLL'S HOUSE


April 14 - 17, 2011 at The Access Theater Gallery

ENSEMBLE

created and performed by Theater Reconstruction Ensemble

after Henrik Ibsen

conceived and directed by John Kurzynowski

Performers: Jaclyn Backhaus, Maxwell Eddy, Stacy Jordan, Anastasia Olowin, Jon Riddleberger

Producing Director: Sydney Matthews

Sound Design: Kate Marvin | Scenic and Lighting Design: Natalie Robin


SYNOPSIS

Nora's struggle to play the part of her husband's obedient little lark culminates in the door slam heard 'round the world. In our inaugural production, Theater Reconstruction Ensemble examines the relationships between husband and wife, greed and power, desperation and necessity, and our own relationship to Ibsen's classic play.


photos by Hunter Canning