In 2009, Redshift Productions teamed up with Physicist Itai Cohen and Choreographer Maren Waldman to develop Dance of Scales, an interactive performance expressing concepts studied in Dr. Cohen’s Lab. The piece was inspired by Cohen’s research on the movement of particles at different length scales. The one hour performance took the audience through the ways particles move from Brownian motion (movement of the very, very small) to movement at the human scale. Cohen’s lively demonstrations were woven into the dance, and the dancers became expressions and examples of his concepts.
What makes someone a parent? Love? Genetics? Giving birth? This is the question at the center of renowned chemist and playwright Carl Djerassi’s play Taboos. Returning to his scientific roots, Djerassi explores the other side of planning parenthood. When a lesbian couple and an infertile Christian couple each look to have a child, more than biology gets in the way of the idea of the “perfect family.” Taboos is a story about the unexpected, and often messy, results that arise when emotions and science collide.
Commedia meets film noir in this comedy about art, ego, obsession …and sticky fruit. A famous writer obsessed with reputation fakes his death in order to read his own obituaries. His shrink knows what’s going on, but can’t tell anyone, not even the writer’s wife. But she’s soon on his trail, as his “death” ignites a chain of outrageous events.
She’s a top art historian in a world famous museum. He’s a distinguished professor of chemistry. She searches for artistic truth through connoisseurship; he finds scientific fact through cold material analysis. Between them stands the object of her affection: a revered classical statue long thought to be a roman original…and he just proved it to be a 16th century cast. As personal rivalries and professional reputations clash, how far will each go to prove the other wrong?
Should everything dance to humanity’s tune, or does such a self-important view lead to the destruction of life on earth? This question is addressed by the performance piece SeaChange: Reversing the Tide, created by Roger Payne and Lisa Harrows. By combining the knowledge of science with the wisdom of poetry Roger Payne and Lisa Harrow argue compellingly that man is not the overseer of life but an integral part of life’s complex web, and that our survival requires that we attend not just to our own wellbeing, but also to the wellbeing of the entire web of life.
It’s always Happy Hour at The Event Horizon, a bar at the edge of a black hole where legendary scientific mixologists Albert Einstein and Niels Bohr pass infinite good times with their loyal patrons. Particles collide, customers perform experiments with shot glasses and ashtrays, and the laws of physics come home to roost. Regulars at this establishment include a photon that has daringly escaped from a black hole, the oldest galaxy in the universe who imparts the wisdom of her age, and a gaggle of theories that challenge one another to pub games to determine which one will prevail. Take one part Cheers and one part NOVA and you’ve got Happy Hour at the Event Horizon.
Redshift Productions was created in 2000, when Megan K. Halpern and Max Evjen wrote and directed Elements at HERE Arts Center in New York City for the American Living Room Series. Elements combined live music and dance in an exploration of Aristotle’s four elements: air, water, fire and earth.