Tempest in a Tape Deck

If you’re at all familiar with Buntport, you already know that its latest original work, Wake, will not really resemble its inspiration, Shake-speare’s The Tempest. Somehow, Buntport’s imaginative crew will find a unique way to deconstruct the story. “We’re calling it a ‘corruption of The Tempest,’” explains company member Brian Colonna. “We take some of the characters — Miranda, Caliban, Ariel and Prospero — and reinvent the timeline. The main concept is that instead of books, it’s audio recordings or personal mythology that [Prospero’s] made Taliban and Miranda learn.”

That’s where Adam Stone — let’s call him Buntport’s fifth Beatle — comes into the picture. As the George Martin figure, Stone — who’s worked with the troupe on previous plays that happened to be musicals — has created a complicated soundscape of looping audiotapes placed throughout the set, spewing Prospero’s memories as mixed original text and actual Shakespearean dialogue that slowly breaks down with time. He’ll choreograph the mechanical chorus from the stage with the actors. “I think the audience will see tape used in ways you may not have seen it used before,” Colonna adds.

The same goes for Shakespeare’s script. “With Shakespearean language, you have to be a little careful,” he explains. So there will be bits of it, but not enough to destroy the Buntportian denouement.

Wake opens at 8 p.m. tonight at Buntport, 717 Lipan Street, and continues through February 23, with performances Thursdays through Sundays. Opening- and closing-night tickets are $20 (reception included), and regular admission is $13 to $16; reserve online at www.buntport.com or call 720-946-1388.
Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 3 p.m. Starts: Jan. 25. Continues through Feb. 17, 2013

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Susan Froyd started writing for Westword as the "Thrills" editor in 1992 and never quite left the fold. These days she still freelances for the paper in addition to walking her dogs, enjoying cheap ethnic food and reading voraciously. Sometimes she writes poetry.
Contact: Susan Froyd