Wake

For this production, we based our work on a documentary account of a mother who commits an unforgivable act by accidentally killing her own child. Fueled by unending guilt, she cycles through haunting dreamscapes of death and rebirth. As her reality decomposes into surreal nightmare, she voices her infinite despair amidst vivid visual and sound environments. We explored trauma, loss, guilt, grief and ultimately community healing through a richly visual and aural landscape through a multidisciplinary music theatre work that is part theatre, dance, opera, chamber and electronic music. Because of timing, I was challenged to design a set for an production that was not yet written. This pushed me into exploring the malleable material of plastic sheeting to create the physical manifestation of the mother’s emotional landscapes.

Playwright: 
Christopher Chen and John Bernstein
Director: 
Mei Ann Teo
Mei Ann Teo is a Singaporean theatre/film maker working internationally and based in the U.S.A. Her work has toured extensively including Belgium's Festival de Liege (Lyrics From Lockdown, “Truly polished, meaningful and entertaining” -New York Times), Edinburgh International Fringe (MiddleFlight, “Stunning” -Scotsman), M1 Singapore Fringe Festival (The Shape of a Bird, "Superb staging" - Straits Times), INFANT Experimental Theatre Festival in Novi Sad, Serbia, Beijing International Festival (Labyrinth - Top 8 in Beijing News), Dumbo Arts Festival, Shanghai International Experimental Theatre Festival (Caucasian Chalk Circle with all CU MFA actors), and the Montreal World Film Festival. She has directed and developed new work at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival (Phil Killian Fellow 2015), Goodman Theatre, Public Theater, Berkeley Rep, Yellow Earth in London, and was the first Asian director to work at the National Black Theatre. She is the first cohort for the Hemera Foundation Tending Space Fellowship and ArtEquity Facilitator Training, and has received grants from the Center for Cultural Innovation, the Asian Cultural Council, NET, and LMCC. She is an Artist in Residence for The Performance Project at University Settlement 2015/2016 and a Professor of Directing and Dramaturgy at Hampshire College. MFA in Theatre Directing from Columbia University. Future projects include The Paper Dreams of Harry Chin at the History Theatre in Minneapolis, Dim Sum Warriors The Musical at Theatre Above in Shanghai.
Lighting Designer: 
Jennifer Reiser
Costume Designer: 
Ari Fulton
Projection Designer: 
Sean "Scrap" Wren and Aleksey Nuzhunov
Venue : 
Columbia Stages, NYC