Bedlam employs an ongoing ensemble of actors, playwrights, directors, designers, stage managers, dramaturges, technicians, and theater administrators. Our casting is often unconventional in that it typically reflects the particular spirit of the piece we are working on, the group of people involved in the piece, the characters they portray and the story, with no particular attention to the age of the actor, the gender, nor the race. Bedlam does not discriminate against race, religion, sexual orientation, or gender.
To continue to cultivate a core company of artists with a shared aesthetic, and shared language of creative process, with an attention to discipline, work ethic, an exhaustive understanding of text and story, athleticism, versatility, simplicity, generosity and safety, spontaneity and perspective (to time, place, person).
All Bedlam productions have been performed in vastly different spaces in vastly different ways throughout NYC, and each space was chosen for its particular flexibility and aesthetic. Bedlam strives to use each space in new and unexpected ways. By doing so, Bedlam plays with the audience’s perspective: to the story, the actors and to each other.
To procure our own space in the near future – a home base, that includes a functional theater, and rehearsal and office spaces to centralize our creative and administrative work and to give our audiences a consistent destination.
The story at hand and the storytelling remain the priority at Bedlam. We are inspired by the challenge of a Classic play and are called to the rigor and the responsibility of that challenge. The Classics carry a standard of language, dialogue, insight and incisiveness that is unique and Bedlam is interested in rising to the occasion of that standard with a fresh energy and modern day perspective. In addition, Bedlam searches for new plays and playwrights to work with that share a similar interest.
To upend audiences’ perspectives on Classic texts, to subvert their relationship to Chekov, Shaw and Shakespeare, for example, so that they hear old texts anew. By pairing the Classics with great new works, we hope to illuminate the shared and contrasting tenets of both.
To work with space, text, and artist, to override audiences’ prescribed expectations when they walk into a theater. Bedlam attempts to engage audience members in such a way that, if only for the duration of the play, they forget where they are, to a degree who they are, and experience the story as if they were for the first time.
At Bedlam, we believe in the power of the performing arts to aid in the post-traumatic recovery process and the reintegration of Veterans back into civilian life. We offer a free ongoing acting class for Veterans on Monday evenings dedicated to exploring the plays of William Shakespeare. Participants are also invited to bring in material of their choice to work on for auditions and performances. Participants are invited to share their work in showcase presentations, and participate in ongoing reading series. The class is free and welcomes actors of all levels, as well as non-actors.
To continue to provide an acting class to Veterans FREE OF CHARGE. This program is entirely supported by outside funding and individual gifts. It is our hope to continue to be able to subsidize these expenses so as to continue our Outreach work.
Photo credit: Elizabeth Nichols