New York – Feb. 27 – Magis Theatre Company’s Logos Project presents a revival of their critically acclaimed production of *mark - a solo performance of the Gospel of Mark. Originally produced at La MaMa ETC and directed by Luann Purcell Jennings in 2014, it features original music composed by internationally acclaimed, award-winning composer Elizabeth Swados. Actor George Drance will again perform the role of the storyteller. James Martin SJ called the production "moving, creative, exciting, challenging, profound." *mark will be performed at Theatre 315 located at 315 W. 47th St. New York, NY. The show dates are as follows: The show dates are as follows: April 6, April 12 and April 13 at 7PM; April 7, 14 at 8PM; April 8 at 2PM. Tickets are available at Eventbrite: tinyurl.com/36h7rzdt. The current production is directed by Jackie Lucid.
This year is the 10th anniversary of “The Joy of the Gospel” in which His Holiness Pope Francis writes: “Whenever we make the effort to return to the source and to recover the original freshness of the Gospel, new avenues arise, new paths of creativity open up, with different forms of expression, more eloquent signs and words with new meaning for today’s world.” Magis’ production of *mark takes this as its inspiration.
Mark is the oldest of the four Gospels, and it had an early tradition of being performed aloud from start to finish. It was finally written down during Nero’s brutal persecution of the followers of “the Way.” Reciting the Gospel gave courage to this community of quiet rebels whose radical compassion threatened the Empire’s status quo. Today it is rare for an audience to hear this gospel performed in its totality, or to experience it with the immediacy of that dangerous period of oppression. In his contemporary solo performance, Drance reclaims the urgency of these words as they might have been first spoken. This messenger of commitment and love is portrayed as a wandering street artist, using drawings to illuminate the text, and to map out the geography of Christ’s mission.
“Magis Theatre Company is daring to be different.” – The New York Times
Magis Theatre Company, founded in 2003, is an ensemble of actors and teaching artists who came together out of desire: desire to teach, desire to train, and desire to act. The company has produced a variety of actor driven, physically based theatre productions that explore the human condition. Recent productions include: Thornton Wilder’s The Alcestiad performed at FDR Four Freedoms Park; Calderon’s Two Dreams, presenting both the 1636 comedia and the 1677 auto sacramental of Life is a Dream; Leslie Lewis’ Miracle in Rwanda, testifying to the transformative power of prayer and forgiveness; and In Love With Thee, mystical poetry in performance from the Jewish, Christian and Muslim traditions.
Actor George Drance, Artist-in-Residence at Fordham University, has performed and directed in over twenty-five countries on five continents. In March, Drance, who is Ukrainian, will appear at LA Mama in Radio 477!, a new show created by Yara Arts Group and Ukrainian artists about the city of Kharkiv, its jazz history, and how it stood up to Putin today. With texts and lyrics by award-winning Ukrainian poet Serhiy Zhadan, music by Anthony Coleman, it is directed by Virlana Tkacz.
“Drance is one hell of an actor. Handsome, charismatic, and committed. It’s clear he means the words.” – Kerri Allen, about The Great Divorce in Backstage.
“George Drance is a standout.” – Anita Gates, about Communications from a Cockroach, The New York Times.
Perhaps best known for her Broadway and international smash hit Runaways, Elizabeth Swados (1951-2016) composed, wrote, and directed issue- oriented theatre for over 30 years. Some of her works include the Obie Award winning Trilogy, at La Mama, and Alice at the Palace, with Meryl Streep at the New York Shakespeare Festival. Awards include: Five Tony® nominations, three Obie® Awards, a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Ford Grant, the Helen Hayes Award, a Lila Acheson Wallace Grant, PEN, and others. Before her death in 2016, Swados composed music for four Magis productions.
Visit the Magis Theatre Company online at: https://www.magistheatre.org