JUNE 3RD, 2018. Toronto, ON. Fresh from the enormous success of our 2017 production of Blue Remembered Hills (winner of the 2017 My Theatre Award for Outstanding Production of the year), Good Old Neon returns to the Toronto Fringe with a stage adaptation (of sorts!) of the writings of the Soviet-era surrealist writer Daniil Kharms, helmed by company co-founders Alexander Offord (write/director of the multiple award-winning and sell-out Fringe hit Potosí) and Nicole Wilson (director, designer, and choreographer of the genre-defying Blue Remembered Hills).
Daniil Kharms (1905-1942) was at the vanguard of the avant-garde movement in the early Soviet Union. His poems, plays, and short prose were all but ignored during his lifetime, only to be rediscovered by artists including Samuel Beckett, Donald Barthelme, and George Saunders later in the 20th century. In works that defy interpretation, ranging from the haunting to the hilariously absurd, Kharms challenged the uniformity of Stalinist art, ultimately to a tragic end.
One Left Hour uses selections of Kharm’s work to chart the trajectory of his life from the founder of an avant-garde performance collective (the OBERIU) to his horrifying death of starvation in a Soviet insane asylum during the Siege of Leningrad.
The show features an ensemble cast working together in a brand-new format, eschewing traditional text-based narratives in favor of a creative process driven by experimentation, spontaneity, and pure performance. A natural evolution from Good Old Neon’s previous work, the show is a multimedia theatrical pageant, incorporating music, puppetry, choreography, free association, improvisation, clown, performance art into a 60-minute meditation on the question of how we make meaning of art — and how we make meaning of life.
Text by Daniil Kharms, Alexander Offord, Nicole Wilson
Directed & Designed by Alexander Offord & Nicole Wilson
Created by the Company
Graeme Black Robinson Jack Comerford
Alexander Offord Suzanne Roberts Smith
Geneviève Trottier Nicole Wilson
Stage Managed by Giulia D’Amanzo