PRELUDE Festival 2023
Room, Room, Room, in the many Mansions of eternal glory for Thee and for everyone
Friend of Friend
Theater, Multimedia, Music
Friday, October 20, 2023
The Brick, 579 Metropolitan Avenue, Brooklyn, NY, USA
Room, Room, Room, in the many Mansions of eternal glory for Thee and for everyone is an acoustic hyperpop folk opera about death, sex, God, gender, utopia and the end of the world.
Co-creators/Performers: Philip Santos Schaffer, syd island, and Andy Boyd
The piece centers on the Publick Universal Friend, an American mystic who had a vision in 1776 in which they were told by two angels to preach the word of God. From the moment of their vision on, the newly reborn PUF refused to use gendered pronouns or presentation, and when asked what gender PUF was, would simply reply “I am that I am.” Room, Room, Room, combines rituals from the 18th century Quaker meetinghouse to the contemporary club, using the story of PUF to reflect on our own experiences as embodied souls in 21st century America. While problematizing the American vision of utopia, we aim to invoke a temporary genderless/genderful? utopia with our audience (even if just for a second).
produced by The Brick
This project was developed in part by The Assembly’s Deceleration Lab. We would like to thank Dr. Scott Larson for discussing this project with us. Additional special thanks: University Settlement, Emma Rivera, Kai Song Nichols
Content / Trigger Description:
cw: discussions of transphobia, death, America, colonial violence, AW: projections, loud-ish music
Andy Boyd is a playwright based in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. He is a graduate of the playwriting MFA at Columbia University. His plays include The Trade Federation, or, Let’s Explore Globalization Through the Star Wars Prequels (Otherworld Theatre, IRT), Occupy Prescott (Theater in Asylum at Jalopy Theatre), and Three Scenes in the Life of a Trotskyist (forthcoming in Spring 2024). He also releases music as Andy the Giant and posts cartoons on Instagram at andyjboyd. The Trade Federation is published by NoPassport Press and his chapbook of short plays Lil’ Sweetums is published by Bottlecap Press.
syd island (they/them) is a queer vocal and performing artist based in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. they have a BA in Music from Brown University and are a graduate of Arizona School for the Arts. syd performs and collaborates with Pioneers Go East Collective in My Name’sound, most recently as a Resident Artist 3.0 at BAM in 2023, as well as in BRIClab in 2022. alongside co-creators Andy Boyd and Philip Santos Schaffer, syd developed Room, Room, Room, in the many Mansions of eternal glory for Thee and for everyone as a part of The Assembly’s 2022 Deceleration Lab. syd has collaborated on several incarnations of Devotion Devotion by Lydia Mokdessi and Jason Bartell at The Exponential Festival (2020), Crossroads at Judson Memorial Church (2021), and The Brick (2022). in 2019, syd performed in Mae May’s softboarding: medium shred at Roulette Intermedium. in addition to performing in experimental theater and dance, they sing choral and plainchant sacred music at All Saints’ Episcopal Church in Park Slope.
Philip Santos Schaffer is a playmaker creating interactive performances in intimate and unconventional settings. Their work has been seen in bathtubs across the country, listened to over the phone, and found in a series of living rooms (as well as appearing in more conventional spaces). Philip’s work deals with politics, pop culture, intimacy and empathy through participation, humor, music, and more. They have been an Artist in Residence at University Settlement, part of The Assembly’s Deceleration Lab, and a MORE Art Engaged Artist Fellow. Philip has a BFA in Directing from Hofstra University and an MFA in Dramaturgy from Columbia University. Philip is 1/5 of the creative team behind WalkUpArts, which they co-founded in 2015. www.philipsantosschaffer.com
Image design by syd island
@fri3ndoffri3nd, @andyjboyd, @welikephilip, @syd.island