Thursday, April 24, 2008

Cosmic Spelunker Theatre Reunion


Somehow, after a long hiatus, Cosmic Spelunker Theatre is rehearsing again-- not the incarnation of Cosmic Spelunker Theatre that produced Waltzing to War but the original trio of myself, William J. Barnum, and James Van Looy. The three of us had not performed together since the last Movement Works in Progress at the original Mobius Arts Space on Congress street in Fort Point. By coincidence, I had just screened an excerpt from this show for Art Hennessey's class at Emerson College.

Bill had broken his wrist sometime after and took time off from working with James and myself and eventually lost interest in coming back. James and I regrouped as a duo, eventually receiving a modicum of recognition. Chad Parenteau who has in recent years taken over the soon to be thirty-seven year old poetry venue, Stone Soup Poetry had steered our countless exchanges towards persuading me to return to Stone Soup. Despite our friendship, I had been reluctant due to events that had occurred when I had been on the Board of Directors long before Chad had become involved with the series (though I did become involved with Stone Soup's online journal, Spoonful.) More recently, Chad suggested a Cosmic Spelunker Theatre reunion to both Bill and James-- they agreed and once he had Bill and James on board, I agreed as well.

In an email dated March 28, 2008, Chad wrote back:

I'm so stoked you're coming back. I thought when I asked James to contact you that I was basically doing my impression of Lorne Michaels trying to reunite The Beatles.


Which besides begging the question as to how Stone Soup became solvent enough to offer us a check for US$3,200-- makes me wonder how it was a performance art troupe managed to become the Beatles of the Boston Poetry Scene during our hiatus. (The British rock analogy I was working with at the time however was that of the "power trio" in part because we were aiming for the sensory overload associated with such groups as The Jimi Hendrix Experience and Cream.) Obviously, we had an impact on somebody.

Currently, rehearsals seem to be aimed at recreating our performance at Mobius for the much smaller room at the Out of the Blue Gallery (incidentally, Cosmic Spelunker's first show was in the original Out of the Blue location) with some material from Waltzing to War and some of Bill's compositions.

The Cosmic Spelunker Theatre Reunion show will be on Monday, May 4th at 8pm at the Out of the Blue Gallery at 106 Prospect Street, Cambridge MA near the Central Square.

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