Shadowland Live OFF-BROADWAY REVIEWS

Photo: Sara Krulwich
  • NY TIMES

  • Opening Night:
    November 30, 2015
    Closing:
    December 6, 2015

    Theater: La MaMa E.T.C. / 74A East Fourth Street, New York, NY, 10003

    Synopsis: 

    John Jesurun’s cross-media storytelling returns as "Shadowland Live", a continuation of his webserial Shadowland. His exploded narrative form is a continuously revised “plot” created and shot in front of an audience. A combination of the memorized, improvised, playback, music, media and the internet. Two new episodes take on the changing perception of reality manipulated by ubiquitous mediation and a host of virtuosic veteran performers and new talents.

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  • NEW YORK TIMES REVIEW OF Shadowland Live

    Exploring the Edge of Soap Opera in ‘Shadowland’ at La MaMa

    Ben Brantley

    December 2, 2015: Long before the young video artist Ryan Trecartin grabbed the collective lapels of the art world with his gender-splicing, homemade digital narratives, John Jesurun was creating his own archive of boundary-blurring films with a nuclear family of collaborators. But the specific form he continues to work in — and gleefully warp — harks back to a more venerable breed of storytelling. That’s the labyrinthine, heavy-breathing soap opera, the likes of which dominated afternoon television until the dubious verisimilitude of reality shows largely elbowed it off the small screen. As befits the work of a multimedia artist associated with experimental arcana, Mr. Jesurun’s variations on the genre — which sometimes combine video with theater — tend to be harder to follow than the more usual fare, even the kind that relies heavily on evil twins, faked deaths and false identities. The effect is of watching, say, a vintage episode of “As the World Turns” while under the influence of a heavy hallucinogen, or while you’re half asleep on the sofa next to Grandma. All you can do is succumb dreamily to the tidal pull of illogical events presented with an aura of irrefutable logic.

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