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Pooja Ru Prema's Living Room Theatre at Rotary Way in Great Barrington. Above, last summer's performance.

Living Room Theatre to pop up in Rotary Way: Taboo is the topic

By Friday, May 23, 2014 Arts & Entertainment, Life In the Berkshires, The Vibe

A bit of magic, now and then, is good for the soul, nourishing for the spirit.

Like a rainbow from a passing thunderstorm.

The unexpected can give life its vitality. Even, its meaning.

So if you have a taste for surprise, and spontaneity, and the impromptu all flavored with the gift for language, come to Rotary Way – the alley beside Rubiner’s Cheesemongers on Main Street in Great Barrington – at 7 p.m. Sunday, May 25 (rain date, Monday, May 26, at 7), for an appearance by the Living Room Theatre, a pop-up stagework that’s the brainchild of Pooja Ru Prema. It’s free.

In the downtown passageway, she sets up couches, lamps, rugs, hassocks and chairs, to create an outdoor living room as a stage.

And this Sunday the topic is taboos.

“We’re collecting performances about those things we don’t want to talk about, varying from the serious to the funny, like sex, death and politics,” she explains. “It will be kind of an open mike, but more vetted. Short scenes, mostly monologues of people improvising or reading. And there will be music.”

She adds that the work will be all original stories but this performance, because of its topic, would not be appropriate for children.

“In our last Living Room Theatre, we explored the experience of miracles,” she said during a conversation outside the H.R. Zeppelin chocolate shop beside the Triplex Theatre. “People really listen, and get focused.”

The Living Room Theatre, she explains, is a BYOAC production – that is, Bring Your Own Armchair – if you have one available.

In her role as artistic director of Rogue Angel Theatre ( https://www.rogueangeltheatre.com ), Pooja Ru has summoned numerous theatrical performances in public spaces – in fields, in tunnels, in derelict mill building courtyards, on railroad tracks, in streams. And they are magical.

Her credits include a solo clown tour by bicycle through Kerala, India; “The Screens”with Kathryn Hamilton and company; “Burlesque from Across the Tracks”and “Blue Venice”with Heather Fisch; “Eurydice” with Walking the Dog Theatre; devised work with WAM Theatre; co-producing the annual vintage-era “Topple & Bottom Carnival”; creating, directing and producing “Isis-Chernobyl: A Tale of Uncertain Fruit”; her one-woman show “Solidao,” and “Rites of Passage,” an epic installation in homage to the initiatory stages of women’s lives in collaboration with 50 local artists, musicians, dancers, and filmmakers.



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