Best Experimental Theater - 2012
Cutting Ball Theater
Artistic people often talk about trying something new, taking chances, failing occasionally. But most don't mean it. Really, what most of us want is to do something familiar that will succeed. That's not the case at the Cutting Ball Theater, a company genuinely ready to try anything — even a musical about an escaped male slave dressed as a woman and searching for his daughter, all blended with the Persephone/Demeter myth and including Jesus as an imaginary friend and the Mississippi River as a character (... and Jesus Moonwalks the Mississippi). Or Shakespeare's The Tempest set in a psychiatrist's office in the bottom of a swimming pool. Or Tontlawald, inspired by Poland's Teatr ZAR, with movement and music as central as text, and based on a fairy tale about a doll with a snake and a piece of a bread in its chest cavity. Co-Artistic Directors Rob Melrose and Paige Rogers aren't kidding around when they talk about experimental theater — and, fortunately for us, the experiments yield such stellar results.