NEW YORK, NY.-
The ever-inventive London-based theater company Improbable returns to Columbus for the world premiere of Panic from March 4 to 7, 2009, the culmination of two creative residencies supported by a Wexner Center Residency Award. This show will highlight Improbable's clever stagecraft and trademark balance of humor and keen insight as it examines the eternal romantic struggles of men and women with dramatic intercessions by the Great God Pan. Panic, which will tour internationally after its Wexner Center
debut, marks the group’s return to intimate-scale work. It will feature Improbable co-artistic director Phelim McDermott surrounded by a supporting cast of women.
"Come into the forest. Away from civilization. Where wild things are. Where nymphs bathe and play. Where Pan sleeps. Careful not to wake him, he is the bringer of Panic. The Great God Pan: goat horns, goat’s legs, goatee beard, and goaty penis, chasing his nymphs. But Pan is dead. Since AD 33 so the story goes. The only god to die in our time. So that can’t be him you saw through the window of a South London flat or running after a mugger near Brick Lane or sporting a cowboy hat in a bar here in Columbus. Because the Great God Pan is dead. Or is he? Drawn from personal stories and current obsessions, Panic is Improbable with brown paper and projections, a lot of self-help books, and some very chaseable nymphs."
Charles Helm, director of performing arts at the Wexner Center, notes, “Panic is the second project of Improbable’s that we’ve supported with our creative residency program, after having launched the development of its show The Hanging Man here in 2002. I’m pleased to see that our relationship with Improbable has grown close over the years, and that our audience eagerly looks forward to its return here each time. That an international company such as Improbable considers Columbus to be a second artistic home speaks to the success of our residency program to engage the best artists to produce good work here.”
While working on Panic, Improbable has other irons in the fire: Co-artistic directors Phelim McDermott and Julian Crouch, who served as director and designer for the staging of the Philip Glass opera Satyagraha at the Metropolitan Opera in April 2008, will be overseeing the Met’s Gala immediately after Panic premieres at the Wexner Center. In addition, Improbable is working on a Broadway musical based on The Addams Family. This widely acclaimed group has been called “one of the most energizing and provocative forces in British theatre” (The Guardian, UK).