PITTSFIELD––March 20th, 2018. Clara Strauch and Maizy Scarpa, creators of the theatre-concert hybrid Wayward Home, are bringing their musical folktale to venues across the Northeast this spring. Beginning at Main Street Arts in Saxtons River VT and continuing to the Berkshires and beyond, the tour is an in-concert version of the show developed at Hubbard Hall Center for the Arts (Cambridge NY) in 2015, and Opera House Arts (Stonington ME) in 2017.
Inspired by Noah’s Ark and migration stories, Wayward Home is the tale of a family forced to begin again. Through original music and fantastical storytelling, a trio of performers untangles a universal tale of love, loss, and rebirth, and delve into the question “How do we keep going when the world turns upside down?” Three performers play all the roles, accompany themselves on musical instruments and found objects (bells, typewriters, jars of water and more) live on-stage. The set is minimal and–– with no fourth wall–– performer-audience relationship is paramount.
Wayward Home began as a long-distance collaboration between Berkshire playwright Maizy Scarpa and Swedish-American composer Clara Strauch, who met during their studies at NYU Tisch. Fueled by a fascination with immigration stories and feminist angles on myths, the duo seeks to reveal the untold sides of stories. As queer women, they believe that giving voice to lesser-heard stories is not just a preference but a necessity. “Part of the impetus for creating Wayward Home was to tell “Noah’s wife’s” side of the story,” explains Scarpa. “In the Bible, she isn’t even given a name.” The phrase “lesser-heard” is also literal: “In a culture where visual communication is dominant, Wayward Home invites audiences to a theatrical experience with a heightened soundscape,” says Strauch. “Through a stripped-down production, the story expands to its full potential. Audiences’ imaginations are invited to co-create the journey.”
Strauch was nominated for Outstanding Original Music in The 2017 New York Innovative Theatre Awards for her score for Smith Street Stage’s The Tempest, and also received a STIM 2017 Songwriting Prize for her upcoming solo debut album Persephone. Scarpa’s plays have been featured in Berkshire Playwrights Lab’s Radius Festival two years running, and she caused a stir in the Berkshire theatre scene with her inventive direction of Annie Baker’s The Aliens in the Housatonic Curtain Company tunnel in 2015. This April, Strauch returns to the role of Anna, a piano-playing adventurer. She is joined by Didrik Soderstrom as Noah, a fisherman with a sixth-sense for disaster. Scarpa plays their mercurial young daughter, the ever-curious Iris.
Local performances venues include Pauline Productions (Ashfield MA April 19th & 20th), No. Six Depot Cafe (West Stockbridge MA April 22nd) and Spectrum Playhouse (Lee MA April 24th). In addition to public venues, the tour will also perform pro bono for several assisted living facilities including Mt Greylock Extended Care and Hillcrest Commons in Pittsfield. In an effort to keep the show accessible to all who wish to attend, no one will be turned away for inability to pay. Tickets vary by location, and are available at waywardhome.weebly.com. Many of the venues are by donation ($15-$25 encouraged).
The production is supported in part by grants for the Lee Cultural Council and the Ashfield Cultural Council, local agencies supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency. Additional support comes from individual donors and local businesses including Considine & Leary Law Offices, Kent’s Vacuum Center, MacCaro Real Estate, Toole Insurance, Wood Bros Music, Berkshire Print Shop and Carr Hardware.
Music by Clara Strauch Book by Maizy Scarpa
April 13-14 7:30 pm Saxtons River, VT Main Street Arts
April 19-20 7 pm Ashfield, MA Pauline Productions
April 22 5 pm West Stockbridge, MA No. 6 Depot
April 24 7 pm Lee, MA Spectrum Playhouse
April 27 7 pm Plymouth, MA Halfway Farm (a new venue)
May 3 7 pm Brooklyn, NY 61 Local
– Post Star review of Wayward Home at Hubbard Hall.
– Albany Times Union
– WBTN Radio Interview
– Post Star