O.K. - THE MUSICAL (Pre-Production)/ (Dress Rehearsals)
insitu Berlin / KW Institute for Contemporary Art
O.K. – The Musical is an evolving community theatre musical based around the history and lore of Kinderhook, a small, somewhat obscure town in upstate New York. Written and directed by artist and musician Christopher Kline, the musical is oriented around the propagation of the word "O.K." and its associations with Old Kinderhook.
Taking place across two venues, this project consisted of an evolving exhibition and a large-scale musical performance with a cast of 30 actors and an 11 piece small orchestra.
For »(Pre-Production)« the two-room project space of insitu was transformed into the front- and back-stage of a community theatre replete with stage, balcony, woodshop, dressing room, prop-storage, and make-up table. The space was developed and used over the course of the exhibition for the production of all aspects of the musical, and was activated daily with set- and costume-making, rehearsals, children’s workshops, and presentations on the history of Kinderhook.
On the last day of the exhibition the results were packed up and moved to KW Institute for Contemporary Art for the performance »(Dress Rehearsals)« , a 30-minute romp through Kinderhook’s last 400 years. Scenes included »Henry Hudson Encounters the Mohicans« , a take on Washington Irving’s »The Legend of Sleepy Hollow« , a spooky encounter between the ghost of Martin Van Buren and his niece discussing the Indian Removal Act of 1830, a dramatic lament by a family of Bigfoots freezing to death, and a Grand Finale of Kinderhook’s people and architecture joining together in a happy-go-lucky song and dance attempt to transcend 400 years of troubled history.
»Framework 5: O.K. The Musical (Pre-Production) / (Dress Rehearsals)« is part of insitu collective's Cycle II, a series of exhibitions on the topic of ‘relationships, networks and connections' in which insitu collective established a series of formats or 'frameworks' for invited artists and curators to respond to.
70 people took part in creating this work of "community theatre as community theatre". Art Direction was overseen by Leanne MacKay and Music Direction by Elisabeth Wood.
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15.01.-21.02.2015Exhibition at insitu Berlin (former location)Kurfürstenstrasse 21–22, Berlin-Schöneberg26.02.2015Performance at KW Institute for Contemporary ArtAuguststraße 69, 10117 BerlinThis exhibition is part of insitu collective's Cycle II, which also included:»Framework 1: extrasensory bonds«»Framework 2: feel at home«»Framework 3: meet your idol«»Framework 4: across the lines«»Framework 6: parallelisms«
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Images top - bottom:
Christopher Kline »O.K. – The Musical (Dress Rehearsals)« (still) 2015. Performance at KW Institute for Contemporary Art Berlin. Courtesy the artist.
Christopher Kline »O.K. – The Musical (Pre-Production)« 2015. Photo: Trevor GoodChristopher Kline »O.K. – The Musical (Pre-Production)« 2015. Photo: Trevor GoodChristopher Kline »O.K. – The Musical (Pre-Production)« (kids' production workshop) 2015. Photo: insitu e.V.
Christopher Kline »O.K. – The Musical (Pre-Production)« (button production) 2015. Photo: insitu e.V.Christopher Kline »O.K. – The Musical (Pre-Production)« (choir rehearsal) 2015.
Christopher Kline »O.K. – The Musical (Pre-Production)« 2015. Photo: Trevor Good.