The VORTEX presents the world premiere of Heather Woodbury’s
As the Globe Warms a new American soap opera in six parts
Written and Performed by Heather Woodbury | Directed by Michael Yawney
Endangered frogs, whirling dervishes, desperate scientists, and Evangelicals gone wild--all the inhabitants of Vane Springs, Nevada-- live out the soap opera of everyday life through the extraordinary headlines of our times.
The VORTEX proudly presents the World Premiere of OBIE Award and Spalding Gray Award winner Heather Woodbury’s astonishing new one-woman, million-species, comic epic that explores what it is like to survive in America today, on a planet edging toward climate crisis.
This new epic solo performance is presented in six evenings of theatre that can be enjoyed separately, but together form a complex, funny, and moving continuing saga.
As the Globe Warms follows Lorelei Ray, the home-schooled daughter of a Pentecostal preacher who finds herself mysteriously “speaking in the tongues” of endangered animals and sharing these possessions on-line with a growing following of Evangelical youth. When handsome herpetologist Reed Ferris arrives in her small town, determined to try to save the local “Butterscotch frog” from extinction, an unlikely friendship forms, creating far-reaching consequences for the people and creatures of Vane Springs, Nevada. In the mix are Tea Party zealots, closeted gay evangelicals, a working class family on the brink of extinction, and eyewitness reports from whales, polar bears, bees, bats and frogs.
Heather Woodbury is a theater artist known for her “highly addictive theatre” (Austin Chronicle) -- sprawling works that combine the seductions of cable TV serials with the high-wire immediacy of live, solo storytelling.
The VORTEX first presented her 8-act solo play What Ever: An American Odyssey nearly 15 years ago. Originally performed weekly in the back of a New York City bar, What Ever became a breakaway hit in Austin and went on to tour widely from Chicago’s Steppenwolf to London’s Royal Festival Hall. It was broadcast as a radio-play hosted by Ira Glass and received numerous awards including the Austin Critics’ Table Award for Outstanding Touring show. She has returned repeatedly to The VORTEX to perform for her one-woman feats for a growing “cult of hard-core devotees” (Austin Chronicle, 1997).
“I’m hooked.” – Michelle F. Solomon, Miami Art Zine, 2012
"The best new TV series might be a live, solo performance piece in a grungy part of Los Angeles." Option Magazine
Woodbury wrote As The Globe Warms in Los Angeles by performing a breakneck marathon of 33 weekly installments over 2010 and 2011. She performed for live audiences at alternative venues and then web-casting the soap opera for online subscribers who simultaneously funded her public development process well ahead of the KickStarter curve.
Now distilled into six evening-length parts with the help of Miami-based director Michael Yawney, the solo serial had a workshop run in Florida International University’s Alternative Theatre Festival this July. In August previewed one episode at Los Angeles’ New Original Works Festival in Disney Hall’s REDCAT theatre. This VORTEX production marks the world premiere of As the Globe Warms.
As timely in this election year as it is globally prescient – there’s even an episode featuring a convention for conservative Christian youth in Florida threatened by a hurricane! - As the Globe Warms fearlessly tackles the social complexities of climate crisis with humor while generating unexpected empathies: between rural and urban populations, atheists and devout Christians, the “world wide web” and world wide web of life.
Directed by Michael Yawney, Lighting Design by Gary Lund
This American Life’s Ira Glass calls Woodbury’s previous novel-length play "one of the greatest works you've never heard of" and Austin filmmaker Richard Linklater likens her multiple-character solo-performance sagas to "living inside a novel."
Woodbury’s novel-length plays have been published by Farrar, Straus & Giroux and Semiotext(e). Her 8-part solo play What Ever, originally performed in the back of a New York City bar in the East Village, toured widely from Chicago’s Steppenwolf to London’s Royal Festival Hall and was broadcast as a radio-play, hosted by Ira Glass. Her ensemble play Tale of 2 Cities: An American Joyride won an OBIE for performance; She has been awarded an NEA for Playwriting and was the first recipient of the Spalding Gray Award for “fearless theatrical innovators.” Other awards include the C.O.L.A. (City of LA) Award and LA Weekly’s Best Solo of the Year (1997).
A segment of As the Globe Warms will appear in the new anthology Animal Acts edited by Una Chaudhuri and Holly Hughes to be published by University of Michigan Press.
For more info visit: www.heatherwoodbury.com
For video visit: https://vimeo.com/channels/205232
recent press links: http://fiusm.com/2012/07/09/ambitious-production-to-close-of-theater-festival/