The Catastrophic Theatre, Houston’s leading experimental theatre company and long-time UH School of Theatre & Dance (SoTD) collaborator, turns 25 this fall.
To celebrate the milestone anniversary, UH Libraries are inducting The Catastrophic Theatre’s archives into the Special Collections. The public is invited to join the party on September 8 from 5 – 8 p.m. at “Get Loud in the Library” in the MD Anderson Library’s Elizabeth D. Rockwell Pavilion. The event will chronicle the theatre’s storied history from its early days under the moniker Infernal Bridegroom Productions to its current role as a local mainstay of cutting edge performing arts.
“We are honored to be one of only four theatre companies whose archives are housed in the Special Collections at the University of Houston Libraries,” says Catastrophic’s Associate Director Tamarie Cooper. “The University has had a constant presence and strong influence throughout our history, and the induction of our archives is the perfect way to commemorate 25 years of bold theatre-making in Houston.”
UH’s ties to the company go back to the beginning. Several UH theatre alumni were among the group of artists who launched the company in the early 90s, UH students and alumni continue to intern and study under Catastrophic artists, and the SoTD has collaborated on numerous productions and special events over the years, including the world premiere of Donald Barthelme’s “Snow White” for CounterCurrent17 and a Surrealism Seminar presented in conjunction with Chana Porter’s world premiere of “Leap and the Net Will Appear” last season. Porter also taught a playwriting masterclass at UH as a guest artist.
Rob Shimko, director of the SoTD, describes Catastrophic as “a real gem among Houston theatre companies,” and says the University has been fortunate to collaborate with them on several projects over the years. “These are just a few examples among many of the fruitful connections we’ve developed between Catastrophic and UH.”
And there’s more ahead.
This season, the SoTD is thrilled to partner with Catastrophic to present Will Eno’s groundbreaking existential play “Wakey, Wakey” in the Quintero Theatre. The show, described as “glowingly dark” and “profoundly moving” by the New York Times, will run from January 24 – February 3, 2019.