Presented by Umbrella Collective
Conceived by Alana Horton
Co-Created by Megan Clark and Alana Horton, with Umbrella Collective and the ensemble
Thursday, April 18, 2019
7:00 pm / Doors open at 6:00pm
Tickets: $5-$20 sliding scale in $5 increments
Umbrella Collective’s final show in their twelfth season, VELVET SWING, tells the true story of Evelyn Nesbit, the original 19th Century supermodel and leading lady of the “Crime of The Century!" Imagine: your favorite true crime podcast meets a wild vaudevillian circus with a pinch of postmodern narratives. Expect daring feats of self discovery, compelling choices in complex circumstances, delightful musical accompaniment, multiple narratives, and one very large snake named Baby. Watch as our actors attempt to answer the complicated question of just how to tell the story of a life when that story has become larger than life!
VELVET SWING explores the life of Evelyn Nesbit, an artists’ model, chorus girl and actress who became famous in the early 20th century. She received worldwide attention when her husband, Harry Thaw shot and killed Nesbit’s former patron, Stanford White, a prominent architect and New York socialite in front of hundreds of witnesses. The nature of Nesbit and White’s relationship became key evidence in the murder trial to follow.
While we’ve come a long way since the early twentieth century when the issue of Evelyn Nesbit’s virginity was the centerpiece of a public trial, we still see womxn bodies being used for political agendas, regulated by legislation, and harassed in public and private spaces. We are led to believe that womxn stories told without agency and dimension in the mainstream media are representative and complete portrayals of real life. VELVET SWING highlights the complexities of Evelyn Nesbit’s circumstances and decisions by telling multiple versions of her life that highlights its humanity, dimensionality, and the contradictions.
Content note: This production deals with topics of violence, consent, sexual assault, alcohol, and trauma. It also contains humor, agency, and rad womxn. VELVET SWING is based on Umbrella Collective’s August 2017 workshop presentation. Order a drink, tip your server, and get ready to take a ride of a lifetime!
Story Designers . . . Megan Clark & Alana Horton
Stage Manager . . . Jenny Moeller
Sound Collaborator . . . Michelle Hernick
Costume & Props Designer . . . Josie Everett
Producer . . . Hannah K. Holman
April 26, 2019 with Shelly Lehner and Erin Gardner
This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.