Rep Stage and Howard Community College Music Department Present Multilingual Music Theatre Work, “The Suitcase/Der Koffer”
Columbia, MD – Rep Stage, the professional regional theatre in residence at Howard Community College (HCC), has partnered with the HCC Music Department for a special, one-night-only performance of a multilingual music theatre work, “The Suitcase/Der Koffer,” on Friday, October 18 at 7:30 p.m. This event is an exploration of instability, cultural roots, and life sometimes in between.
When composer Ljiljana Jovanović left her home in Belgrade to study music in Germany, with her father’s suitcase in hand, she never imagined a journey through eight countries on three continents, as her country fragmented and neighbors became enemies. Twenty-seven years later, an unprecedented 70 million people have been forced from their homes worldwide – over half of them children. This work seeks connections among the journeys of those losing, finding, and reinventing what “home” might mean.
Neither concert, nor opera, nor play, nor performance art, “The Suitcase/Der Koffer” is influenced by all these forms, as three performers present objects, documents, events, and images from the lives of the displaced, real, and imagined. The composition includes sung and spoken text, improvisation and sound exploration through prepared alto sax and extended piano techniques, and the live performance is layered with prerecorded sound material, including the voices of children in many languages, bringing us fragments of other stories, other suitcases.
Jovanović’s New Music Theatre projects, chamber music, texts, site-specific soundscapes, installations and sound designs have been performed and recorded throughout Europe, Canada and the US. Juanita Rockwell, writer and director of over one hundred plays, operas and multidisciplinary performance projects on five continents, was founding director of Towson University’s experimentally-focused MFA in Theatre Program.
Free and open to the public, “The Suitcase/Der Koffer” will take place in the Monteabaro Recital Hall, located in the Horowitz Visual and Performing Arts Center on the campus of HCC, 10901 Little Patuxent Parkway, Columbia, Maryland. No tickets are needed for this event. For additional information, call the box office at 443-518-1500.
- Chris Roberts, soprano
- Duo Crveno, alto sax and piano
- Allison Campbell, scenography and puppets
- Concept and Music by Ljiljana Jovanović
- Direction and Text by Juanita Rockwell