Category

Happened

GRANDMA

By | Projects

GRANDMA was founded by Kate McGee, Peter Mills Weiss, and Tim Platt; in 2013 I joined as the fourth member (Julia Mounsey made five in 2015). Creating surreal and meticulous performance works drawing from the vocabulary of stand-up comedy, multi-level marketing schemes, TED talks, and ‘The Moth’-style storytelling, GRANDMA explored questions of family, friendship, identity, masculinity, and culture in the post-internet age.

Our work was developed and performed at Cloud City, Incubator Arts Project, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, CATCH performance series, PS122’s COIL Festival, Ars Nova’s ANT Fest, The Invisible Dog, Silent Barn, and LaMaMa ETC.

SATURDAY (2013) @ Incubator Arts Project

MAKE PEOPLE (pt 1) (2014) @ Ars Nova

MAKE PEOPLE (pts 1 & 2) (2015) @ LaMaMa ETC

Cloud City

By | Projects

One of the few community arts spaces still active in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, Cloud City was founded in 2012 by Liz Beeby, Nicki Ishmael, Andrew Lynch, Katie Melby, Jeff Seal, and myself.

First anniversary gala

From 2012 – 2015 I served as Producing Artistic Director of Cloud City; during that time I produced over 50 events, from concerts to art openings to comedy to immersive theater to film screenings to potlucks to burlesque to lectures. (And beyond.) I was also an artist in residence, taking part in the creation of a number of performances (Dream I Tell You, SATURDAY, Silent Film, Rise and Fall, among others). I created and curated a short form performance series, New skin for the old ceremony, that showcased the work of dozens of performance-based artists in dance, theatre, comedy, performance art, and music.

 

Cloud City lives on! Stop by if you’re in the neighborhood and tell them Ben says hi.

MAKE PEOPLE (parts 1 & 2)

By | Directing

It’s a show about doing you. And our need to consume, acquire, and destroy. There are also some fun surprises, and fresh beats.

MAKE PEOPLE pt 1

MAKE PEOPLE (parts 1 & 2) was presented by LaMaMa Experimental Theatre Club/s The Club October 23 through November 1st, 2015.

Previewed at Ars Nova’s ANT Fest in June 2015 and at CATCH performance series in October & December 2014 and at PS122’s COIL Festival in January 2015. Developed in part through the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council’s 2014 – 2015 Workspace Program.

Created by GRANDMA. GRANDMA = Ben Gansky, Mike McGee, Julia Mounsey, Tim Platt, and Peter Mills Weiss.

Bob & Dave & Ren

By | Directing, Interactive

A jumble of aesthetic theory, participation, and Dirty Dancing. With a few surprises along the way. 

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March 23 – 25, 2016 at Carnegie Mellon University’s Helen W. Rauh Studio Theater.

conceived, written, and directed by Ben Gansky

SATURDAY

By | Directing

Imagine a TED Conference scripted by Samuel Beckett tripping on mushrooms, performed by Reggie Watts. Now add soda. Relax!

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SATURDAY was created by GRANDMA.

GRANDMA is Ben Gansky, Mike McGee, Peter Mills Weiss, and Tim Platt.

SATURDAY performed November 22-24, 2013 at Incubator Arts Project.

LBJ’s Greatest Hits

By | Directing

LBJ’s Greatest Hits is the natural extension of one man’s real life obsession with the 36th President of the United States of America.

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Written by Taylor Ricco with additional text from Peter Mills Weiss and Ben Gansky 

Directed by Ben Gansky
 
Performed by Taylor Riccio and Jessy Lynn
 
Sound Design by Peter Mills Weiss
 
Lighting Design by Taylor Riccio
 
Video and Set by Ben Gansky
 
LBJ’s Greatest Hits performed at Incubator Arts Project February 28 – March 2, 2014. 
 
 

Dream I Tell You

By | Directing

Dream I Tell You

Dream I Tell You is a trance-theatre performance conceived by Ben Gansky that performed July 26th-August 4th  (Friday-Sunday) at Cloud City in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.  Inspired by hallucinatory experiences in Oaxaca, Mexico and Prague, Gansky  adapted the performance’s text from dream journals recorded by varied sources including the writers Georges Perec and Helene Cixous, the Swedish mystic Emanuel Swedenborg, and the late novels of Brazilian visionary Clarice Lispector.

 

Flickering through dream-narratives, Dream I Tell You explores and explodes archetypes of the unconscious in a psychedelic tone-poem. Audience members are offered milk and cookies at the bar before entering an immersive set and sound-scape. Images from dreams collide and bleed into each other, coalescing into dances and tableaus. Designed to create an experience of disorientation and hypnosis, Dream I Tell You is a trip.
 
 

 
 
Directed, conceived, designed, written, and produced Ben Gansky

Costume design Josh Allen

Live score composed and performed Andrew Lynch

Performed Josh Allen, Ernest Bentley, John Egan, Haley Houck, Katie Melby

 

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Silent Film

By | Directing, Interactive

Silent Film is a three-part interactive live-scored film-cum-site-specific-dance conceived with Eric Powell Holm, Katie Melby, John Egan, and Ben Lewis. It performed at Cloud City in April 2013.

Silent Film

direction from Eric Powell Holm

interaction design, writing, film editing, scenic and lighting elements by Ben Gansky

performed by Katie Melby and John Egan

costume design by Josh Allen

story consulting from Ben Lewis

live score composed and performed by Owen Weaver

Rise and Fall

By | Directing
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Rise and Fall is an adaptation of Brecht/Weill/Hauptmann’s opera Rise and Fall of the City of Mahagonny, with more blood, puke, weed, and beer.

It comes back around every so often to Cloud City. You should catch it when it does.

Direction Eric Powell Holm

Sound/lighting/set design Ben Gansky

Adaptation Ian Storey