Announcing our 21st season on the Amherst College campus in Amherst, Massachusetts, USA
lk "an irreverent & intergenerational look at AGE & AGING"
Each year KoFest is curated on a theme, and this year we’re investigating aging, a process that evokes a gamut of feelings – from trepidation to celebration. Come join us for a multiplicity of takes on a subject that, that sooner or later, affects us all.
Our 5 weeks of performances and special events make up a season of high theatricality by a cadre of celebrated artists who join us from San Francisco; NYC; New Jersey; Portland, OR; Putney, VT/El Salvador – & right here in Amherst, MA. These folks have a lot of tricks up their sleeves – including puppetry, juggling, outrageous humor and images of uncanny beauty.
Each performance is accompanied by lobby displays that contextualize the work and by lively post-performance discussions that are a springboard for inter-audience/artist exchange and civic dialogue. The post-shows are hosted by Kermit Dunkelberg who will be joined by experts in related fields. There is an amazing level of engagement at these events. After all, it’s not just a coincidence that this festival takes place in Amherst, famous as the town "where only the “H” is silent.".
Please note that to ensure that the consideration of our theme is intergenerational, the Sunday afternoon post-shows will be co-hosted by youth from the Performance Project's Springfield-based "First Generation Ensemble." We are still lining up our post-show panelists, so we invite you to e-mail us if you have a particular area of expertise that you think might be relevant to one of these shows.
July 6 – 8, Friday & Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 4 p.m.
IS SEX POSSIBLE?
Constance Congdon (Amherst, MA)
Nationally-renowned playwright, and Amherst resident Constance Congdon in her outrageously irreverent solo about the trials and tribulations of sex and dating after you reach 50, 60, … (Read more…)
For adult audiences.
LECTURE/FORUM Sunday July 8 at 7:30 p.m.
STAYING VERTICAL: Age, Aging & Ageism in America
ASHTON APPLEWHITE (NYC)
Author/journalist Ashton Applewhite is interested in why we’re so ambivalent about the prospect of much longer lives. She was too, until she learned more. Her proposition? Fight ageism, not aging. (Read more…)
A lecture with spirited discussion to follow. Admission is by donation.
July 13 – 15, Friday & Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 4 p.m.
A QUEER DIVINE
SARA FELDER (San Francisco)
Back at Ko by popular demand, America’s favorite queer juggling diva & solo performance artist returns to Ko with a new comedy.
It’s a reflection on the facts of her existence: She can’t dance. She likes art. And people she loves are going to die. (Read more…)
SPECIAL EVENT: July 15, ONE NIGHT ONLY! Sunday at 8 p.m.
COMMUNICATIONS FROM A COCKROACH: Archie & the Underside
The Mettawee River Theatre Company (NYC/Salem, NY)
Based on the charming Archy (a cockroach poet) & Mehitabel (an alley cat) cartoons by Don Marquis from the 1920's and 30's. Performed out under the stars with live music, movement and exquisite puppets in an atmosphere of magic and celebration.
An all-ages event on the Amherst College Observatory Lawn off of Snell St. Tickets $8 Adults / $6 Children under 12. Site opens at 6 p.pm for picnic-ing. Bring blankets & lawn chairs. Rain Space: Amherst's Holden Theater (Read more…)
July 20 – 22, Friday & Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 4 p.m.
“GOOD MORNING ANITA HILL . . .”
DEB MARGOLIN (NJ)
Click here to see the full title of this show – it’s the full text of a voicemail Clarence Thomas’ wife recently left for Anita Hill 20 years after her testimony at the confirmation hearings that brought her to national attention for her allegations of sexual harassment, and it may win a Guinness Record for longest play title.
Deb Margolin's (co-founder of the legendary Split Britches feminist theater company) in her long awaited return to solo performance – and to Ko. (Read more…)
SPECIAL EVENT: July 22 at 8 p.m.
KoFest STORY SLAM & PARTY
co-hosted by Ko festival Artistic Director/Sabrina Hamilton & the Performance Projects "First Generation Ensemble" youth (Springfield, MA)
You've heard of poetry slams – a competitive poetry events? We this is the story-telling equivalent. It's for first person, true stories – told live & without notes. All stories are 5 minutes or less & all ages invited but al stories must relate in some way to our season theme of Age & Aging.
A huge hit last summer, you made us promise to bring this event back, and we have! There will be some ringers, but visit our website to learn how you may be able to participate.
Feeling a bit unsure? We’re offering free, private storytelling coaching sessions from Ko Festival artists! All tickets $12. Cash Bar &
amp; Prizes! (Read more…)
July 27 – 29, Friday & Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 4 p.m.
MY MIND IS LIKE AN OPEN MEADOW
Hand2Mouth Ensemble (Portland, OR)
Based on the recorded memoirs of ensemble member Erin Leddy’s grandmother, this meditation on consciousness, memory & things passed down through generations has toured the west coast extensively, & comes to Ko right before its NYC premiere. A younger point of view on our season theme. (Read more…)
August 3 – 5, Friday & Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 4 p.m.
D-GENERATION: An Exaltation of Larks
SANDGLASS THEATER (Putney, VT)
The world premiere of the ensemble’s collaboration with Salvadoran director Roberto Salomon. With text gathered from nursing home residents using a collective creation process called “Timeslips,” the production is performed with live actors, puppets, video and music.
It is a piece about dementia. It is also a piece about play, joy, and communication. (Read more…)
"PASSES & POSSES"
Once again we will be offering a SEASON PASS. It's your opportunity to see it all and save! Can't make all our dates? Bring a "POSSE" of 6 or more to any one of our events, and your "entourage" will save even more! (Read more…)
Season Passes, Posse Tix & Individual Tickets are now on sale!
The Box Office opens July 2: (413) 542-3750.
But you don't have to wait. You can also purchase tickets with a credit card via our website. Just click on the Buy Tickets link on the navigation bar toward the top of our homepage.
OR, you can reserve your tickets by e-mail. All we need is the name of the event, date, number of tix, type (adult/student/senior) and contact info. We'll make sure to confirm by return email and you can simply pay for you tickets at the door. (Cash or checks only at the door please.)
For further information before July 2, call (413) 427-6147. Unless noted, all performances take place in Amherst, MA, in Amherst College’s air-conditioned Holden Theater, Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m., Sunday at 4 p.m. Adult tickets $20 / Students & Seniors $16. Call about a very limited number of special $8 tix.
At this point, we still have a few spots left in each of our workshops.
July 9 -14
BODY WISDOM: Discovering the Inner Landscape a movement workshop with performer/director educator Naoko Maeshiba. Click HERE for more info
July 16 – 21
CREATING SOLO PERFORMANCE with acclaimed solo theater artist and juggling diva Sara Felder. Click HERE for more info.
July 23 – 28
MIND THE GAP: A Playwright's Connection to the Empty Space with playwright/director, Fulbright Fellow & Tibetan Bon Buddhism Practitioner Juanita Rockwell. Click HERE for more info.
Past participants have ranged in age from 18 to 80, and have come from a wide variety of levels of experience.
For more information or to download a registration form visit the WWW.KOFEST.COM
OTHER COOL STUFF
After last year's successful inaugural offering we are once again providing festival-goers with an opportunity to deepen their experience of the Festival & their understanding of contemporary theater by by taking the Ko Festival as a UMASS summer course taught by Ko's post-show discussion leader, Kermit Dunkelberg. See the bottom of the Ko homepage for more on this.
Kali Quinn, who brought you last summer's OVERTURE TO A THURSDAY MORNING will be back to create another interactive installation piece on our season theme with participation by community residents – and perhaps by you!
For more info visit www.kofest.com