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Experimental play explores all kinds of loss

Song of the Dodo comes to Pacific Dec. 3


by: PHOTO COURTESY OF GARY NORMAN - Portland Experimental Theatre Ensemble will take an unusual approach to explore themes of loss when it appears at Pacific University Tuesday, Dec. 3.Death, grief and mass extinction get an unusual treatment as Pacific University welcomes the Portland Experimental Theatre Ensemble back for the 2013 Benjamin and Elaine Whiteley Distinguised Lecture.

Following an award-winning production of “R3” last January, the experimental group presents its newest collaborative production, “Song of the Dodo,” at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 3, in the Tom Miles Theatre, 2115 Pacific. Ave. in Forest Grove.

As a three-act play, “Song of the Dodo” adopts the structure of traditional Greek tragedy to explore the personal relationship with death and loss as it relates to larger patterns of mass extinction and environmental destruction. by: PHOTO COURTESY OF TIM SUMMERS - A 75-minute performance of Song of the Dodo will be followed by a brief discussion of the play and its themes.

Drawing on ancient and modern writings, “Dodo” sits inside the gap between how we talk about death and how we feel about it: grief disguised as rage, pathos diluted to politeness.

“Dodo” is a shriek of lamentation tucked inside a clown show, an examination of the many little (and big) extinctions, personal and global, that people ignore every day. 

Under the direction of Jacob Coleman, the ensemble uses dance, extended voice, lamentation, contemporary design techniques and original music to spark emotions, mystery and understanding. 

by: PHOTO COURTESY OF TIM SUMMERS - A 75-minute performance of Song of the Dodo will be followed by a brief discussion of the play and its themes.The 75-minute performance will be followed by a reception and a brief conversation with the artists and Pacific faculty. 

The production is presented by Pacific’s School of Arts & Humanities and is made possible by the generous support of the Whiteleys.

Admission is free, but tickets are required and available at the door on a first-come, first-served basis. 



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