Archive for 2014
We’re happy to announce a performance of Coffee: A Misunderstanding at GLS11. What is that, you ask?
A story that kind of looks like your typical “boy meets girl” story at first glance, except the boy doesn’t really feel like a boy and the girl doesn’t really feel like a girl.
A commentary on the weirdness of online friendships that aren’t really friendships, set in the midst of a fan convention called AwesomeCon.
A play where all the actors are audience members. Maybe one of them will be you?
A collaborative game of finding the best ending to the story. Or the worst ending. Or maybe just whatever’s the most satisfying. It’s really up to you. Anything can happen.
Coffee: A Misunderstanding is an interactive play created as part of Squinky Kiai’s MFA thesis work. The way the game works is that two audience volunteers are called up and asked to read from a mobile device, which dynamically displays dialogue lines and stage directions. Meanwhile, two additional audience volunteers are given a mobile device on which they can select from a menu of choices that appear at key decision points in the story. It’s a combination of multiplayer Choose Your Own Adventure and improv theatre, resulting in a play experience that’s every bit as awkward as the story it’s trying to tell.
Each year, the GLS Conference concludes on the beautiful Union Terrace overlooking the shores of Lake Mendota. It’s an afternoon and evening for ice cream, brats, and beer. This year will be extra special because the last day of the conference is Professor Kurt Squire’s birthday, and he and his band Crooked County take to the stage to play.
Crooked County‘s lineup is unusual, but it’s one that works for the band’s outlaw, rough-and-ready style. Rather than having just one drummer within its ranks, the group’s hard-driving sound is backed by a pair of them, and lead vocals are contributed by three members. Toby Purnell and Kurt Squire co-founded Crooked County in 1998 in Bloomington, IN. Purnell can be found on vocals, mandolin, and electric guitar, while Squire plays harmonica. The pair met earlier in the decade when they both played with the Indiana bands Big Mule, Preacher Preacher, and the Mary Janes. Drawing inspiration from Bill Monroe‘s bluegrass music and Willie Nelson’s country sound, they decided to strike out on their own as Crooked County. The band also includes Jason Purnell, Toby Purnell’s brother, on acoustic guitar. Merrie Sloan contributes vocals, bass, and guitar, while Josh Bennett adds vocals and bass. The dual drummers are Travis Olsson and Mark Minnick. Shortly after establishing Crooked County, Squire and Toby Purnell began working on Whiskey Burns, the group’s 1999 self-released debut. The album featured Jeff Farias on bass. Soon the band added Bennett, Jason Purnell, and Minnick for live gigs throughout the Midwest and Southwest. Farias moved on, settling in Phoenix, AZ, and eventually asking Crooked County to record for his company, Rustic Records. The label issued the band’s second release, Drunkard’s Lament. Like Toby Purnell and Squire, drummer Minnick also spent time in the Mary Janes. Toby Purnell also played previously with a group known as Ma and Pa Kegle, where he first met Sloan. Drummer Olsson devotes time to a punk group named the Opposition.
Check out their music on SoundCloud.
Registration for GLS 12 will open in early January. Stay tuned for more information!
Lodging & Accommodations
More information on lodging options will be available soon.