Finding a Home for Our Talents

The creative team at Whale of the People is excited to participate in the 2018 St Lou Fringe Festival. Here, members of the team talk about why Fringe is important to them and their art.

Augie Boyne, Curator/Composer:

Like many others, I have ideas that remain only that-- ideas-- only emerging when I explain them to friends, distant dreams never to be realized. My imagination was limited to artistic projects that I saw as “feasible,” leaving me to relish in my own comfort zone. It wasn’t until 4 months ago that I was pushed outside of the box of my perceived possibilities to explore the world outside. When my sister (and managing director) convinced me to put together this show, I had only an idea. As time has marched on, I have felt the world of this play grow in and outside of myself. During long sessions of composition, I watch the music shape the story, the universe it lives in, and vice versa. Relentlessly working to make deadlines makes me realize what it takes to accomplish a vision that once seemed impossible and greater appreciate the work others do to accomplish similar endeavors. Most of all, I learned that in order to do anything greater than myself, I need the help of people smarter than me. When we think of the invention of the light bulb, we envision Thomas Edison isolated in a lab, working tirelessly on his own. In reality, Edison had a team of thinkers constantly coming up with new ideas and improving upon Edison’s own inventions. I now know that making great art works the same way, and luckily there are plenty of smarter people to work with.

Lana Dvorak, Movement Director:

What brings me to fringe for this specific project is very exciting to me! I am passionate about the relationship between musicians and physical performers. I believe there is endless possibility for a shared artistic language regardless of medium and Whale of the People looks toward those possibilities with open arms using, combined musicians, dancers/movers, and curators. I am thrilled to be on “the other side of the table” with this project as movement director! Fringe welcomes all, myself included, to explore things we might not have explored before artistically and that is one of my favorite things about it. We get so stuck in the rhythm of what we “think” we should do and what we are capable of doing, but the more we stretch ourselves the more those widened comfort zones can leave room for beautiful creation! My passion for the physical body is deeply rooted and I am thrilled to be executing it on this project, surrounded by fellow passionate creatives. What brings me to the Fringe is my love for this art form, my love for all of the possibilities within this art form, and, possibly most importantly, curiosity, and all of the magic that word contains.

Madelyn Boyne, Managing Director:

As a returning participant of St Lou Fringe Fest, what brings me to Fringe, as always, is the incredible community of artists showcasing work I may not otherwise see. After performing with friends’ companies for the past two years, I was ready to venture out on my own. Though I had my own ideas ready for the stage, when my brother, Augie, told me he had a concept for a music- and movement-based, dialogue-free show, I said, “Take it to Fringe Fest. It’s perfect,” and opted instead to put my energies toward his new (admittedly more exhilarating) project. “I don’t know how to put a play together,” he said. “You worry about the music,” I told him, “I’ll worry about all the theatre stuff.” So this year, I am at Fringe as a facilitator of someone else’s vision, behind the scenes, rather than onstage. I’m stepping back as two brilliant artists, who I admire and trust, manifest their vision. I’m here for support, and to take care of anything outside of their purview--be it costumes, casting, coffee runs--so they can extract the magnificent artistic silhouettes from their minds and translate them into peculiar, arresting, tangible art.

Whale of the People is a multimedia artistic collaboration curated by Augie Boyne, a St Louis-based musician and composer. At a height of 6’3”, Augie has a larger range of vision than most humans. While this may seem advantageous, it mostly causes unfortunate regular headaches caused by unexpectedly low ceilings. When he isn’t nursing his noggin post-ceiling incident, Augie envisions creating vivid sensory experiences by combining other artistic mediums with his own. A recent push from family and colleagues prompted him to pursue this vision; hence, Whale of the People was born! Madelyn Boyne, a local theatre artist, is Whale of the People’s Managing Director and least cool of the Boyne siblings. She holds a B.A. in Theatre Arts from University of Missouri--St Louis, and works as Outreach & Education Manager for PRIME Theatre. Madelyn spends the bulk of her time writing, performing, and directing theatre, and splits the remainder between snuggling her two small dogs and avoiding shaving her legs (#feminism). Lana Dvorak is company Movement Director and a Texas transplant who now calls St Louis home. She once had an idea for a Waffle House road trip across America, but scrapped the plan when she became vegan and boring. Thankfully, she now eats meat occasionally, so things are looking up! #Wewhale are dedicated to promoting collaboration between experimental artists across multiple art forms, in order to create original art that tells stories in new ways. Perennial Growth is Whale of the People’s inaugural show. Inquiries:

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