Angels in America
Direction: Gavin Canen Web
Composition: Mark Caspary
Scenic Design: David Philips
Lighting Design: Staciey O'hara
Sound Design: Matt Glenn
In this production of Angels in America, there was close collaboration between the composer and the sound designer, Matt Glenn, to conceptualize, create and then compose all original music for this piece. The production took place in January 2014 on the Robert Cohen Black Box Theater stage at the University of California Irvine. Part one of Tony Kushner's play, examines the lives of a diverse group of characters living in New York City during the Reagan-era AIDS crisis of the1980s. It explores the impact of AIDS and homosexuality on the relationships, which surround the affected individuals. The play has moments of stark realism and wild theatricality. The sound and original music were woven into the play as key elements to inform the audience about time, place and state of reality, while providing a cinematic style emotional commentary on the action. The inspiration for some of the sonic textures used in the music come from Vangelis and other early synthesizer pioneers of the 1980s.
Mr. Lies Theme
Mr. Lies is a sleazy travel agent that appears in many of Harper's drug induced hallucinations. This music accompanies him when he first appears to her.
In this production we use brass to symbolize Americana, the government's power, and characters associated with the government ie. Roy Cohn's influence. In this iteration of the theme the music has a softer side, when Joe is explaining about justice to Louise.
Harper escapes to an idealized reality in Antarctica with Mr. Lies. As Harper describes what she wants out of life, this composition plays. You will hear the transition from the streets of New York, as the prior scene slips away, to the beginning of snow fall in Antarctica.
The Penultimate Scene
The last few scenes of the show were entirely underscored starting with the romance between Joe and Louis. As the music continues the tambour shifts to take on a different light, continuing as Prior encounters the Angel.