SACRED FOOLS | CIRQUE PICNIQUE Special Return Engagement 2004!
Sacred Fools' Resident Artists, Tina Kronis & Richard Alger's
Theatre Movement Bazaar
in association with Sacred Fools

A Special Benefit Return Engagement of...


A physical theatre comedy.
Suggested by William Inge’s Picnic and other Cold War Texts.
Based on the original 2002 Sacred Fools production!

Created by Kronis & Alger
Directed by Tina Kronis

Featuring the original Sacred Fools cast!
Aldrich Allen, Shirley Anderson, Melina Bielefelt,
Aaron Francis, Crystal Keith, Corey Klemow,
Kelley Leathers, Julie A. Lockhart, Peter Mattsson,
David LM Mcintyre, Michelle Philippe, Pogo Saito & John Wuchte

Special Send Off Performances!
Sunday, May 23rd &
Monday, May 24th
@ 8pm
Admission: $15
Reservations: (310) 281-8337
Purchase Tickets Online Now!

“eclectic hybrid of wit and whimsy.” (LA Times) 
“Hypnotically beautiful!” (LA Weekly).

Presided over by the amazing
Bid on a cornucopia of exotic cakes, including
Lady Baltimore Cake, Cranberry Coffee Cake,
Chocolate Cake with Strawberry Filling,
1-2-3 Birthday cake and Cheesecake!

Click here for the Video Preview from
the original Sacred Fools production!

3 plays by Theatre Movement Bazaar
text & images from
Cirque Picnique
& Strange Beliefs.

Theatre Movement Bazaar in association with the Sacred Fools Theatre Company has been invited to take CIRQUE PICNIQUE  to the Piccolo Spoleto Festival in Charleston, SC, and will be there May 29-June 6.

Proceed from this special engagement in Los Angeles
will go towards funding this event. 

Theatre Movement Bazaar has assembled the original cast of CIRQUE PICNIQUE. These performers along with friends of TMB (affectionately called the “Bazaarness Group”) have done everything from garage sales to gala performances during the past 9 months in a grassroots fundraising campaign to bring CIRQUE PICNIQUE to Charleston.

Tina Kronis and Richard Alger have collaborated for eight years to create challenging, visually exciting works of theatre that blend a comprehension of classical themes with commanding physicality.  They have directed and performed internationally, including work with the Swiss mime/mask/theatre company, Mummenschanz, and are now based in Los Angeles.  They have created and produced seven original works in LA, including last summers STRANGE BELIEFS.  TMB is a grant recipient of the 2003 Rockefeller Foundation MAP Fund.

Tickets are limited for this unique Special Event! So reserve now!

For more info on the effort, click here.


Charleston City Paper

Paranoia of Suburbia
Cirque Picnique mines the dark world of 1950s America

In the bitter months following September 11, 2001, artists around the world took up their paintbrushes, typewriters, microphones, and cameras to flood the world with burning passion, politics, and emotion as a cry out against the damage that had been done.

For Los Angeles’ Theatre Movement Bazaar (TMB), their outlet was to create Cirque Picnique, a performance art piece that conjures up a swirl of paranoia, dark humor, and Betty Crocker. First performed in 2002, the production weaves dance theatre, performance art, living text, and Cold War ethos into an original performance hailed not only for its ingenuity, but also for its subtle jabs at the historical undercurrents of American culture and behavior.

Tina Kronis and Richard Alger, the directors and creators of Cirque Picnique, have a history of carefully crafting mixed-media theatre pieces that explore the subterranean stirrings of human nature. The duo formed TMB in New York, and took their fledgling company out West in 1999. With a wealth of experience in writing (Alger), mime, dance, and mask theatre (Kronis), the pair set out to weave a multi-textural fabric with each piece borne of their imagination. The company has brought to life eight original productions, with a ninth (Dry Cleaning) on the way.

“I have sort of an eclectic background and that is reflected in the work that we create,” explains Kronis in between rehearsals of Cirque Picnique in Los Angeles. “Initially, my work was more toward the non-spoken and the dance, and now it is mixing in text and working with actors, rather than strictly with dancers or mimes.”

These varied elements combust into the spectacle that is Cirque Picnique. The multifaceted production garnered rave reviews from both the L.A. Weekly and the L.A. Times, earning it not only an extended run at its home theatre but also two nominations in the prestigious L.A. Weekly Theatre Awards.

Unlike traditional theatre, Cirque Picnique is not structural or rigid, instead relying on unusual — often exaggerated and comical — images and movements to invoke a dark circus-like atmosphere. That fantastic aura, combined with inspiration from William Inge’s Picnic and the power of other texts drawn from the crazed fear of the American 1950s, pulls together one very unusual piece of theatre.

Central to the production are the concepts of paranoia and subtle subversion. Feeding off obsessive cultural fears from the Cold War blacklists right up to the doorstep of our current color-coded state of life in America, Cirque Picnique provides social commentary cloaked in humor and movement.

“It’s amazing, when we created this piece it was post 9/11 and the threat of war was in the air … and now we’re at war again,” muses Kronis. “This idea of threat and paranoia that was around during the McCarthy era, it’s sort of still here and it just has a different name. It’s a very human theme.”

The tone of Cirque Picnique toys around with these concepts and relies heavily on language, although rarely spoken in a traditional sense. Instead, a mélange of Cold War-era texts insert themselves into the action, shaping up yet another dimension in this multifaceted production.

“What interests me is what’s underneath all of the words,” explains Kronis of TMB’s approach. “That’s what inspires all of the physical score or the physical text that is created during the rehearsal process with the actors. It’s sort of an archaeological dig with the texts … I guess you could say we kind of flesh it out in a physical fashion.”

Kronis and Alger aren’t content to have the audience merely observing all of this organized chaos; they hope the audience will get swept up in the flow. “Everyone comes away with something different — we like to leave it loose enough so that you’re part of the process and the conclusion cannot be made until you see it … your creative self gets engaged.”

The Piccolo Spoleto debut of Cirque Picnique and the theatre company itself has been a hard-earned effort. When approached with the idea of coming to Charleston for the event, Kronis and Alger were intrigued by not only the city, but also the promise of a true fringe festival.

In fact, the duo was so enamored with the very idea of Piccolo that they immediately dove into a fundraising effort to bring their cast of 13 with them to the Lowcountry. The company hosted garage sales, wrapped presents during the holiday rush, collected coin donations (“Pennies for Piccolo,” they called it), and staged several runs of a made-for-fundraising original production (Hollywood Macabre) so that the group would be able to cross the country later this month.

While it may seem like a truckload of work to bring the unique Cirque Picnique to Piccolo, Kronis knows that in the end, it will be worth it — for them, and for the audience. She produces a verbal shrug and says, “That’s the state of the arts, I guess, in America. You have to do whatever you can to make it happen.”

-- Shawnté Salabert
Charleston City Paper