September 25 through October 3


Now in its 12th year, the Lit Moon Theatre Company is recognized both here and abroad for its adventurous, highly physicalized stagings of classic novels and plays. Writing about the company's production of Hamlet, seen at the Montreal's Wildside Festival in January 2004, Montreal Gazette theater critic Matt Radz, writes, "the company's style, melding the rigors of physical theater with classic text, makes them pioneers, if not unique." Fresh on the heels of its sold-out, standing-room-only performances of Hamlet at the 8th Shakespearean Festival in Gdansk, Poland, the company returns home to Santa Barbara as part of the 2004 Lit Moon World Theater Festival. Founded in 1998, the festival has offered, in the words of Santa Barbara Independent critic D. J. Palladino, "an unrelenting window into the world of theatrical possibility."

This year's festival will be no different, and will feature visionary, boundary-testing examples of contemporary physical theater and multi-media performance art. This year's festival plays September 25th ­ October 3rd at a variety of Santa Barbara venues, including the Center Stage Theater, Muddy Waters café, and the campus of Westmont College. It features work by Lit Moon; the famed Russian company DO-Theatre, St. Petersburg, whose inimitable brand of dance-theater played to sold-out audiences at both the 2000 and 2001 Lit Moon festivals; the movement eccentricities of local mime James Donlon; and New York performance artist Eve Beglarian, teamed with the Robin Cox Ensemble, and San Francisco pianist Sarah Cahill.

This year's festival features some of the most talented, charismatic performers working in the world today, and is the product of a partnership between Lit Moon Theatre, Iridian Arts, and Westmont College. "The artists assembled here create theater that is primarily physical and visual in orientation, rather than literary and psychological," says Lit Moon director John Blondell. "This type of theater is poetic and visionary in nature, is out to transcend the here and now rather than simply reflect it, and definitively shows that theater is more than simply a lively extension of literature."

Here's the lineup--in order of appearance.

Birds Eye View
DO-Theatre, St. Petersburg
They're back!! Founded in 1987 as an experimental, physical theater company, DO-Theatre, St. Petersburg is considered one of the most influential groups to have come out of post-communist Russia. The company pioneered a style of physical theater and created a dance language known as Russian Modernism, which is physically rigorous, yet infused with poetic tension. Since the early 1990's, DO-Theatre has carved out a unique place in European theater with pieces such as Hopeless Games, Upside Down, and now Bird's Eye View that consistently play to enthusiastic audiences at festivals throughout the world. A favorite at both the 2000 and 2001 Lit Moon festivals, DO-Theatre is back with their inimitable brand of visual theater. "Combining music, film footage and lots and lots of feathers with the company's stock-in-trade dance, acrobatics, and visual theater, Birds Eye View imagines a surreal world in the air, celebrating flight in all its shapes and forms." Andrew Richardson, "Edinburgh Metro." Directed by Evgeny Kozlov. Presented by Westmont College.
September 25 at 7:00, October 1 at 9:00, and October 2 at 7:00, Center Stage Theater, 751 Paseo Nuevo, Santa Barbara

Pandora's Box
Assembled Artists
Pandora's Box
assembles artists from this year's festival in the intimate confines of Muddy Waters café at 508 East Haley Street. Featuring DO-Theatre, James Donlon, Marc Shaw, and other local artists, this one-time only event is a compilation of new and developing work by local and invited artists, woven in and through the site-specific confines of this favorite Santa Barbara café and hang-out.
September 26 at 7:00, Muddy Waters Café, 508 East Haley, Santa Barbara

Tartuffe, by Moliere
Lit Moon Theatre Company, Santa Barbara

In a re-imagined version of last year's festival entry, a religious hypocrite insinuates himself into the household of a wealthy merchant, causing domestic chaos. Features the Independent Award-winning scenography of Milon Kalis, the mask-making skills of Lesley Finlayson, an ingenious lighting design by Michael Pearce, and original music by James Connolly. Stars Peter John Duda, Victoria Finlayson (Independent Award for her performances as Elmire and Marianne), Stanley Hoffman, and Casey Wells. Directed by John Blondell. "The result, as we've come to expect from this brainy gang of clowns, is lofty, vaguely confusing, yet satisfying as a fun walk through a hall of hypocritical mirrors." D. J. Palladino, Santa Barbara Independent.
September 25 at 9:00, September 28 at 8:00, September 29 at 8:00, September 30 @ 9:00, October 2 @ 4:00, Center Stage Theater

James Donlon, Santa Barbara
James Donlon has performed his original work to critical acclaim throughout the United States, Mexico, Canada, Ireland, Scotland, Switzerland, Italy, France, Romania, the Czech Republic, and Turkey since 1970. He is considered one of the world's masters of movement theater, and an internationally known master teacher of movement and performance for actors. Since 1970, Donlon has been on the faculty of the Yale School of Drama, the American Conservatory Theatre, the North Carolina School of the Arts, and University of California Santa Barbara, among others. The New York Times says that Donlon's show displays "an extraordinary blend of skill and lunacy."
September 30 at 7:00 and October 2 at 9:00, Center Stage Theater

Songs from a Book of Days
Eve Beglarian, NYC, with the Robin Cox Ensemble, Santa Barbara, and Sarah Cahill, San Francisco
Beglarian's multi-media exploration pays homage to spiritual traditions from across the world through scriptural texts and the writings of Eileen Myles, Robert Pinsky, Donald Barthelme, Ovid, Czeslaw Milosz, Pascal, Janet Lewis, and Stephen King. Beglarian says, "Several years ago I began collecting texts for a contemporary commonplace book. I wanted to create a book of days, modeled on the medieval idea. I began making a collection of found thoughts that please me, texts that seem important to return to again and again for mulling over, for meditation." Beglarian's eclectic and genre-defying works have been performed by Bang on the Can All-Stars, the California EAR Unit, the Paul Dresher Ensemble, Mabou Mines, Lincoln Center Theater Festival, Twisted Tutu, and the China National Beijing Opera. She has been described as "one of new music's truly free spirits" by the "Village Voice" and a "remarkable experiementalist" by the "New York Times." Performing with Beglarian will be Santa Barbara's Robin Cox Ensemble, nominated by the LA Weekly as Best Classical Ensemble/Artist of the Year in 2003, and pianist Sarah Cahill, a legendary figure form the wilder side of the San Francisco music scene who the "Village Voice" has described as "passionately mercurial," and "athletically graceful." Presented by Iridian Arts.
October 1 at 7:00, Center Stage Theater

DO-Theatre St. Petersburg, with Theatre Arts students from Westmont College.
Using the absurd, topsy turvy nonsense literature of Daniil Kharms and Edward Lear, this is a culmination of DO-Theatre's residency with students from Westmont College. Don't miss this unique opportunity to see emerging work of young artists, inspired by the loopy eccentricities of the DO-Theatre artists.
October 3 at 4:00, Westmont College

The festival plays at three different venues: Center Stage Theater, Muddy Waters 508 East Haley, and Westmont College. Tickets range from $10-$15, except the festival grand finale at Westmont, which is free to the public.

Lit Moon Theatre Company:


Date Time Show / Artist Venue
Sat, September 25 7:00 P.M. Birds Eye View
9:00 P.M. Tartuffe
Lit Moon Theatere
Sun, September 26 7:00 P.M. Pandora's Box
Assembled Artists
Muddy Waters
Tues, September 28 8:00 P.M. Tartuffe CST
Wed, September 29 8:00 P.M. Tartuffe CST
Thurs, September 30 7:00 P.M. Mimeworks
James Donlon
9:00 P.M. Tartuffe CST
Fri, October 1 7:00 P.M. Songs from a Book of Days
Beglarian, Cox & Cahill
9:00 P.M. Birds Eye View CST
Sat, October 2 4:00 P.M. Tartuffe CST
7:00 P.M. Birds Eye View CST
9:00 P.M. Mimeworks CST
Sun, October 3 4:00 P.M. Nonsense Westmont


TIMES: September 25 through October 3. See sechedule above.
$10 - $15 per performance. Grand Finale October 3 at Westmont College: free!

Click here for complete listing
Online purchases subject to $1 surcharge

The Center Stage Theater Box Office is open Wednesday through Saturday from noon to 5:00 P.M., and one hour before each performance. See below for location.

Tickets may also be purchased by telephone using Visa, Master Card, and American Express. Phone (805) 963-0408 (V / TDD).

Center Stage Theater is located in the Paseo Nuevo Center, upstairs at the intersection of Chapala and De la Guerra Streets, Santa Barbara, California.

Take Highway 101 to Carrillo Street, exit and turn toward the mountains (northbound turns right, southbound turns left). Proceed to Chapala Street (fourth light) and turn right. Proceed 1-1/2 blocks and turn left into either of two entrances to Paseo Nuevo. Park near the elevator, or proceed to roof-level parking.