By Nick Payne
Directed by Liz Fisher
"I wanted to see it twice. I needed to see it twice. And it's been so much on my mind that last night in my sleep I worked for a long time on the wording for a review, only to have those decisive phrases dissolve when I roused fitfully in the darkness of the small hours... Ryan Hamilton creates (Roland) as a diffident, sensitive personality; Carll's Marianne is forceful and yet tangled in complex feelings... The precision of the actors is both verbal and physical, a sustained accomplishment that brings into reality the concept of alternate universes... Street Corner Arts provides in this short but moving evening a portrait of a relationship and a meditation on mortality. The script's allusions to science, especially to quantum physics, come from Marianne -- brief, relevant and dealing with the unknowable, and thank God without a whisper of Shrödinger's cat... Katherine Catmull wrote yesterday that Constellations 'just went straight into my heart like a sweet pointy dart last night."'Playwright Payne and director Liz Fisher open up Marianne and Roland to one another, and as a result they expose our hearts as well."
Michael Meigs, CTX Live Theatre
"Stephanie Carll and Ryan Hamilton masterfully inhabit their roles as Marianne and Roland. They display searing focus and the ability to stay in the moment as they gracefully switch from one reality to the next. The pair's natural ease and chemistry make the events of the production feel less like a performance and more like a series of open, honest conversations. Carll radiates warmth from the stage and finds genuine moments of humour in the most unexpected places in her character's sobering journey. Hamilton is able to give more honest responses in one sentence of dialogue than most actors can give in an entire performance. Watching him deliver the same sentence several times over, each time under different circumstances makes his portrayal all the more impressive and heartbreaking... CONSTELLATIONS is an exhilarating gift for the mind and senses. Street Corner Arts has created a master class in not only acting and directing, but producing a well-rounded piece of theatre that deserves every ounce of praise it is likely to receive. This brief but touching story should be added to every theatre lover's must-see list." (Entire Review)
Lacey Cannon Gonzales, BroadwayWorld.com
at hyde park theatre
One relationship. Infinite possibilities. In the beginning Marianne and Roland meet at a party. They go for a drink, or perhaps they don't. They fall madly in love and start dating, but eventually they break up. After a chance encounter in a supermarket they get back together, or maybe they run into each other and Marianne reveals that she's now engaged to someone else and that's that. Or perhaps Roland is engaged. Maybe they get married, or maybe their time together will be tragically short.Nick Payne's Constellations is a play about free will and friendship; it's also about quantum multiverse theory, love, and honey.
I wanted to write something that could only work in a theatre so I deliberately chose to write for just two people and write something that doesn’t need a set or lights or anything like that. You could do it in a village hall. Just two actors and an audience. The brilliance of doing something like that is asking the audience to actively imagine everything that is not here.
Nick Payne's plays include If There Is I Haven't Found It Yet (Bush), One Day When We Were Young (Paines Plough), Lay Down Your Cross (Hampstead), Wanderlust and Constellations (Royal (Royal Court). He was awarded the 2009 George Devine Award for Most Promising Playwright and was the 2010 Pearson Playwright-in-Residence at the Bush Theatre.
It’s more about imagining everything you have done and never done existing in a parallel universe. As the play jumps between universes, you see a slightly modified versions of the different stages of the one relationship.
It’s I think it’s also very cruel, because we get to experience only one universe. In a way, Constellations is me falling in and out of love
with the wonder of the science. And I suppose it’s also about death, which is something I didn’t say at the time because I imagine it wouldn’t have sold many tickets.
Cast & Creative
Stephanie Carll (Marianne) | Steph loves to facilitate theatrical experiences, usually via the Present Company tribe. Recent directing credits include Hamlet, Picasso at the Lapin Agile, and Love's Labour's Lost. She is the happiest girl in the multiverse to return to the stage as a make-believer with this, her first Street Corner Arts show. When she's not making theatre, she dances with magic monkeys, dreams of getting lost in strange places, and likes to get dirty and then clean up real nice. She is grateful that you have chosen to Be Here Now. Follow the adventures at www.PresentCompanyTheatre.com.
Ryan Hamilton (Roland) | Ryan is excited to be a part of his first Street Corner Arts production. He's been doing theatre in Austin for about 7 years now. Recent productions include Cock and Picasso At The Lapin Agile. He loves you :)
Liz Fisher is an interdisciplinary theater artist based in Austin. For the past fourteen years, she has worked as an actor, director, writer, and producer with some of Austin’s most lauded companies. She is an award winning actress, with multiple nominations for B. Iden Payne and Austin Critics’ Table awards. As an award winning playwright, she has been invited to residencies across the country to develop new plays that focus on transmedia storytelling. Liz’s directing work centers on new plays and exciting reimaginings of classic texts. She is an Associate Member of SDC and recently won the National SDC Directing Award, in conjunction with the Kennedy Center, which also garnered her a fellowship to the Eugene O’Neill Theater Center. Liz has presented at SXSW Interactive and academic conferences on her work in blending technology and theater and was a visiting guest artist for Southwestern University’s Sarofim School of Fine Arts. In addition to her artistic accomplishments, Liz is also a successful arts manager who has run arts incubators, produced five play cycles, and managed interdisciplinary, new work festivals. Currently, she is the Program Coordinator for Shakespeare at Winedale and a MFA Directing Candidate at Texas State University.
Mario L. Patrenella
Media & Design
Paul Feinstein, Jeremy Brown, Benjamin Summers,
Rommel Sulit & A. Skola Summers
Hyde Park Theatre