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Monday Morning Roundup

by Stephen Becker 10 Dec 2012 8:01 AM

Today in the roundup: Assessing Dead White Zombies’ latest effort, David Conn’s large tree paintings and Tod Machover’s city-wide symphony.


A (W)HOLE NEW WORLD: “A karmic love story that follows two lovers, soul mates, separated at the fall of Troy and searching for each other through time and space…enter into an immersive, dream-like hallucinatory world where the many lives of the lovers occur simultaneously.” That’s how Dead White Zombies describes (w)hole, its current mix of theater, dance, visual art and other media. Sounds pretty unconventional. So does it work? “It makes you hope that a major breakthrough for Dead White Zombies and the local theater scene is taking place. Sadly, only fragments of the remaining show rise to that level,” is how Lawson Taitte sums it up on But Kris Noteboom was into it. “The level of dedication in the performance is beyond that which most will have seen as there is no simple role and often the performers are required not only to deliver emotionally striking material, but even infuse their own personal experiences into the performances in a sometimes scripted, sometimes improvisational confessional of sorts,” he writes on “It’s cathartic not just as a story, but for those who are there to take it in.” Catch it through Dec. 22.

LEAVES AND TREES: David Conn’s large-scale paintings depict dense forest scenes. And for the last two years, he’s been hard at work on a collection of them for “Return: Paintings and Prints by David Conn,” his current show at Artspace 111 in Fort Worth. “When people look at a print, they don’t know if it is a forest in Colorado or a garden in Versailles. The narrative starts with the person,” he tells “They bring the narrative to the piece. The piece is just a stage to bring about something in them — a sense of air, of wonder, a sense of gardening, whatever may appear. Sometimes its fear. But the narrative is inside the person.” The show is up through Jan. 26.

TOD IN TORONTO: A few weeks ago, we reported that the Dallas Opera has received $30,000 from the NEA to fund its staging of Tod Machover’s Death and the Powers: The Robots’ Opera. If you attended Machover’s recent chat with Jerome, you know he’s into all sorts of cutting-edge work. One of his current projects is a collaboration with the Toronto Symphony and, essentially, the whole city of Toronto. So how is that going to work? Machover explains to the CBC.