UP ABOVE THE SKY WAITED, TOO
Premiering February 2023
UP ABOVE THE SKY WAITED, TOO is a performance art theater piece in development by aerialist/recovering opera singer Elizabeth Munn and Grammy Award winning tenor Aaron Sheehan. An absurd and whimsical exploration of adornment from dearth to excess and back again, this evening length work draws inspiration from the parallel written patterns of weather and Baroque dance. How do these cyclical patterns both mimic and govern the expectation of our expression and movement through the world? What limitations do we experience because of these expectations? We examine the isolation of archetype and assumption through the imagined modern lives of the Furies, giving way to a discovery of connection, adventure and reinvention. Our story is told through a blend of live music, physical comedy, object manipulation, aerial work and film projection.
This program is made possible, in part, by support from Bindlestiff Family Variety Arts, Inc. and the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs.
CAST & CREW
Grammy Award winning tenor, Aaron Sheehan, has established himself as a first rate singer in many styles. His voice is heard regularly in the U.S., Europe and South America, and is equally comfortable in repertoire ranging from oratorio and chamber music to the opera stage.
His singing has taken him to many festivals and venues, including Tanglewood, Lincoln Center, Kennedy Center, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Washington National Cathedral, New Zealand Arts Festival, and the early music festivals of Boston, San Francisco, Houston, Tucson, Vancouver, Washington, D.C., and Madison. Known especially for his Baroque interpretations, Aaron has appeared in concert with Orpheus Chamber Orchestra, Seattle Symphony, Tafelmusik, Boston Early Music Festival, American Bach Soloists, Handel and Haydn Society, Boston Baroque, North Carolina Symphony, Colorado Symphony, Charlotte Symphony, Charleston Bach Festival, Baltimore Handel Choir, Pacific Chorale, Opera LaFayette, Tempesta di Mare, Aston Magna Festival, Washington National Cathedral, Bach Collegium San Diego, Tragicomedia, PacificMusicworks, Tenet, Opera Atelier, and Les Voix Baroques.
N. Fury, Composer/Arranger, co-director & creator
Band of Furies: Percussion
Cory Cox is a world-class drummer and native Houstonian known for his high energy and relentless creativity on the drums. He began playing drums at the age of eight and his professional success is much attributed to the completion of his studies at the Dave Brubeck Institute and the New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music.
Cory currently resides in New York City where he continues to excel not only as a performer, but also as a passionate educator at The Calhoun School, Bronx Arts, and the Brooklyn Institute of Liberal Arts, as well as the Litchfield Jazz Camp and Stanford Jazz Workshop. His performance history includes the Bern Switzerland Jazz Festival, Monterey Jazz Festival, Dolomiti Ski Jazz Festival, Stanford Jazz Festival and dozens of other festivals throughout the U.S., Italy, Israel, Switzerland, Croatia and Japan. Cory has accompanied artists such as Dave Brubeck, Reggie Workman, Jimmy Owens, John Ellis, Joel Frahm, Javier Vercher, Marcus Strickland, John Raymond, Hironobu Saito, and Thana Alexa to name a few. Cory’s creativity and energetic sound can be heard on his album “The Core.”
Zwelakhe-Duma Bell le Pere
Band of Furies: Bass
On May 3rd, 2019 in his debut at Firehouse 12, Zwelakhe-Duma Bell le Pere showcased a body of work entitled "Sapphire". Featured on his forthcoming release, this repertoire blends ancestral images with a rich textural density that represent his identity as a denizen of two worlds. Originally from Johannesburg, South Africa, Zwelakhe-Duma relocated to New Haven, Connecticut to study with Jeff Fuller at New Haven's Educational Center for the Arts, before receiving both a BA and MM from New England Conservatory in Boston. While he was at N.E.C., he studied acoustic bass with Cecil McBee & Don Palma, as well as improvisation and composition with Jason Moran, John McNeil, and Jerry Bergonzi.
Zwelakhe-Duma has performed and recorded with acts such as Christian Scott, Dave Holland, Randy Weston, Dave Liebman, and Jason Moran, as well as performed at the Monterey Jazz Festival, Charlie Parker Jazz Festival, Panama Jazz Festival, Lagos Jazz Festival, Osaka Jazz Festival, Joy of Jazz Festival & MoMA's "Summergarden" series. He was a recipient of the 2011 Betty Carter’s Jazz Ahead Fellowship and is also a teaching artist for Jazz at Lincoln Center’s "Jazz for Young People," Litchfield Jazz Camp & New England Conservatory Jazz Lab. Zwelakhe-Duma currently resides in New York City and continues in private study with legendary bassist Ron Carter. He is currently touring with Blue Note Recording artist Nduduzo Makhathini.
Shayna Golub is a New York City based aerialist, dancer, educator and arts administrator. As an administrator, she has worked with the Contemporary Circus and Immersive Arts Center (CCIAC), Hideaway Circus, Anver Entertainment, Cirque Us, The Muse Brooklyn, and Schoen Movement Company. Shayna has performed with Phish, ABCirque, Incanto Productions, CCIAC, and Atlas Circus Company.
Shayna is currently teaching aerial at Aerial Arts, Bridge for Dance and Om Factory, where she runs the kids program.
Elizabeth Munn is an aerialist exploring new ways of storytelling through multi-disciplinary collaborations. After a career as a classical singer, she tried circus on a whim and was immediately hooked. As an aerialist she combines the discipline of her classical music training with her background in dance and physical theater.
A versatile artist, Elizabeth is equally at home in theater, nightlife and creating/producing devised work. Her new work UP ABOVE THE SKY WAITED, TOO, a collaboration with Aaron Sheehan, premieres in February 2023. Currently, she is co-producing The Underground Cabaret with Anver Entertainment. She created the evening length I CAN'T SLEEP, a collection of dance theater pieces developed and produced at Dixon Place. She sang, danced and performed all things circus in 2 Ring Circus' production of GODSPELL (Aerialist) at Arkansas Repertory Theater. She also produced We Want It Darker with co-creators Cassandra Rosebeetle and Jason Mejias. Elizabeth has performed frequently with Bindlestiff Family Cirkus, 2 Ring Circus and Lisa's Bright Ideas, and is a regular on the cabaret scene in New York.