No other performance company in New Orleans approaches the complexities of this city like ArtSpot Productions/Moving Humans, which has taken advantage of its residency at the Contemporary Arts Center (CAC) to stage such challenging pieces as To Flee, Flee This Sad Hotel, Chekhov's Wild Ride and a remounting of the Obie Award-winning Nita & Zita. The group's sixth production of its two-year residency, New Orleans Suite, runs the dual risk of overreach and cliche with its promise of a 'celebration of life in New Orleans in two parts: 'Saturday Night' and 'Sunday Morning.'' Hmmm. Sin and redemption? Haven't we been down this Big Easy road countless times before? Perhaps, but we're talking about ArtSpot/Moving Humans, which can take the ordinary and stand it on its head. Collaborators Kathy Randels and J Hammons always seem to have their eyes on the little things that others overlook. More than others, they know that not everything is as it appears, which may as well be New Orleans' motto.
And so, yes, we'll see the clashes of voodoo and Christianity, hear everything from gospel and jazz to blues and hip-hop, and see the culinary threads of French and African cuisine. Pardon the pun, but that's a lot to chew on, so we're intrigued by what this group of performers will come up with. Randels and Hammons will be joined by Roscoe Reddix Jr. (pictured), Maritza Mercado-Narcisse and Yvahn Martin. The crew includes composer Courtney Bryan, sculptor Clifton Webb, costume designer Ellen Macomber and lighting designer Rusty Tennant.
Tickets are $15 general admission and $12 students, seniors and CAC members and are available through the CAC Web site or by calling 528-3800. For more info, visit www.artspotproductions.org. There will also be a 'pay-what-you-can' night on June 1.
8 p.m. Friday-Sunday, May 27-29; 3 p.m. Sunday, May 30; through June 12
Contemporary Arts Center, 900 Camp St., 528-3800; www.cacno.org
click to enlarge