One of my favorite experiences is interactive/immersive theater. Jeffery Carpenter and Tami Dixon own Bricolage Production Company, and are paving the way for a new form of entertainment here in the city of Pittsburgh. I have been excited about their work for years, and am very fortunate to get to sit down with them, and have a chat about why they love doing what they do, what is coming up soon for them, and how they think theater is changing all over the world. Their next project comes up soon, called SAINTS TOUR which is in association with Real/ Time Interventions. It runs May 21st through June 13th and highlights the history of Braddock, Pa, with the tagline “There’s something in the dirt”. This, aside from revealing fascinating history of Braddock, is the extent of what I can tell you about this tour. One of the perfect and magical things that I love about Bricolage is the absolute secrecy about their shows, and Saints Tour is no stranger to that. I can tell you from their past events such as Strata, Midnight Radio, and Ojo (which I missed and will never forgive myself), that you are in for a treat that you will not see coming, nor expect. I regard all of Bricolage’s shows so highly, that I was honored that they would take the time to talk with me.
This turned out to be one of my favorite conversations, which I will warn you, went a bit long, which just means we were very into what we were talking about, and those are the best podcasts I record. People truly let go, and have a passionate conversation about what they love doing, which is, in this case, theater. My siblings and I perform, and I think it is a truly invaluable form of entertainment. Bricolage, in my opinion, is at the front of that entertainment right here in our city, and we are lucky to have them. What Jeff and Tami, along with Molly Rice who is a playwright that conceived and wrote Saints Tour give to this city is a labor of love. It is tough to try to explain to people the exact method of this type of theater. What it is, how it will effect you, what to expect. If you are familiar with popular shows in N.Y.C. such as Sleep No More, Then She Fell, Here Lies Love, and many others, Bricolage is in the same vein as those ideas. In my opinion, however, they are transcending those shows, because they are an ever changing production. The amount of talent, time, organization, and effort that they put into their experiences is astounding to me. They are creating something from nothing, using what is available around them, and once it’s gone, it is gone. They then start all over again to bring their audience something fresh, something different, surprising, and new. If you haven’t tried a night out to any of their productions, do it. If you think it isn’t for you, just try it. You will have a strong reaction to anything they produce. Whether it makes you feel something you haven’t felt in years, making you angry, sad, happy, peaceful, you will feel. I can promise you, that you will have something to talk about for days to come, and you will be addicted… waiting for them to reveal their next production. Waiting…just like me.
Jeffery Carpenter, Tami Dixon, Molly Reed
Bria Walker from Saints Tour