A telephone hotline, a vinyl record, a performance.
Is anyone out there? Is anyone listening? Are we alone? In 1977, NASA launched the twin Voyager spacecrafts to try and answer these questions. Aboard both is the Golden Record, an artifact intended to communicate who and what we are. After 43 years and over 13 billion miles, this proverbial message in a bottle is the farthest human-made object from earth. If we were to send another message into the distant future, what message would we send?
To answer this, Theater Mitu created a public telephone hotline (646-694-8050) prompting people to leave messages to the future. These voicemails, along with messages from astronauts, astronomers, futurists, spiritual communities and middle school students make up the source material for Utopian Hotline.
The Utopian Hotline is still open and receiving messages. Join us for an immersive audiovisual installation to reflect on the source material that makes up this work, and take a moment to dial the hotline and leave us a message. As this work tours the country, new voicemails will be continuously integrated into the fabric of the installation to bridge together the voices of all the communities we visit.
The installation is FREE and for ALL AGES and will be open to the public the following dates/times:
Friday 10/7 - 11 a.m.– 3 p.m.
Saturday 10/8 - 11 a.m.– 4 p.m.
Thursday 10/13 from 3 p.m.– 5 p.m.
Friday 10/14 from 3 p.m.– 5 p.m.
Performed inside the installation space - small, limited audiences will gather, not in the darkness of a traditional theater, but underneath a 30-foot projection screen, on a pink carpet, around a communal table, to reimagine our shared future. Four performers tethered to audience members by headphones will musicalize and transmit these collected messages. Together, they will acknowledge coming into community as a radical action. An action that has consistently shaped this planet’s future. An action that reaffirms that someone is listening, that we are, in fact, not alone.
Tickets are required for all perfomances. Performances are for AGES 14+ and will be held on Thursday, Oct. 13 at 7 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.; Friday, Oct. 14 at 7 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.; Saturday, Oct. 15 at noon, 1:30 p.m., 5 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.
Directed by: Rubén Polendo
Created by: Kayla Asbell, Denis Butkus, Cinthia Chen, Alex Hawthorn, Michael Littig, Dima Mikhayel Matta, Justin Nestor, Rubén Polendo, Scott Spahr, Corey Sullivan, Monica Sanborn, Isabella Uzcátegui and Ada Westfall.
Performed by: Michael Littig, Shanga Parker, Monica Sanborn, and Ada Westfall.
In partnership with: SETI Institute, Arizona State University's Interplanetary Initiative and Brooklyn Independent Middle School.
Utopian Hotline was made possible through the support of The National Endowment for the Arts, New York City’s Department of Cultural Affairs, by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of former Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, The New England Foundation for the Arts, The MAP Fund, The Foundation for Contemporary Art, Café Royal Cultural Foundation, The Howard Gilman Foundation, The New York Community Trust and our generous individual supporters.