CONTACT: WINSTON BARCLAY
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0073; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Jan. 7, 2000
'Stomp' comes to Hancher Jan. 28-30 to play everything
including kitchen sink
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- "Stomp," the percussion/theater spectacle
that has given new meaning to the phrase "smash hit," has been one of the
most popular events of recent University of Iowa performing arts seasons.
Now the show where percussionists with attitude play everything INCLUDING
the kitchen sink is returning to Hancher Auditorium for four more performances
-- at 8 p.m. Friday. Jan. 28; 5 p.m. and 9 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 29; and 2 p.m.
Sunday, Jan. 30.
The performers who will swing from the stage's back wall
while pounding on auto parts and thunder across the auditorium's stage in
oil-drum shoes are part of an international entertainment phenomenon that
has included multiple companies performing on tour and in New York.
The New York media found a variety of ways to describe
"Stomp" during its long, triumphant off-Broadway run at the Orpheum Theatre
in the East Village: "a modern vaudeville review with a rock-and-roll heart,"
"a joyful blitz of disquiet," "a unique, elaborate kind of tin can serenade,"
"kind of a barely controlled tantrum," and "the greatest show in theater history
ever to rely on the percussive qualities of garden tools, auto parts, janitorial
effects and general bric-a-brac."
In attempting to give a sense of the show, The New Yorker
suggested, "Think Sharks and Jets with props, or post-punk cheerleaders on
speed, and you'll start to get the idea."
"Stomp" has attracted similar acclaim on the road. Declaring
the show "a hoot," the Los Angeles Times described "Stomp" as "made up of
equal parts musical precision (and) joyous anarchy." And the Orange County
Register concluded that "Stomp" is a "rip-roaring good time" that "only a
Scrooge could hate."
"Stomp" performers have appeared on virtually every major
TV talk and variety show, the Emmy Awards and even on a segment of the 1996
Academy Awards. Excerpts from the production have caused a sensation on TV
shows ranging from Rosie O'Donnell, Letterman, Leno, Regis and Kathie Lee,
and Conan, to "Entertainment Tonight," "Good Morning America" "Dateline NBC,"
"The Today Show," "A Current Affair," VH1, CNN, a Penn and Teller special,
Nickelodeon's "Nick News" and even "Mad About You," "General Hospital," "Mr.
Roger's Neighborhood" and "Roseanne."
Reports have been heard on National Public Radio, and
the group has been featured in photo spreads in Mademoiselle, Esquire and
numerous other magazines.
The show's visibility has been further increased by hard-hitting
national advertising appearances including spots for Target Stores and an
ice-pick serenade for Coca-Cola.
The history of "Stomp" producer/directors Luke Cresswell
and Steve McNicholas can be traced to Pookiesnackenburger, a band that gave
a street-tough urban update to the age-old British tradition of busking, or
Before creating "Stomp," Cresswell's and McNicholas' credits
included composing award-winning theme music for British television; writing
theater and movie soundtracks; recording with Bette Midler and Quincy Jones;
and staging outdoor percussion spectacles.
But "Stomp" has taken them to a new level of recognition
and acclaim. In London "Stomp" won the prestigious Laurence Olivier Award
for Best Choreography and was a nominee for Best Entertainment, and in New
York the show received an Obie Award (the off-Broadway equivalent of the Tony
Awards) and a Drama Desk Award for "Unique Theatre Experience." The HBO Special
"STOMP Out Loud" received four Emmy nominations.
The actor/percussionists of "Stomp" make a rhythm out
of "anything we can get our hands on that makes a sound," Cresswell explains.
In fact, "Stomp" uses everything EXCEPT traditional percussion instruments:
Synchronized stiff-bristle brooms become a sweeping orchestra; zippo lighters
create a fiery fugue; and metal trash can lids become musical martial-arts
A "Stomp" company can go through 1,000 garbage-can lids,
700 brooms, 1,400 matchboxes, 750 garbage cans and 7,000 pints of water each
What makes "Stomp" a show, rather than just a concert,
is the combination of highly athletic choreography and the comic theater that
grows out of all the slamming, banging and stomping. The performers interact
in percussive vignettes of conflict, catharsis and community.
UI Men's Intercollegiate Athletics and the Cantebury Inn
& Suites are the corporate sponsors of "Stomp" through the University
of Iowa Foundation, with media support from the Gazette.
Learn more about "Stomp" at <http://www.stomponline.com/home.html>
on the World Wide Web. For information on UI arts, visit <http://www.uiowa.edu/~uiowacr>.
Tickets for "Stomp" are $35, $32 and $30. UI students
and senior citizens qualify for a 20-percent discount, with Zone 3 tickets
available to UI students for $10. Tickets for children 17 and younger are
half price. Hancher volume-purchase discounts are still available.
Hancher box office hours are 10 a.m.-5:30 p.m. weekdays,
and 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday. From the local calling area, dial (319) 335-1160.
Long distance is toll-free, 1-800-HANCHER. Fax to (319) 353-2284. Orders may
be charged to VISA, MasterCard or American Express. UI students may charge
their purchases to their university bills, and UI faculty and staff may select
the option of payroll deduction.
People with special needs for access, seating and auxiliary
services should dial (319) 335-1158. This number will be answered by box office
personnel prepared to offer assistance with handicapped parking, wheelchair
access and seating, hearing augmentation and other services. The line is equipped
with TDD for people with hearing impairment who use that technology.
(NOTE TO EDITORS: To request "Stomp" interviews, contact
Columbia Artists Management at 212-841-9640. Fax: 212-841-9712.)