A Piece of Work

December 18 – 21, 2013

Alternate Title A Piece of Work: A machine-made Hamlet by Annie Dorsen
Premiere New York Premiere
Production Language English
Country of Origin United States, Norway, Austria, France
Description To sleep. To dream. In Shakespeare’s Hamlet, we confront the most fundamental questions of our humanity. But what exactly do we confront when the play is shuffled, reordered, and rewritten by a computer?

In this daring marriage of live acting and artificial intelligence, Obie Award-winning director Annie Dorsen delivers a provocative parsing of Shakespeare’s work. Based on a sophisticated algorithm that generates a new version of the play nightly—words, visuals, lighting, music, and all—A Piece of Work features one actor, alternating between Obie winner Scott Shepherd (Elevator Repair Service’s Gatz, The Wooster Group’s Hamlet) and theater legend Joan MacIntosh, a looming computer screen, and a chorus of synthesized voices channeling this uncanny text, refashioned in the automated image of our digital times.
Identifier 2013f.00030
Season Fall 2013
VenueFisher Building (Fishman Space, Hillman Studio)
directorAnnie Dorsen
lighting designerBruno Pocheron, Ruth Waldeyer
multimedia artistJim Findlay
playwrightAnnie Dorsen
sound designerGrégory Beller
top billingAnnie Dorsen