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The Orchard Off Broadway 

 
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Arlekin Players Theatre | Zero Gravity (zero-G) Virtual Theater Lab

May–July 2022

The Orchard is a hybrid piece of theater and can be seen in two formats:
Live and In Person at Baryshnikov Arts Center (New York, NY)
OR
Virtual Experience Online, accessible worldwide

www.TheOrchardOffBroadway.com

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Conceived, adapted and directed by Igor Golyak

Based on The Cherry Orchard by Anton Chekhov,

as translated by Carol Rocamora 

With new material by Igor Golyak 

Featuring Jessica Hecht as Ranevskaya

With Juliet Brett, Darya Denisova, Elisa Kibler, John McGinty,  

Nael Nacer, Mark Nelson and Ilia Volok

And Mikhail Baryshnikov as Anton Chekhov and Firs

Executive Producer: Sara Stackhouse ​

Produced by Arlekin Players Theatre and (zero-G) Lab

In association with Cherry Orchard Festival, Groundswell Theatricals and ShowOne Productions 

***

The Orchard invites us into the fragile world of a family yearning for connection and struggling with the end of their world as they know it. Threatened with foreclosure and the loss of their beloved orchard, they face unstoppable, destructive forces that dismantle their lives like the breaking of a string.

 

Additional info

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RECENT PROJECTS

chekhovOS
an experimental game

 

Based on The Cherry Orchard by Anton Chekhov
Conceived & Directed by Igor Golyak
Featuring Jessica Hecht as Ranevskaya and Mikhail Baryshnikov as Anton Chekhov
Virtual Set & Environment Designer: Anna Fedorova 
Game Engine & Interaction Design: Will Brierly, Snowrunner Productions
Virtual Performance Technical Director: Vladimir Gusev
Music composition by Jakov Jakoulov
Produced by Igor Golyak & Sara Stackhouse
Platform: The Soft Layer by Snowrunner Productions

 

***

chekhovOS fused film, theater and video game technology to create a new medium where viewers are able to interact directly with the performers. Inspired by Anton Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard and drawing from recordings of Chekhov’s letters and dreams, this interactive online theater experience accesses the operating system behind both Chekhov’s computer and the world in which his characters live, searching for happiness.

Additional info

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Arlekin Players Theatre

Zero Gravity (zero-G) Virtual Theater Lab

May–June 2021

Virtual | Online 

Awards: 

  • Broadway World Regional Award: Best Director of a Streamed Production

  • 2022 Elliot Norton Special Citation for ‘Pioneering work in Online Theater’

  • Twi NY Pandemic Award

  • Best Theater of 2021, Don Aucoin, The Boston Globe

  • Best Theater of 2021, Jules Becker, The Jewish Journal

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State vs. Natasha Banina

 
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Arlekin Players Theatre

Zero Gravity (zero-G) Virtual Theater Lab

June–July 2020

Virtual | Online

Awards: 

  • New York Times Critic’s Pick 

  • London Fringe Festivals “OFFies Award” Nominee

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Based on Natasha’s Dream by Yaroslava Pulinovich

Adapted & Directed by Igor Golyak

Translated by John Freedman

Starring Darya Denisova as Natasha

Production Associate: Marianna Golyak

Animator: Anton Iakhontov

Music Composer: Vadim Khrapatchev

Produced by Igor Golyak & Sara Stackhouse

***

Rehearsed and live streamed in Igor’s living room during quarantine, this piece was created as a new form to overcome social distancing and the pandemic, ultimately uniting people in one virtual space by merging theater, cinematography and video games.

In State vs Natasha Banina, a teenage girl tells the story of her life in a small-town orphanage and her desire to be free, to break out of her world. From the inside of a Zoom courtroom, she makes twists and turns through her unique appeal to audiences as the jurors, letting them into her world where she dreams about love, family, acceptance, adjusting and her future. Ultimately the two worlds collide, and the audience must decide her fate.

Additional info

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The Seagull

 

By Anton Chekhov

Directed by Igor Golyak 

Scenic Design by Nikolay Simonov

Costume Design by Nastya Bugaeva

Lighting Desing by Jeff Adelberg

Music Composition by Jakov Jakoulov 

 

***

This new adaptation of Anton Chekhov’s The Seagull brought together different cultures, languages and backgrounds to reach new grounds in human understanding and compassion. While the main themes of the play revolve around art and theater, there is an incredible void that is ever growing between characters, that ultimately ends with a suicide of an artist.

It is an exploration of the nature of an artist, the longing to realize oneself, stand up against the deadening of the arts, of people, and of life. While sometimes at the expense of relationships and loved ones, an incredible beauty is discovered by said artist that heals and unites people.

By mixing different languages, and going deep into exploring Chekhov’s world of creation through his journals, letters and the play itself, this production looked to answer our own struggles as artists and as people in the 21st century. The alienation of people in the play was found to be very relevant today, where countries–just like people–struggle to listen and hear, look and see, and ultimately connect to find compassion.

Additional info

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Arlekin Players Theatre

November–December 2019

In-Person

Awards: 

  • 2020 Elliot Norton Award Nominee: Outstanding Production

  • 2020 Elliot Norton Award Nominee: Outstanding Direction

  • 2020 Elliot Norton Award Nominee: ​​Outstanding Ensemble

  • 2020 Elliot Norton Award Winner: Outstanding Design

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The Stone

 
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​Arlekin Players Theatre 

September 2019

In-person

Awards: 

  • 2020 Eliot Norton Award Winner: Outstanding Production

  • 2020 Eliot Norton Award Winner: Outstanding Direction

  • 2020 Elliot Norton Award Nominee: ​​Outstanding Ensemble

  • 2020 Elliot Norton Award Nominee: Outstanding Design 

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By Marius von Mayenburg

Directed by Igor Golyak

Scenic Design by David R. Gammons

Costume Design by Nastya Bugaeva

Lighting Design by Jeff Adelberg

Music Composition by Jakov Jakoulov 

***

In 1935, a young couple purchases a house from a Jewish family in Dresden, Germany. The play follows the lives of the house’s residents, who must grapple with their own identity while experiencing the reverberations created by 60 years of German history. As a house passes from owner to owner, and from generation to generation, the secrets buried in the garden and seeping from the walls reveal themselves.

Additional info

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WITNESS

 

Written by Nana Grinstein

with Blair Cadden & Igor Golyak

Conceived and directed by Igor Golyak 

Scenography & Costume Design by Anna Fedorova

Virtual Design by Daniel Cormino

Sound Design by Viktor Semenov

Director of Photography/Editor: Anton Nikolaev

Produced by Sara Stackhouse

Featuring the Arlekin Acting Company

***

WITNESS is a new documentary theater piece about Jewish immigration in the face of antisemitism.  WITNESS brings actors and audience together from around the world for a shared immersive experience set on a boat in digital space.  The piece is inspired by the journey of the MS St. Louis, which left Hamburg in 1939 with over 900 Jewish people on board and headed to Cuba only to be turned away, leaving the passengers stranded with nowhere to go and no escape. WITNESS shares stories of Jewish immigrants from around the globe through an interactive virtual theater experience at the nexus of film, theater and video games.

Additional info

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Arlekin Players Theatre

Zero Gravity (zero-G) Virtual Theater Lab

December 2021– January 2022

Virtual | Online 

Awards: 

  • Boston Globe Critic’s Pick

  • This Week in New York Pandemic Award Winner: Best Immersive Historical Drama 

  • Best Theater of 2021, Jules Becker, Jewish Journal

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The Merchant of Venice

 
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Actors’ Shakespeare Project

September–October 2021

In-person

Awards: 

  • Best Theater of 2021, Don Aucoin, The Boston Globe

  • Best Theater of 2021, Ed Seigel, WBUR

  • Best Theater of 2021, Jules Becker, The Jewish Journal

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By William Shakespeare 

Directed by Igor Golyak 

***

Exploring themes of prejudice, mercy, compassion, revenge, and humanity/inhumanity, this production of The Merchant of Venice set the story in the present moment. Bassanio, a Venetian lord whose pockets are currently empty, needs a loan to travel to the island of Belmont and pursue Portia, a rich heiress. His dear friend Antonio, a wealthy nobleman of Venice, agrees to give him a loan and, in turn, borrows the money from a Jewish moneylender, Shylock. Shylock, who has resented Antonio for many years, locks him into a legal bond that will threaten his life if not fulfilled. The duality of Venice’s Carnivale – its lush, irreverent playfulness alongside its hidden underbelly of subversiveness – sets the stage for this drama to unfold, asking how much we have truly evolved in our empathy for those we think of as the “other.”

Additional info

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