Teatro Yerbabruja presents an immersive performance art experience, “Constellations,” outdoors under the North Fork night sky at the Custer Observatory in Southold on Saturday, Sept. 4 at 8 p.m. 

“Constellations” is a multimedia, interdisciplinary performance that integrates dance, theater, sound, and painting with technology, to create a multisensory experience for the audience. 

The word “constellation” comes from Latin – con (together) stella (star). These groups of stars are united by imaginary lines that form discernible patterns, resembling figures recognizable to the cultures that interpret them.

In an attempt to understand our existence, constellations often have served as maps for humans who try to find physical and spiritual paths. 

The past year has confirmed that our survival requires human connection and has drawn many to examine our place between earth and space.

This production introduces personal stories as contemporary narratives, using dancers’ bodies and new technology to create performative installations that explore our personal connections through constellations that inspire us.

Performer and activist Margarita Espada is the founder and Executive-Artistic Director of Teatro Yerbabruja, which uses the arts as a tool for social change. Margarita’s work explores new theater language and the relationship of images, the actor and the audience.

This production includes the works of the following artists:

Visual artist Joan Wozniak, who works in Media Services at Suffolk County Community College, is a photographer and multimedia storyteller. Joan has collaborated with Yerbabruja as a visual artist and interactive technology technician, using coding to manipulate images, and utilizing projectors, connectors, and digital sensors in their productions.

Phillip Baldwin, a scenographer at Stony Brook University and immersive environment designer, contributes to this performance with current work dealing with the relationship of space to telematics and telepresence. He has explored the integration of ‘zero distance’ telematics in public installations.

Lia Dominguez is a choreographer, contemporary dancer and Director of the PuntoCero Company in Mexico. She has been researching and artistically exploring the theme of constellations for years. This performance work is her first collaboration with Yerbabruja in the United States.

Cailyn Ivanov is a new artist to the Yerbabruja collective. She is a photographer, dancer and videographer currently studying fine arts at Farmingdale State College.

Segundo Orellana,a visual artist and the coordinator of 2nd Ave Firehouse Gallery in Bay Shore,  has art and murals that are part of public art projects on display in Islip Town, Patchogue Village and other locations.

Following the concert, observatory staff will provide guided tours of the night sky (weather permitting) through their many telescopes on site, including the apochromatic Zerochromat telescope in their historic observation dome. A rain date is scheduled for Sunday, September 5 at 7:30 pm.

Tickets are $35 for adult and $20 for observatory members. Children under 16 will be admitted free of charge. To make reservations, visit custerobservatory.org. Blankets and chairs are recommended to fully enjoy this outdoor performance. Custer Institute is located at 1118 Main Bayview Road in Southold. To learn more about Teatro Yerbabruja, visit www.teatroyerbabruja.org.

Beth Young
Beth Young is an award-winning local journalist who has been covering the East End since the 1990s. She began her career at the Sag Harbor Express and, after receiving her Masters from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, has reported for the Southampton Press, the East Hampton Press and the Times/Review Media Group. She founded the East End Beacon website in 2013, and a print edition in 2017. Beth was born and raised on the North Fork. In her spare time, she tinkers with bicycles, tries not to drown in the Peconic Bay and hopes to grow the perfect tomato. You can send her a message at editor@eastendbeacon.com

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