The Prosthetics of Joy is a live performance where the players, set and costumes are indivisible. During the performance, a photograph I found on Facebook is slowly reconstructed. The photo is of 40+ children at a bar mitzvah party dressed like serious adults, but in the midst of a unanimous and literal jump for joy.
In the re-enactment, adults, who are supported in their exact mid-jump positions by sculptural supports, play the children. The performance culminates in the moment when the scene onstage has unfolded into a precise but jury-rigged recreation of the original photo.
Made possible thanks to the support of the students, faculty and staff at the University of Alabama, especially Lauren Lake, John Fields, Stacey Holloway, Doug Boulos, Gary Chapman, and Sir Jared Ragland.
Plus Rob Clifton, Matt Apker, Lucy Allen, John V., Jacob and Mermer.
Assistant Direction and general life-saving techniques by John Orth.
Live musical ingenuity by Armand Margjeka.
Sponsored in part by the John S. Jemison Fund, College of Arts & Sciences & the Department of Art & Art History at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
Original photo courtesy of Cynthia Wolberger by way of Lisa Ferrandi.
Re-enactment shot taken by Jared Ragland.
Video documentation by Ryan A. Meyer.
Research Assistance by Jacob Ferrandi.
Technical Consultation by David “Scout” McQueen.
Additional support provided by Keil Troisi. And Santo.