WEST COAST PREMIERE: On May 23, 2014, Elliot Rodger killed six people and injured 13 in Santa Barbara, California, in a rampage motivated by his lack of success with women—a fixation he had detailed in a series of confessional and defiant YouTube videos. New York City multimedia artists Royal Osiris Karaoke Ensemble respond to this wound to the body of Love with a modern-day ritual performance suffused with humor and experimentation. Mining source material ranging from self-help dating advice to confessional shopping videos, the group unpacks, isolates, and rearranges contemporary romantic mythologies and situates Rodger’s actions within a broader collection of found love stories and online video content. Within the sacred space of the performance, this “musical priesthood” will lead a group meditation on insecurity, longing, and masculinity, performing humanity’s common search for Love as we misunderstand it.
Royal Osiris Karaoke Ensemble (ROKE) has performed rituals at the Guggenheim Museum, Under the Radar Festival, FringeArts, Under the Radar’s Incoming! Series, Gibney Dance Center, Kate Werble Gallery, Special Effects Festival at Participant Inc., Prelude Festival, AUNTS [email protected], and JACK. ROKE received a 2016 Creative Capital award for The Art of Luv series, and has been awarded a Franklin Furnace Fund grant (2013) and a BAX Space Grant (2014). They were part of the Public Theater’s Devised Theater Working Group and PS122’s RAMP residency program. They spent the summer of 2014 at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture and were 2015 CUNY Hunter Artists-in-Residence in ceramics. The Art of Luv (Part 1): Elliot is created with support from The Public Theater’s Devised Theater Working Group, Gibney Dance Center, The Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, and a residency at CUNY City Tech. Royal Osiris Karaoke Ensemble is supported by Immediate Medium’s AGENCY program, which provides financial, administrative, and equipment support to emerging artists. The Art of Luv is a project of Creative Capital.