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IPE New Works 2021

News Story

When the pandemic put their projects on hold, sophomore students in the International Performance Ensemble (IPE) kept creating and collaborating—and now they’re ready to share their work. Starting Friday, February 26, discover AliveAwakeAlert and Haven.

A one-of-a-kind program in the US, the International Performance Ensemble (IPE) trains students in the development of an ensemble theater company. It also provides young actors with the opportunity to tour nationally and internationally as part of exchange programs with companies and artists from all over the world. And now they’re ready to present their work.

Reserve your tickets for the IPE New Works! Performances will take place as follows:

  • >> Friday, February 26, at 7:30 p.m.
  • >> Saturday, February 27, at 2:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.
  • >> Sunday, February 28, at 2:00 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

Descriptions of Each Piece:


“In January of 2020—when COVID-19 had already spread throughout Wuhan, China, but had only recently arrived on US shores—the freshmen ensemble and I were in the early stages of exploring themes that might drive the devising process for our show. Little did we know, in those tender early days of creation, that a global pandemic would irrevocably change all of our lives and the course of world history.

Inspired by John Crary’s prophetic 24/7: Late Capitalism and the Ends of Sleep, we wondered what it would mean for the increasingly powerful pharmaceutical industry to join forces with other industries and government to drive a relentless cycle of capitalist productivity in the United States. Mere weeks later, having suspended in-person classroom and office convening, the working world would infiltrate domestic life, rendering labor endless and making surveillance commonplace, even in our most intimate spaces.

Today, nearly one year into the pandemic, we continue to wonder how the capitalist hunger for productivity will manifest itself in a brutalized, post-pandemic economy, and a traumatized population bereft of elders, and deeply in need of healing. We hope that AliveAwakeAlert will provoke personal reflection and curiosity about the world in which we live, the world to come, and the realities we hope to build together.”

—Marisol Rosa-Shapiro


“Over one year ago, I gathered for the first rehearsal with a group of nine IPE first-year students to create a new ensemble theater piece. As a starting point, I asked them to choose themes they had an interest in exploring. What came up repeatedly was community, identity, and chosen family.

In our first rehearsals, before the inevitable pause, shut down, and pivot to an online format required by the pandemic, we enjoyed improvisations and physical explorations of a world where people would come to connect and to heal; a place where they could be who they weren’t able to be in their regular or ‘real’ lives. Characters began to emerge—some were new to this place, this Haven, and others had been there for a long long while—maybe forever. We discovered that the rules of Haven were a bit different than our world. We moved to a remote format and the students focused on writing. This winter, the writing has been refined, characters and relationships deepened, and the Zoom format explored as a stronger partner for the world of the play.

So what is Haven? The playwrights describe Haven as a ‘realm,’ ‘a space that can be whatever one needs it to be.’ It is a place that is both real and hyper-real, both physical and metaphysical, infused with both comedy and pathos. Run by gentle and quirky elder residents, Haven offers individuals a chance to transform, to connect, and to risk moving on. I am immensely proud of the work of these young artists, thrilled that they have continued to move forward in spite of the challenges of these times, and excited for you to see the compassion, imagination, and humor of their vision. Welcome to Haven.”

—Sheila Bandyopadhyay

Important Details to Note Prior to Reserving Your Tickets:

  • >> This virtual production will be taking place online through a Zoom webinar.
  • >> You MUST reserve your tickets under the name and email that you will use to sign in to the virtual production.
  • >> Only one device per ticket will be allowed to join the virtual production.
  • >> In addition to the confirmation email from Brown Paper Tickets, you will receive reminder emails one week, one day, and one hour prior to the virtual production.
  • >> In the email to be sent one week prior, you will be sent a registration link for the virtual production. Reminders will be sent one day prior.
  • >> In the email to be sent one hour prior, you will receive the link to join the Zoom webinar, a virtual program, and information regarding talkbacks that will follow each performance.
  • >> It is mandatory that you provide an email address when purchasing a ticket in order to receive a link and password for the production.
  • >> Tickets sales will end two hours prior to showtime.