Elephant Room is the second in a trilogy of theater pieces that embrace and subvert American popular entertainment. The piece is about illusion, delusion and the role of deception in American culture. Rainpan 43, the absurdist team of Sobelle/Lyford, collaborates for the first time with Cuiffo, an accomplished magician and actor, to create original illusions, dance numbers and magic routines. The show embraces and pokes fun at the sparkling world of stage magic to unearth the latent poetics contained within. By completely entering the form, Elephant Room becomes more than a show ”about” magic—it is itself a magic show. Elephant Room is an art project that celebrates what is both “true” and “false” in live performance. Sobelle, Lyford and Cuiffo hope to push ”magic” using the expressive possibilities of theater and live performance, and, inversely, to explore what happens when performers fully immerse themselves in a new form. And, of course, they also hope to blow your mind clear out the back of your skull with some rad-ass magic.
Geoff Sobelle is the Co-Artistic Director of rainpan 43. He is a Philadelphia-based theatre artist, where he is a company member of Pig Iron Theatre Company, an Obie Award-winning ensemble-based physical theatre company. Geoff was awarded an Independence Foundation Fellowship and grants from the Philadelphia Theatre Initiative to create all wear bowlers, (Innovative Theatre Award, Drama Desk nomination), the rube-goldberg-inspired kinetic junk play, machines machines machines machines machines machines machines, and produce a doomsday clown-show entitled, Flesh and Blood and Fish and Fowl. He was named “Best Theatre Artist 2004” in Philadelphia Magazine. Geoff received a 2006 Pew Fellowship in the Arts as a performance artist. He is a graduate of Stanford University and trained at École Jacques Lecoq in Paris, France.
Trey Lyford is Co-Artistic Director of the physical theatre company rainpan 43, whose productions include all wear bowlers, Amnesia Curiosa, and machines, machines, machines, machines, machines, machines, machines. He has performed in LA’s Center Theatre Group, La Jolla Playhouse, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, HBO Aspen Comedy Fest, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Folger Theatre, and London’s Gate Theatre. He is also an Associate Artist with the Obie-Award winning company The Civilians and has created original pieces with Philadelphia’s Pig Iron and San Francisco’s Joe Goode Performance Group. He has received a Princess Grace Award as well as the Fabergé Theatre Excellence Award.
New York, NY
Steve Cuiffo is an actor and magician who creates solo shows and works collaboratively with a range of artists. A co-founder of the collaborative Rainpan 43, his original magic-theater works include Steve Cuiffo Is Lenny Bruce at Joe’s Pub in New York, and The Amazing Russello Magic Hour. His performing credits include Radiohole’s Fluke, The Foundry Theatre’s Major Bang and The Roaring Girle; Donald Byrd’s Byrdlesque, and Tea Alegic’s The Filament Cycle.