“Hindsight 2020” is a production that looks at a diverse group of artists from various disciplines who have created a virtual time capsule of last year – clearly a year that defies categorization. Created and directed by Rebecca Haley Clark of Santa Cruz, it will be available for viewing online for five performances between April 9 – 17.
It’s co-produced by Those Women Productions, a Berkeley-based theatre company, and Clark.
Clark explains that 2020’s global pandemic, as well as the worldwide Black Lives Matter movement, the economic downturn, wildfires, and social and political unrest all combined to form the catalyst for the creation of this production.
“We saw births, deaths, Zoom weddings, virtual graduations, glorious concerts from tiny balconies and sporting events played in stadiums full of cardboard cutouts last year,” she adds.
“As artists we wanted to provide a space for contemplation and healing, and we realized it could be found by repeating the stories we’ve been telling one another over the past year.”
Some of those stories are major and traumatic like isolation, the economic crisis, the U.S. election, and the advent of the vaccine. Others are small, yet they, too, have meaning: Learning to make a sourdough starter, plant parenting, discovering how to look and speak on a Zoom call. Many people had to figure out how to continue to be productive while working at home – sometimes in the same room as a spouse or a child in school via Zoom.
Clark, who was born and raised in Santa Cruz, has worked in New York, Brazil and Scotland. She recently completed a master’s degree at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. Her undergraduate degree, in drama and comparative ethnic students, is from Columbia University and she also received a Fulbright research grant to study Shakespeare and race studies in Rio de Janeiro.
Past productions include “The Aliens,” “The Roaring Girl” at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre in London, and “The Owl Answers.”
Clark attended Gault Elementary School and says that when she was a kindergarten there she got her first taste of Shakespeare. “Gault teacher Nancy Street always had her sixth graders perform a Shakespearean play to present to the rest of the student body. It was ‘Love’s Labor Lost’ and I was totally enthralled!”
She went on to perform in many Gault productions as well as both musicals and plays after she started attending Santa Cruz High School. “I remember that I played Friar Lawrence in ‘Romeo and Juliet,’ and I was also in ‘A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum’ and ‘Once on This Island.’ ”
Clark was also scheduled to direct one of Santa Cruz Shakespeare’s Fringe plays last year, but, she laments, “You know how that went.” (SCS’s 2020 season was canceled due to the pandemic.)
For “Hindsight 2020,” a number of theatrical artists (some local, some international) came together, each one bringing a somewhat different perspective. They include Chicago-based performer (and assistant director) Cree Noble, Cody Holliday Haefner, Gilda Mercado, Helen Swanson, Katherine Tanner Silverman, Sanjay Lago, Simone Seales, Stephanie Mareen, Rylan Gleave and Vic Rodriguez.
The suggested ticket price is $15, but all tickets are available for a pay-what-you-choose with a $1 minimum. (There’s also a 2.5% processing fee.) Twenty-five percent of all proceeds will be donated to nonprofit organizations that support vulnerable populations or those that are most affected by COVID-19.
To make a reservation, go to www.eventbrite.com/e/hindsight-2020-tickets-142622133641. A link will then be sent to ticketholders.
Show times start between 7 p.m. and 8 p.m., depending on the performance.
In addition, a GoFundMe page was established to heighten visibility of the project and to raise funds to provide at least minimum wage compensation for the artists involved in “Hindsight 2020.” The GoFundMe link is: www.gf.me/u/zkib78 .
Contact Joanne Engelhardt at [email protected]