Early on in my time in Colorado, I was introduced to a fellow theatre critic/hobbyist who asked me what types of theatre I prefer. “The weird stuff,” I told her. “Contemporary, boundary-pushing, immersive, untested. The stuff that might not work.” She told me to keep an eye on the Boulder-based theatre group The Catamounts — which I did, just in time for them to announce RAUSCH, a co-production with Control Group.
RAUSCH, which I had the great fortune to catch this week, begins at Wild Woods Brewery, which has produced a limited-edition beer inspired by the production.
From Wild Woods, 48 initiates (attendees) were bussed to a stunning park outside of Boulder.
(There was a ban on cell phones — I snuck a few pictures of the stunning park but none of the production, per The Catamounts’ request.)
Our adventure for the next 90 minutes: interact with Greek gods and take part in rituals honoring the return of Persephone — wife of Hades, daughter of Demeter — who is due to return from the underworld any moment. (From the show description: “RAUSCH’s title derives from German philosophy, describing the intoxication and loss of self we feel in the face of the power of nature.”)
It is worth noting at this point that Dan is not in attendance with me. My husband prefers a fourth-wall experience, which I respect. The elements of the show that I liked best — dancing, howling at the stars, sipping tea, making intense eye contact, piecing together the puzzle of the story, at no point knowing that would happen next — are the things that would have made Dan most uncomfortable.
Also, Dan does not share my lifelong infatuation with Greek mythology, a huge draw for me within this show. It heightened my experience, but one would not need the background to enjoy this journey — anyone would find it funny that the “no cell phones” rule was broken only once, when were encouraged to take selfies with Narcissus.
RAUSCH scratched so many theatre itches for me: improvisation, immersion, discovery, serendipity, playfulness, trust. This is my jam — a kind of art I wouldn’t mind helping to create some day, and until then, sign me up for anything The Catamounts dream up in the future.