Debris Upon the Forest Floor: was a multi-discipline collaborative play which involved the writing, visual art, textiles, design, music, directorship, performance, and carpentry of Madeline ffitch, Elspeth Vance, Kurt Vance, Jordan O Jordan, Sarah Lowry, and Jodi Gage, as well as poster design by Joshua Minkus. "Debris Upon the Forest Floor" was produced and toured in the spring and summer of 2012, and was documented in the Ugly Duckling Presse Emergency Index.
Debris Upon the Forest Floor
On a continually unfolding set of oak, twine, wool, perfume, and plaster of paris, “Debris Upon the Forest Floor" follows the story of a hockey goaltender who, in 1959, finally got tired of the brutality of his position. He invented the first hockey mask and wore it onto the ice. It would be fourteen years before wearing a hockey mask was anything more than a personal choice. Meanwhile, a mountain-lion circles the perimeter, and the sinister third party attempts to turn nature into a eulogy. In response, neighbors become friends, and together they seek to regain lost human skill.
Featuring masks, an elevator, glow-in-the-dark macrame, and a tiny graphic novel (one for each audience member), the play is made of salvaged materials from Appalachian Ohio and Iceland. The story is underscored by otherworldly live music, original compositions drawn from a variety of traditions, including Appalachian Hambone. “Debris Upon the Forest Floor” presents the fear that cuts both ways in a closed society, uncovers invisible true history, and upholds the vitality of small secrets. We ask the audience to become our allies, to remember, without sentiment, a time when we could run as fast as horses, when our powers of memorization were uncanny, and when we could take photographs with our eyes.
Follow this link to hear Jordan O'Jordan's original soundtrack to "Debris Upon the Forest Floor"
“Debris Upon the Forest Floor” was built in an abandoned ballroom in Nelsonville, Ohio. We are carpenters and craftspeople as well as writers and performers. We built and wired the thing ourselves from the ground up, and made it able to fold down flat, and fit in a van. We met audiences in their favorite neighborhood spaces, such as farms, music venues, storefronts, and vacant lots. This play went on a two-week tour from Southeast Ohio, to the Annex Theater in Baltimore, MD, Germantown Farm in upstate New York, Great Small Works Studio in New York City, and also toured to Amherst, MA, Providence, RI, Pittsburgh, PA, and Chicago, IL.
"Debris Upon the Forest Floor" was written by Madeline ffitch and designed by Elspeth Vance, with music written and performed by Jordan O'Jordan. All three artists built and performed this show together, with directorial assistance from Jodi Gage and Sarah Lowry.