"Cupola Bobber carry their home, their universe, on their backs - a cosmology part kaijin [Japanese film effects monster], part Buster Keaton. They make a place for performance in the twenty-first century." Matthew Goulish

Bio

Cupola Bobber is a collaboration between Stephen Fiehn and Tyler B. Myers, now Brooklyn-based. Founded in 2000 - in Chicago - they have created four evening length performances, working slowly. They have performed in multiple venues in Chicago, in Portland and New York, and toured internationally. Alongside the evening-length performance work they have made video, durational performance, and published writing.

They have been MacDowell Colony fellows, ACE International Fellows at the Nuffield Theatre, Lancaster University, they have served as visiting artists for SAIC's First Year Program and Goat Island's Summer School, and have conducted collaborative performance devising workshops for participants of all stripes.

Way Out West, the Sea Whispered Me was commissioned by PS122 in NYC, Links Hall in Chicago, and the National Performance Network. Petitmal received a Best of PAC/edge award, and they won a pair of Nelson Raymond Fellowships from The School of the Art Institute with their BFA's in 2001. The current show titled The Field, The Mantel, their fifth, is a commision of the Schillertage Festival at the Nationaltheatre Mannheim.

Press Quotes

On The Field, The Mantel, 2011

"This is an uncanny performance, and one Chicago should embrace... Four Stars." - Ryan Dolley, Time Out Chciago

"What makes their work so compelling are the additional elements of Cupola Bobber's homemade, minimal visual aesthetic and their charmingly inelegant, often hamhanded choreographed movements. This combination of the physically gawky and the elegance of their theoretical and philosophical explorations results in an absurdity that's both very funny and profoundly humane." - Monica Westin, New City Chicago

On Way Out West, the Sea Whispered Me, 2009

"Plodding through their risible, makeshift world, hoisting big, ugly tarps to approximate sweeping landscapes, these lugs wax oafishly poetic on the sea's paradoxical power to sustain life and erode civilizations. Like Laurel and Hardy, the mismatched pair (Myers is all diligence, Fiehn all inertia) express a stumbling kind of grace, striving to squeeze profundity from artfully inadequate materials." Justin Hayford, Chicago Reader Critic's Choice

"A few of the show’s jokes are like darts flying right past your ear to thunk into a bull’s eye on the wall behind your head, but most of the punchlines are revealed like the pale, soft bodies of victims slowly stripping off their clothes at gunpoint. I imagined what Samuel Beckett doing standup would be. It’s transfixing, feels very new and, like the rest of the work, I really enjoyed it." Blog: trailerpilot

On The Man Who Pictured Space From His Apartment, 2007

“… this pair of Chicago-based 30-year-olds can lay claim to a special talent for alternative performance-making of disarmingly odd, cosmic charm.”, “Four Stars” – Donald Hutera, The Times of London

On Petitmal, 2004

“…the performers' palpable intelligence and understated wit make Petitmal work beautifully much of the time.” – Kerry Reid, Chicago Reader Critic’s Choice

“Throughout, the artful use of shadow, space, and dime-store props (they make great use, in particular, of the sound of an electric fan miked at a distance) create a haunting and thoroughly original imaginative atmosphere.” - John Beer, New City

On Subterfuge, 2001

“We grip our chair, our breathing changes, we itch, and we feel nauseous and/or euphoric. There is something very satisfying about becoming physically exhausted while sitting quietly and watching something. Near the end of the piece, when the performers have tossed themselves through an endless cycle of dances, tackles and falls, the collapse on the floor in sweaty, weary heaps only to fly up into the most dynamic and physically demanding of all the dances at the first notes of James Brown's "Get Up." Now we straight up love these guys as they rise from the dead to do an ass kicking hysterical, funk dance hybrid.” – Holly Abney, Disconnect Arts Journal

 

CV

Click For PDF download of full CV(95KB)  

Highly abridged:

Selected Performances and Exhibitions

2012

Solo Gallery Show, ADDS/DONNA, Chicago

2011

Public Question Library, Steirischer Herbst Festiva, Graz, Austria

The Field, The Mantel: Performance, Nationaltheatre Mannheim Schillertage Festival, Mannheim, Germany

The Field, The Mantel: Reading the Library of Congress Classification Schedule to the Trees, Nationaltheatre Mannheim Schillertage Festival, Mannheim, Germany

The Field, The Mantel: Performance, Cupola Bobber Studio, Chicago

2010

The Field, The Mantel: Reading the Library of Congress Classification Schedule to the Trees, The Doers The Drifters The Dreamers Festival, Manchester, UK

Wave Machine #2, In Between Time Festival, Bristol, UK

Way Out West, the Sea Whispered Me (WOW,tSWM), Fall UK tour:Chelsea Theatre, London; Warwick Theatre, Bristol; The Basement, Brighton; Northumbria University, Newcastle; University Theatre, Leeds; Aberystwyth Arts Centre, Aberystwyth; Axis Arts Centre, Crewe; University of Plymouth, Plymouth; Warwick Arts Centre, Coventry

The Man Who Pictured Space From His Apartment (TMWPSFHA), Plateaux Festival, Küstlerhaus Mousonturm, Frankfurt

WOW,tSWM Spring UK tour:Nuffield Theatre, Lancaster; Green Room, Manchester; Exeter Phoenix, Exeter; Chichester Showroom, Chichester

2009

WOW,tSWM, PS122, New York, NY
WOW,tSWM, Fusebox Festival, Austin, TX
WOW,tSWM, Links Hall, Chicago, IL

[see full CV download for 2000 - 2008]

Publications

2010 The Dictionary of Endurative Actions: The Drama Review: Spring 2010
2009 Way Out West, the Sea Whispered Me: A Reading Companion, 24X36” text based double-sided poster
2007 Exhibition Catalogue, CUE Art Foundation, New York, NY
Monologue for One Performer Taking One Step, Slowly, contribution to SLOW, a handmade artists book anthology on slow published and edited by Ian Abbott
2005 A Conversation in 50 Jumps Using A Trampoline and A Cliff, contribution to Jump, a handmade artists book anthology on jumping published and edited by Ian Abbott

Commissions

2011 Public Question Library, Steirischer Herbst Festival
Nationaltheatre Mannheim Schillertage Festival
2008 NPN Creation Fund commission with Links Hall, PS122

Awards and Honors

2012 Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Swing Space Residency
2010 Arts Council England Grant for the Arts (with the Nuffield Theatre, Lancaster)
MacDowell Colony Fellowship
Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Small Theater Grant
2008 Arts Council England Grant for the Arts (with the Nuffield Theatre, Lancaster)
2007 07/08 Arts Council England International Fellows, Nuffield Theatre, Lancaster University, Lancaster, UK
2005 Best of PAC/Edge Award Winner
2004 Honorary Mention, Best of PAC/edge Awards
2001 Nelson Raymond Fellowship, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago

Teaching / Academics

2010 Cupola Bobber Workshop, Northumbria University, Manchester Metropolitan University, Warwick University, University of Sussex, Leeds Metropolitan University, University of Leeds, Bristol University
2009 Cupola Bobber Workshop, Links Hall, Chicago
INTERLINK Visiting Artist, School of the Art Institute of Chicago
2008 Cupola Bobber Discuss Their Work, Through Goat Island's Archive, lecture, Bristol University, part of the Performing the Archive series
Workshops: Alsager, Dartington, University of Leeds, Leeds Met, Roehampton
Cupola Bobber Workshop, week-long residential, LanternHouse International, Ulverston, UK
Invited Presenter, Goat Island: Lastness, raiding the archive, and pedagogical practices in performance, Nuffield Theatre, Lancaster University, UK
2007 Cupola Bobber Workshop, Nuffield Theatre, Lancaster, UK
2005 Visiting Artist, First Year Program, Springboard Series, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago,
2003 Visiting Artist, Goat Island Summer School, Chicago

 

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