The University Theatre | New Haven , CT | November, 2013
Yale Dramatic Association
Music and Lyrics By
Jason Robert Brown
<em>Parade</em> deals with a dark episode in our nation’s history, and brilliantly turns that story into the stuff of musical theater. Unlike most musicals, this show’s theatrical power hinges on fact rather than fiction. It’s not set in some dark dystopia, sumptuous drawing room, or storybook kingdom. Instead, the story unfolds in a quintessentially American town over the span of three Memorial Day parades just one century ago. The fantastical element of Parade is American history itself.
As we shuttled, lightning-fast, through every pocket of early-twentieth-century Atlanta from the Governor’s mansion to the chain gang, lighting defined space, created atmosphere, and told this story. By carving specific architectural shapes on the raked floor with light and transforming the US wall from an idyllic sunset to the splintering shards of a grotesque quest for misplaced vengeance, the lighting design shifted our location and perspective between public and private realms and high and low society.