Saturn Returns – A Neo-Lab Presentation
Written and performed by Kurt Chiang, Tif Harrison, Lily Mooney,
Kirsten Riiber, and Andrew Tham
Directed by Elisabeth Barnick
Saturn Returns is a two-year Neo-Futuristic exploration that asks larger existential questions about time, patience, and the vast expanse of an unknowable universe. Not content simply with looking inward, Tif Harrison and ensemble look upward and outward, offering observations on the silence and solitude of space, on the uncrossable distances between celestial bodies and the intimacy of standing next to somebody you love.
“The show’s title refers to an astrological phenomenon, a person’s ‘Saturn return.’ Every 29 years, the planet Saturn completes an orbit around the sun and occupies the same point as it did almost three decades back. For every person, shortly after their 29th birthday, the planet returns to this point in the sky. Various forms of astrology tell us that as we pass this threshold, our lives are marked with extreme transitions. If I buy into this, then my own experience of this age is significant: since turning 29, I ended a serious relationship of five years. Multiple close friends have moved across the country. My mom moved to Miami from my childhood home in Michigan, and recently my dad passed away from terminal cancer. Saturn Returns will explore fears of isolation, while ironically being in a room full of people. The show asks the question, ‘When we’re afraid of being alone, why do we look up?’
– Tif Harrison, Creator
Neo-Lab is an original works residency that annually commissions one new play anchored by innovative approaches to creation. Offering public presentations and opportunities for audience interaction throughout the season, Neo-Lab supports artist retreats and stipends, public readings and presentations, and a full production the following season. During the 2015-16 season, Neo-Lab’s inaugural workshop is Ensemble Member Tif Harrison’s Saturn Returns, which will have its full production in the 2016-17 Neo-Futurist season.