WE'RE GONNA DIE by Young Jean Lee
Chicago —Theatre Y is proud to present a film re-imagining of WE’RE GONNA DIE, Young Jean Lee’s poignant and life-affirming stage play-cum-indie rock concert in which a female singer alternates can-you-top-this stories of the awfulness of life with sweet, peppy tunes like “Lullaby for the Miserable” and “Horrible Things.” Reviewing the 2011 premiere production, Christopher Isherwood of the New York Times made WE’RE GONNA DIE a critic’s pick and called it “a kind of collective consolation for life’s unavoidable woes.”
Starting September 18 Theatre Y will release online its unique take on WE’RE GONNA DIE, a film conceived for our current state of social isolation. A team of 12 artists rehearsed, composed, designed, recorded, shot, edited and produced this film remotely, with each artist navigating how to work from their home. The film includes freshly re-imagined versions of the show’s original songs by composer Kyle Gregory Price, orchestrated for a contemporary chamber ensemble that includes pedal steel guitar and harpsichord amongst its instruments.
As the global pandemic continues to claim lives and ravage communities, denying us the gift of shared presence, we want to offer a visual meditation on absence, a musical memento mori that helps us mourn what has been lost and find comfort in the beauty of what we still have.
This film will be released September 18-October 4, much like a normal theatrical run (Fri-Sun at 7pm) only virtually. The audience will be invited to RSVP (for free!) for a particular showing, and will enter into a virtual lobby with that evening's guests, watch the film individually, and re-convene for our traditional talk-back session over zoom.