Monkeying Around at The Red Room, May 2017

The Story of the Monkey King

On May 20, at the Red Room, we had a performance. The name of the play was “The Monkey King.” I was one of the monkeys. My sister and many others were also there. The Monkey King was played by Max.
The story happens in ancient China, thousands and thousands of years ago. There was darkness and chaos. Then, the earth, the moon and the sky were created. On one of the mountains, there was a pregnant stone. One day, it split open and gave birth to a monkey. This monkey made friends with all the animals. Later, the other monkeys made him their king.
It was much fun!

By Petru Luca


Monkeying Around at The Red Room

On a Friday night, as my dad was checking his Facebook, he found some info about “The Monkey King,” a Red Room play for kids under nine. When he told Petru (my brother) about this, he was quite excited. I sighed quietly, because I love everything about drama and plays—but I am twelve, so I couldn’t be part of this show.

Two weeks later, things began for real. We went to the Red Room for Petru to practice. There we met Max, a smart kid, always in high spirits. There was also Victor, a shy boy, Adam, his father, Esther and Minka, Rachel, and also Cindy and Sharon. I thought that this whole play thing was pretty childish (that’s because I was really jealous, of course) … until Ruth, the author of the script and the director, asked me to join in. This made me feel fantastic! Then, during the next rehearsals, I was really into it. I shared some of my ideas with the class. I tried my best to memorize the lines. It was fun!

Finally, after much work, performance day came. I was nervous. Then, I thought that I shouldn’t be that stiff! After all, this was for fun and we wanted to make the kids coming to see us really enjoy themselves. And then the play started! Alas, it also ended much too quickly! We got much applause and people kept on saying: “I totally loved it!” At the very end, Ruth had a surprise for us—tiny little crowns! She put them on our heads and crowned us as princes and princesses!

This is, dear readers, my short account of those wonderful days. Now the curtain must fall, and so this is

of my text.

By Alexandra Luca

The Word from R4

The Monkey King at Stage Time and Juice XXIII (May 20, 2017)

Six kids, aged 6 – 12 plus two fathers plus two adults with performing experience joined forces to depict the opening scenes of the epic legend: The Journey to the West.
With words, our expressive bodies, music and a few found objects, we presented a rendition of the origin of The Monkey King from the ancient Chinese tale.

The children creatively used their bodies and voices in expressive interpretive dance to depict Chaos (before the Earth was formed), then the planets and, finally, the Immortal Stone from which the Stone Monkey was born. Then the players transformed into the animals who greeted the Stone Monkey and then again into the monkeys who eventually became the subjects of the Handsome Monkey King.

Full album can be viewed here:
Stage Time & Juice 23:Monkeys and Mischief

According to legend, as the monkeys played in a stream, they wondered where the water came from. They followed the stream to a waterfall. We used a length of pale blue fabric, leading it out across and around the playing area. The fathers held one end up high to create the image of a waterfall while the children ducked under: playing in the “water”.
Most of the spoken words came from our Narrators but the children had key lines that gave the performance life and moved the story along.

Our music sources were recordings of traditional Chinese bamboo flute and guzheng, contemporary Japanese sound-collage and the Big Band (1940’s American Swing) classic “Sing, Sing, Sing.”

The young lad who took the title role, wrote the following reflection on his experience:

It was mind boggling to mEEE just dancing around and actually be King and do this amazing stuff! My favorite parts are jumping in and out from the waterfall and when they say “Long live our great king!”. It was fun in many ways! The top three of my favorite things in this Monkey King production are: 1. Muffins, 2. Rehearsals, 3. Having fun doing everything. I like Ms. Ruth shows us how to do teamwork, we had a good team. I learned how to remember lines and do the theatrics. I also learned how to move around projecting my voice. I love to share my ideas with everybody, too. Of course, I love to do this again, because there were cupcakes and muffins, AND because I can participate in the performance. I like to perform, and I want to do another performance in the next one. ~ Max

Two additional performing Juicers wrote about their experiences. You can read them here…”

And, finally, a drawing by Juicer Charlotte Jade

And that’s the eNews for May 2017
from the Red Room, the culture of listening and sharing.

Hello from the sound crew of the Monkey King!

The March Hare, STJ April 2017

There is no predicting how a Stage Time and Juice show will come together. We usually start by throwing around themes that have to do with the month. Alliteration is always a plus. Sometimes we will approach someone to do some sort of activity or performance within the show, and we will build around that. The theming is not always central to the event, but on the occasion where the separate participants coalesce around it, magic begins to take place.

Let’s not feign total innocence with the selection of last month’s theme of “The March Hare”: we knew that Ruth Landowne Giordano had staged the Reader’s Theater production of “A Mad Tea Party,” Chapter 7 from Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland in the past. We had a sneaky feeling that if we dangled the title in front of her, she wouldn’t allow this opportunity to slide by. As it turns out, not only was Ruth game to revive it, but she wanted to update it with a twist: by incorporating some Juicers as readers. As she explained, “I think the addition of the children will make the production quite sweet.”

Once the decision of hosting a mad tea party had been set, we transformed the event into a British high tea by serving up scones made from KP Kitchen’s wonderful mix, decked out with clotted cream and jam. We also provided “Drink-Me” punch, a concoction whose recipe is known only to the alchemists of the Red Room. Unfortunately, the punch was a grand failure: none of the Juicers changed their shapes or sizes, although it may have had some contribution to transforming some of the guests into performers.

A few weeks before the event, we received a most unusual request: a mother was wondering whether she could hold a birthday party celebration at Juice. This gave us pause: we had never thought to combine our stage event with a private celebration. On the other hand, the temptation of holding a real birthday party within a staged tea party was too much of a temptation to resist. The Mad Hatter and the March Hare would have appreciated the flipping inside out of the situation. Once we had acquiesced, mom Nomita signed off with the curious remark: “I like this theme.”

Photo by Jean-Jacques Chen

It turns out she is an artist who sculpts in cake and fondant: she showed up with a remarkable stacked tower of a cake, covered with Alice in Wonderland motifs. It took her two days to shape and paint it. Needless to say, the Juicers demolished it in minutes. Unfortunately, that’s the way it goes with us: we know a good thing when we see it, and we consume it.

The show itself began with our open mic lineup. There were many first-time visitors on the stage, who tenuously shared poems and jokes. One boy performed a spectacular Indian dance, complete with cool dude sunglasses. Two siblings introduced a game, and invited audience members up on the stage to get slapped on the hand. Another sang a sad love ballad while she played the guitar. One girl played a musical piece on the keyboard.

Constance Woods tried to teach us how to dance the Pata-Pata in five minutes. Due to our failure to fully grasp the subtleties of her performance, she has agreed to return and get us all wash wiping and hopping in proper South African form in May.

The show ended with the performance of “A Mad Tea Party.” We were amazed at how polished the junior Juicers looked next to their talented R4 counterparts.

There is a link to the YouTube of the entire “A Mad Tea Party” performance and some footage and photos of this special event on our Stage Time and Juice Facebook page. Although it’s nice to look at pictures to try to understand what is going on, we heartily recommend that you to come to our events in person to experience for yourself the indescribable.

And that’s what you missed at Stage Time and Juice!

Carol Yao

18 March 2017 STJuice XXII: The March Hare

Saturday, March 18 at 2:30 PM – 4:30 PM

中文說明請點擊下方詳閱

STAGE TIME AND JUICE at the Red Room XXII: The March Hare

March Hare: Have some more tea?
Alice: I haven’t had any yet, so I can’t take more.
March Hare: You mean you can’t take less. It is very easy to take more than nothing.

–Alice in Wonderland (1933)

What better way to celebrate March Madness than with your friends at Stage Time and Juice? We invite everyone to come and take the stage for 5 minutes to share something funny or wise with a song, dance, joke, or story!

This time we will have special guest artist Constance Woods dance us down the path of folly!

Ruth Giordano will also return with some of the Juicers large and small to bring us an animated recounting of The Mad Tea Party from Alice in Wonderland!

There will be a signup sheet at the door for those who wish to share. Everyone else is welcome to sit back and enjoy the friendship.

In order to lighten everyone’s load, we will no longer be hosting our community table. However, Drink Me Potion and Tea Party scones will be available for purchase at Bessie, the Red Room Bar.

Suggested age: 5-99

Contribution: NT150 per adult, NT 100 per child (ages 5-18) to cover cleaning costs.

STAGE TIME AND JUICE at the Red Room: 家庭聆聽分享會

為了慶祝瘋狂三月兔,我們準備精彩魔術以及非洲舞蹈,與您一同狂歡。
邀請各位上台表演5分鐘,分享歌曲、舞蹈、笑話及故事。

如想參加者可至入口櫃台登記,也歡迎大家一起來觀看聆聽其他人的表演。

這一次我們特別邀請到藝術家Constance Woods帶領我們走上愚蠢的道路!

Ruth Giordano偕同一些大人、小朋友重返舞台,帶來愛麗絲夢遊仙境中精彩片段-瘋狂茶會。

為使各位能更輕鬆便利參加,我們會在紅房吧檯提供付費式的點心及果汁。

建議年齡:5-99歲

活動日期與時間:3月18日(六) 2:30 pm – 4:30pm

清潔費:大人NT$150 ;小孩 (5-18歲) NT$100

Stage Time and Juice 是紅房(Red room)社群與 Taipei City Playgroup 共同舉辦的活動,主要是為了鼓勵小朋友們能發揮創意及步入探索的道路。 活動主要以英文進行,參加的小朋友們可以有機會聆聽故事、欣賞表演、分享彼此的才華與想法。歡迎一起加入我們的大家庭,倒點果汁,隨意找個位子坐下,和我們的夥伴們一同學習,一同分享這個多元化的平台。 活動當天在櫃台會有報名表,讓勇敢的小朋友們可登記上台朗讀、表演歌舞、魔術、短劇或講故事及笑話等。

活動地點:國防部空軍司令部舊址 圖書館 2 樓
台北市大安區建國南路一段177號 (濟南路與建國南路交叉口)No. 177, Sec. 1, Jianguo S. Rd (Intersection of Jianguo S. Rd. and Jinan Rd.

Hosts: RED ROOM www.redroom.com.tw and The Taipei City Playgroup

January 2017: Stage Time and Juice

Stage time & Juice 21

Stage Time and Juice XXI kicked off 2017 with the theme of storytelling. Various stories, true and fictional, took the Juicers up, down, and around the bend.

Nicole and Carol began the show with a retelling of the acidic encounter between a lemon and a lime. The exchange led one of the fruits to cross the road.

Once the sour mood had cleared the air, high schooler Valen shared her experience as a junior representative of Taiwan. This exchange apparently led her to cross the Atlantic in a pair of 10 cm heels.

Sensing the high spirits, overtone singer Mark van Tongeren led the Juicers on a roller coaster exploration of the musical tones that one hears when one travels up and down the vowel sounds.

Charlotte and Bea described life from the perspective of a book.

Brian then sent us all into the cutting edge of the present with his science fiction novel, Shift, with Whitney reading.

To reground us, cookies and hot cocoa were dispensed during the break by Betsy the Bar.

After the break, Jennifer advised us that if you can’t take the guitar, then learn the ukulele! (Red Roomers apparently will have a chance to do so in March! Shhhhh!) She then sang a sunny song.

Kai played a couple of pensive tunes on the keyboard.

Nicole and Julian encouraged us all to lighten up and dance.

And then, to the delight of the audience, Ruth and the Aesop’s Fables troupe took the stage, presenting us with words of wisdom for the new year. Tales presented: The Tortoise and the Hare, The Little Red Hen, The Fox and the Grapes, Two Travelers and a Bear, and A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing. The children played multiple parts with lots of giggles and smiles, and ridiculous props. Jonah’s performance of a tree came across as quite wooden.

And that’s what you missed at Stage Time and Juice!

Carol Yao

Working Together: Impressions of Stage Time and Juice and R4

161204 1st Aesops rehearsal 2 from Red Room on Vimeo.

Ruth Landowne Giordano recently shared with us her impressions about leading the 5-week workshop to produce “Aesop’s Fables,” the second dramatic collaboration between Red Room Radio Redux and Stage Time and Juice. (The first one, “Jack and the Beanstalk” was presented at the anniversary celebrations just this past November.)

Ruth traditionally works with an adult cast to produce radio adaptations of classic literary tales such as “Dracula,” “Treasure Island,” and “A Christmas Carol.” She believes storytelling is an important way to keep alive certain aspects of culture, and to also teach valuable lessons. Her decision to involve children in the storytelling was because “children can bring a lot of imagination and energy to the performance.”

This is the first time she has worked with a bi-lingual group of children, with varying levels of proficiency in the English language. She selected Aesop’s tales and “The Little Red Hen” because she assumed that the children would have some degree of familiarity with these stories. Some of the children felt a little intimidated with speaking out in a less familiar language. Ruth worked around this by teaching them to express the story through body movements and sounds other than words. “All around I wanted it to be a playful time.” She hopes that the exercises that she took them through will open up alternatives to the more “reticent” kids.

When asked what she might do differently next time, she said she would not hold the workshop over such an extended period of time (five weeks with a two-week break for Christmas in between) because precious momentum is lost. She would also think more about how she can reach out to the children who might have confidence issues, working around her own pressure to meet a performance deadline.

Happily, Ruth is already dreaming about what the next production might be. Make sure you follow us on the Stage Time and Juice Facebook page, so that you don’t miss the next development! https://www.facebook.com/redroomjuice/

by Carol Yao

21 January 2017, STJuice XXI: Aesop’s and Other Tales

STAGE TIME AND JUICE at the Red Room XXII: Aesops and Other Tales

Let’s kick off the new year by sharing a little of life’s wisdom! We invite everyone to come and take the stage for 5 minutes to share something funny or wise with a song, dance, joke, or story!

There will be a signup sheet at the door for those who wish to share. Everyone else is welcome to sit back and enjoy the companionship.

Ruth Giordano, director of Red Room Radio Redux, will also lead a group of Juicers in relating several of Aesop’s fables.

In order to lighten everyone’s load, we will no longer be hosting our community table. However, hot chocolate and juice will be available for purchase at the Bessie, the Red Room Bar.

Suggested age: 5-99

Contribution: NT150 per adult, NT 100 per child (ages 5-18) to cover cleaning costs.

STAGE TIME AND JUICE at the Red Room: 家庭聆聽分享會

讓我們迎接嶄新的一年,來分享生活中的趣味及智慧!
邀請各位上台表演5分鐘,分享歌曲、舞蹈、笑話及故事。

如想參加者可至入口櫃台登記,也歡迎大家一起來觀看聆聽其他人的表演。

導演兼紅房音控師 Ruth Giordano,也將帶領他們兒童團隊表演伊索寓言的戲劇。

為使各位能更輕鬆便利參加,我們會在紅房吧檯提供付費式的點心及果汁。

建議年齡:5-99歲

活動日期與時間:1月21日(六) 2:30 pm – 4:30pm

清潔費:大人NT$150 ;小孩 (5-18歲) NT$100

Stage Time and Juice 是紅房(Red room)社群與 Taipei City Playgroup 共同舉辦的活動,主要是為了鼓勵小朋友們能發揮創意及步入探索的道路。 活動主要以英文進行,參加的小朋友們可以有機會聆聽故事、欣賞表演、分享彼此的才華與想法。歡迎一起加入我們的大家庭,倒點果汁,隨意找個位子坐下,和我們的夥伴們一同學習,一同分享這個多元化的平台。 活動當天在櫃台會有報名表,讓勇敢的小朋友們可登記上台朗讀、表演歌舞、魔術、短劇或講故事及笑話等。

活動地點:國防部空軍司令部舊址 圖書館 2 樓
台北市大安區建國南路一段177號 (濟南路與建國南路交叉口)No. 177, Sec. 1, Jianguo S. Rd (Intersection of Jianguo S. Rd. and Jinan Rd.

Hosts: RED ROOM and The Taipei City Playgroup