The Reptile Under the Flowers
Conceived, Directed, and Designed by Janie Geiser
Music Composed by Valerie Opielski
The Reptile Under the Flowers is a walk-through peepshow/diorama performance in 12 scenes that incorporates puppetry, mechanical performing objects, small projections, music and sound to create a an intimate miniature spectacle. Performed by an ensemble of 15 performers, The Reptile Under the Flowers builds its narrative through the accumulation of small actions and events, without text or dialogue, and follows the intersecting lives of a father, mother, and son.
The audience moves in small groups through the 12 scenes in sequence (total viewing time approximately one hour). New groups of 8 enter every 12 minutes, so there are several groups watching different scenes from the performance at any given time. The audience alternates between intimate, often voyeuristic viewing, and shared events. This alternation provides a physical narrative for the viewers, who move between internal and external ways of seeing.
Valerie Opielski’s hypnotic score becomes the emotional spine of the work, suggesting a textured atmosphere of melancholy and suspense.