Fatman: “I breed humans for their function and they have become a brick wall called cities. Staggering medias of grief. They are boring realities. Oh well. Where’s the food. But I only eat power and cities. Women ah women. Humans are becoming obsolete.”
“Welcome aboard. We’re going to travel through my land. The land of dream nods and hyper active mind states. On your right you see the commodities traders, they are hard at work, keeping my economy strong. Wave everybody…”
Man#2: “Feel good opiate, Feel good blunt. This is the life of the mighty slave. In the commerce of the street maffia, on the sweet tit of democracy. Me and the tooth fairy, handing out dreams on the corner in the fatmans world.”
Woman#1: “I am searching for bliss. I’m the ultimate commercial in the conscious mind where god lives on TV and everything is mine. Bliss on the run run through miles and eons of TVs…”
man#3: “… the devil is hip, he has the ultimate weapon… cool. He donates money to the privileged. They say we blessed, we blessed. He got a problem with the so called third world. They want to revolt so now he’s on TV, running for office. He got a cell phone in his ear. He looks good … says we need to crack skulls and lock the body, make streets safe…”
Woman#2: “I’m a superhero. I don’t need social security or health care. I got a big heart which is my supergun…”
Man#1: “… It was raining memories of old lovers of regret and fear, old money and women raining on the desert where I buried my soul. And it was time to dance, and I forgot her name. Her breasts straining for my kiss and the rain was penetrating the fog. And I knew this must be love…”
“… came the death of the fatman. Where I have a contract with words, where my truthboils my tongue. In the incarcerated air of men, where I face my enemies with trickery and guile. That which I call love…”
“My Eyes Are The Cage In My Head” written and directed by Ron Allen, is a performance work about the effect of colonization and recurring behavior in a parallel universe of power and subordination. The play examines the language and context of character and ideas that creates class, superficial beauty, paranoia, quantity and addiction. This work seeks to stimulate discussion and public discourse about personal and social transformation.
Ron Allen is a poet, playwright and teacher who lives and works in Los Angeles. This work depicts the reality of a tethered humanity in search of itself through desire and self-destructive relationships. Allen subverts language to teach and deconstruct social models and create visions of new worlds. This project continues LAPD’s relationship with Allen, building on the 2006 production of “Fried Poetry”, presented at Beyond Baroque Literary Arts Center and Skid Row’s James Wood Community Center. Allen also taught in LAPD ‘s 2007 summer changeXchange workshop.
‘Ron Allen’s raw, ultra-poetic examination of the African American experience rips into its targets to locate the true nature of freedom within one archetypal black man’s mind.’ – LA WEEKLY
ABOUT SKID ROW
Skid Row Los Angeles is the poorest area in the city. Skid Row Los Angeles has the largest concentration of homeless people of any neighborhood in the US. Despite its poverty, Skid Row is an amazing place with amazing human and community strengths:
• Skid Row LA has the largest concentration of the most affordable housing in Los Angeles County.
• Skid Row has the largest concentration and most comprehensive set of services for homeless people in Los Angeles.
• Skid Row is the biggest recovery culture anywhere. Skid Row’s highly developed drug recovery consciousness includes free recovery programs and numerous AA, NA and CA groups.
The Skid Row community has long been a generative site for visionary answers to social problems. These visionary initiatives have come about through individual and collective concern by community members and moments of enlightened public policy and visionary NGO efforts. Largely underappreciated is the extent to which the visionary efforts have been the work of community members. Without the civic engagement of citizens of Skid Row, the housing stock would not have been preserved, the people and social services would have been dispersed and the Safe Haven recovery community would not exist.
Michelle Autry — narrator Tony Parker — fatman KevinMichael Key — man #1 represents the mind of the possessive lover Ronnie Walker — man #2 represents the mind of addiction especially drugs Riccarlo Porter — man #3 represents the mind of paranoia SS Jones — man #4 represents the mind of silenced lack and oppression
Henriëtte Brouwers — woman #1 represents the mind of quantity and division Sarah Cruse — woman #2 represents the mind of surface beauty Ron Allen is a poet, playwright and teacher who lives and works in Los Angeles. Allen subverts language to teach, deconstruct social models and create visions of new worlds. Peter Glassberg: Creative Tech. Services. Pamela Miller Macias: Pictures.
LAPD’s production of “my eyes are the cage in my head” is funded in part by the City of LA Cultural Affairs Department and the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional funders of LAPD include the Animating Democracy Initiative of Americans for the Arts, with funding from the Kellog Foundation; The Creating Public Value program of the California Arts Council and the Los Angeles County Arts Commission; and The National Endowment for the Arts – Theater Program.
The Robert F. Kennedy Performance Project, is a series of public conversations and activities centered around the real-time, site-specific intermedia performance that recreated, on September 9th and 10th 2004, Robert Kennedy’s two-day, 200 mile “poverty tour” of southeastern Kentucky in 1968. An Appalshop project directed by John Malpede.
Visit the Robert F. Kennedy Performance Project web site.
Founded in 1985 by director-performer-activist John Malpede, Los Angeles Poverty Department (LAPD) is a non-profit arts organization, the first performance group in the nation made up principally of homeless people, and the first arts program of any kind for homeless people in Los Angeles. LAPD creates performances and multidisciplinary artworks that connect the experience of people living in poverty to the social forces that shape their lives and communities. LAPD’s works express the realities, hopes, dreams and rights of people who live and work in L.A.’s Skid Row.
Skid Row History Museum & Archive
250 S. Broadway, Los Angeles CA 90012
PO Box 26190
Los Angeles, CA 90026
John Malpede: John[@]lapovertydept.org
Henriëtte Brouwers: Henriette[@]lapovertydept.org