The artists at Gob Squad have made about 30 unique performances since the group began. They will be performing a show called “We Are Gob Squad and So Are You” on Thursday, and “Revolution Now” on Friday and Saturday.
“In Current, we are really interested in offering people immersive experiences and moments where they can sort of co-create things with the artists,” said Amy Russell, the director of programming at Carolina Performing Arts.
Hence Current’s choice to book Gob Squad. Both of their upcoming performances will incorporate a great deal of audience participation, but a significant portion of “We are Gob Squad and So Are You” is scripted, whereas “Revolution Now” is largely improvised.
“'We are Gob Squad and So are You’ is a performance-lecture,” Will said. “It’s a lecture of a particular aspect of Gob Squad’s work that’s happened over the last 10 years, which is a thing called remote acting, where we basically invite people like you — the audience — to come into our works. What happens in ‘We are Gob Squad’ is that the lecture is given almost entirely by the audience.”
Remote acting means audience volunteers are fed lines to perform through earbuds.
Will explained that the group likes to cover a wide range of topics in “We are Gob Squad and So Are You.”
“We use that as a vehicle to discuss free will, identity — what makes you, you and what makes me, me,” he said.
“Revolution Now” starts with a bang.
“We occupy the theater, and say ‘We are not going to leave the theater until the world has changed,” Will said. “What’s famous about ‘Revolution Now’ is improvised structures. Every time you perform them, they change.”
Christina Rodriguez, associate director of marketing and communications at Carolina Performing Arts, commented on why the improvisational nature of their performances is so exciting to audiences around the world.
“Every performance, every evening is different,” Rodriguez said. “You could definitely come to the first night of ‘Revolution Now’ and to the second, and it’s pretty much guaranteed you would have a completely unique experience each time.”