ORLANDO – The name of this performance art trio is Living Room Theater — and yes, it means just that.
The concept is simple: rather than perform on a stage in an auditorium, how about bringing community theater directly to one’s own living room?
On Saturday, Oct. 29, Michael Freeman, the editor and publisher of Freeline Media, will open the doors of his home in the Colonialtown North neighborhood in Orlando to host a special performance by Living Room Theater.
“What is Living Room Theater?” notes a release by the theater group that pioneered this concept. “Paths of absurdity, raw truth and love intersect as Bear, Otter and Dog invite you into a living room to share vignettes reflecting upon our humanity. Through pensive to comical conversations, experimental performance pieces and live instrumentals, a story emerges. No two shows alike.”
The trio consists of Tisse Mallon as Bear, Jack Graham as Dog and Banks Helfrich as Otter. As Helfrich has noted, performing in someone’s living room — whether it is spacious or cozy — provides audiences with a sense of intimacy, connection and familiarity.
“We are immersive theater and not participatory,” he said.
Freeman noted that he caught one of their performances last May, when Living Room Theater performed as part of the Orlando International Fringe Theater festival. They did, in fact, perform in a living room — the home of Orlando playwright Al Pergande — rather than at the Lowndes Shakespeare Center.
“I loved their work,” Freeman said, “and more importantly, I loved the concept: taking theater off the traditional stage and creating art in a unique setting. Knowing that the trio was eagerly looking for new homes to perform in, I happily volunteered mine.”
Living Room Theater was formed in 2015 and has already performed in more than 55 living rooms across Central Florida, doing improvisational vignettes on the nature of humanity.
“Our vignettes provoke a questioning of what we value and believe,” Helfrich said, adding that this is an “ongoing project which we seek to take on tour to living rooms across the globe.”
Living Room Theater will be performing at Michael Freeman’s Colonialtown North home at 1503 E. Marks St. on Saturday, Oct. 29 at 7:30 p.m. There is plenty of free street parking on LaSalle Avenue. There will be complimentary wine and Hors d’oeuvres served to the audience.
Because of the small, but warm and comfortable, size of Freeman’s home, seating will be limited to the first 20 people to arrive.
Freeman said he hopes to host other experimental theater groups, new play readings, and other performance artists in the future as well. Interested artists can contact him at FreelineOrlando@gmail.com.
Contact Freeline Media at Freelineorlando@gmail.com..