"I was spellbound by the poetry and dance that lifts this show onto the stage." - Patron
*Recommended for ages 16 and up
This show contains one instance of nudity in Act 1
Thursdays - Saturdays at 7:30, and Sundays at 5pm.
Doors open 30 mins before the show.
Location: Shaking the Tree Warehouse, 823 SE Grant St. (Corner of SE 9th & Grant)
If you need extra assistance or have questions, please EMAIL us or call the box-office at 503.235.0635
Nicole Accuardi, Claire Aldridge, Chris Harder*, Matthew Kerrigan, Jamie Rea, Rebecca Ridenour, Beth Thompson, Isabella Villagomez, Katie Watkins, Nikki Weaver*, and Kathleen Worley*
*Member of Actors Equity Association
Jenny Ampersand, Annalise Albright-Woods, Ted Gold, Rhiza Architecture & Design, Trevor Sargent, Natasha Stockem, Samantha Van Der Merwe
What People are saying:
"Making ordinary things seem strange is one of the best things good art can do, but too often, theater companies play it so safe that it’s all but impossible to truly evoke a sense of dislocation from the everyday. Shaking the Tree isn’t one of those theater companies..." -Megan Burbank, the Portland Mercury
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"If you're looking for Portland's most creative theatre, Shaking the Tree productions are always in the running. And the current show is no exception."
-Krista Garver- Broadway World
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"It's a stick, not an axe, and it doesn't even touch Nikki Weaver's outstretched wrists when Chris Harder (playing her dad) lowers it with a bang to mime chopping off Weaver's hands. Still, you can't help but flinch at her harrowing screams that last for a very disturbing 30 seconds..." -Shannon Gormley, Willamette Week
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"If you faint at the sight of stage blood or fall asleep at the mere thought of Greek tragedy, this play won’t be for you. But if you are a grownup who loves the entire month of October, The Craft, or the original Wicker Man before Nicolas Cage ruined everything, Head. Hands. Feet will be the adult equivalent of “Disney’s Halloween Treat.” -Megan Burbank, Portland Mercury
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"Shaking the Tree’s Storytelling Magic. Artistic director Samantha Van Der Merwe on displacement and dismemberment." -Interview with Jason Buehrer of Portland Monthly
"Moving, exciting, timeless and timely." -Patron
"Head.Hands.Feet at Shaking the Tree provides yet another example of the beauty and power of theatre. Turned in the hands of some of the finest theatre artists I know, this amazing piece of work stirs those emotions that have existed in us since the beginning of time--fear, love, joy, despair, selfishness, compassion, and more. The physical life of this play is astounding and the actors have built a beautiful, visceral, living artifact." -Patron
"Wanted to give a shout out for the great and provocative work being done, once again, at Shaking The Tree Theatre. Congratulations on this exploration of stories of female dismemberment. Deeply intriguing and disturbing, executed, as always, with great art." -Patron
"It was extraordinary.. and so beautifully conceived and executed. The power of it, and the theme of women being sacrificed for the good of others/ the "community," kept building and building. Just riveting. See it if you can!!" -Patron
"HEAD HANDS FEET at Shaking The Tree Theatre features gruesome tells of horror told in the most poetic possible fashion with beautiful design, movement, speech, and ensemble work. I was awestruck by the beauty of the fairy tales and Greek drama as much as I was terrified by these tales of dismemberment. What a brilliant piece of theatre conceived and directed by Samantha Van Der Merwe! What a talented and beautiful cast and fantastic crew and design team! I loved the elemental nature of this theatre piece."
About Head . Hands . Feet
We are excited to present a delightfully dark descent into the wild terrain of fairytale and myth, directed by Samantha Van Der Merwe and created in collaboration with the cast.
Following in the tradition of Shaking the Tree’s previous fall offerings — Masque of the Red Death, Wilde Tales, and The Tripping Point — our newest offering, Head. Hands. Feet. brings you tales of darkness, dismemberment, and the immersive visual landscape that you’ve come to love, combining three lesser-known fairy tales with an epic Greek tragedy.
The first ensemble-devised act includes Bluebeard by Charles Perrault, The Red Shoes by Hans Christian Anderson, and The Handless Maiden by The Brothers Grimm; three unscripted fairy tales whose female protagonists are placed in the most dire and perilous situations imaginable: all of them are in danger of dismemberment! In an epic second act, Euripides’ Iphigenia at Aulis adapted by Irish playwright Edna O’Brien, we catapult into the action resulting in all further Greek dramas: the sacrifice of the Innocent for the benefit of War.
Head. Hands. Feet.’s set will be designed in collaboration with rhiza architecture and design, a Portland architecture firm responsible for several public art pieces around Portland and the Northwest. From their website: “The name rhiza stems from the word rhizome- meaning: shared roots- a metaphor for our collaboration.” Modeling the set after ancient Greek amphitheaters, Shaking the Tree’s Warehouse space will be transformed, and audiences will become witnesses to the “unspeakable, unthinkable things”.