written by Liz Fisher
|| produced by Whirligig Productions | performed January 2015 at the Rollins Theater, Austin, TX | directed by Liz Fisher | scenic design by Justin Smith | costume design by Jamie Urban | lighting design by Megan M. Reilly | projection design by Lowell Bartholomee | photography by Will Hollis Snider ||
Deus Ex Machina was a Choose-Your-Own-Adventure retelling of the Oresteia, with the audience playing the role of the gods. As she awaits Agamemnon's return from the Trojan War, Clytemnestra goes to the Oracle to seek advice on how she should receive him.
The audience chooses from one of two prophecies by voting via their cell phones, the result of which affects the course of the narrative (either she kills Agamemnon or she doesn't). With Electra's and Orestes's visits later on in the play, what I was tasked with lighting wasn't one show but twelve.
The challenge was to create a design that branched and jumped to different cues depending on what was chosen by the audience, but would also allow each of those twelve possible plays to have a design that was unique and coherent for that path.