Here Lies Love
Written by David Byrne
Within a throbbing dance club environment, David Byrne and Fatboy Slim deconstruct the astonishing journey of Filipina First Lady Imelda Marcos, from her meteoric rise to her descent into infamy. This wholly immersive spectacle combines disco beats, adrenaline-fueled choreography, and a remarkable 360-degree scenic and video environment — going beyond Imelda’s near-mythic obsession with shoes to explore true questions of power and responsibility. Neither period piece nor mere biography, neither play nor musical, Here Lies Love is a unique theatrical experience that raises the pulse and quickens the blood — all filtered through the remarkable vision of David Byrne, one of the great American artists of the last half century.
Produced in association with the Public Theater and supported in residence by MASS MoCA
NOTE: Here Lies Love will be presented in The Hunter Center at MASS MoCA. Tickets must be purchased through the MASS MoCA Box Office at www.massmoca.org or by phone at (413) 662-2111.
Here’s the video for the Santigold track “Please Don’t.” We did a photo session for a magazine the other day, and I told the interviewer that on this song, by the time you get to the chorus, she owns it — she’s turned it into a Santigold song. Perfect.
There are six of these videos that have been completed for this project. Most, like this one, use news and archival footage to, well, show that every word of the song is true! Most of the lyrics on this one are lifted gently from interviews and quotations — the “please don’t” chorus especially. At some point as first lady, Imelda began to feel that she could help Philippine interests by charming world leaders into seeing things her way. “Handbag diplomacy” she called it — as she liked to imply that to solve a problem, she could bypass President Marcos and just grab a handbag and hop on a plane with some of her assistants. It sometimes worked! There was, for example, an Islamic-backed insurgency rising in the south of the Philippine archipelago, and she thought that a leader in that part of the world, Qaddafi in this case, might help pull the plug on that support if he saw things her way. Apparently he did — the funding stopped and the insurrection lost momentum, and she later described him as a pushover, a mama’s boy.
Choreographer | Annie B. Parson