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Sound takes center stage in new Torn Space production

Often, the mark of great theatrical sound design is how little you notice it.

In a traditional production, the sound designer succeeds by sending subliminal signals to the audience, which either amplify or complicate the emotional tenor of the characters or the narrative. But at Torn Space, about as nontraditional a theater company as you can imagine, sound is about to step out of the shadows and take center stage.

“Church of the Original God presents Flying Saucers,” an experimental piece by composer Jonathan Golove featuring live video by veteran Torn Space designer Brian Milbrand, runs Friday through Sunday in the company’s home in the Adam Mickiewicz Library and Dramatic Circle (612 Fillmore Ave.).

The piece is part of the company’s second annual emerging artists series, meant to shine a spotlight on Western New York artists actively working to expand the traditional boundaries of theater.

Golove’s compositions, according to a release, will be “set against the backdrop of live gospel singers, a dynamic collision of style and substance that will explore the expansive potential of sound in performance.” Milbrand’s contribution, meanwhile, “will create a synesthesia-like effect, where the visual and audio are tied technologically using software.”

Tickets to the performances, at 8 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday, are $15. Call 812-5733 or visit

– Colin Dabkowski

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