Jim Sirianni interview with Michael Andrews & Matt Tavianini from Boxtales
Beyond the traditional disciplines of the theatre, BOXTALES makes use of many styles borrowed from other performance and cultural traditions such as storytelling, masks, dance, martial arts, circus arts, acro-yoga and radical sports. We try to create images in the mind of the audience without the use of too many props or a set of any kind.
We often transform from one character to another on stage, using simple props, costume pieces or just physical characterization. Sometimes we will take turns playing a character. We have found that this “Actor Driven” and “imagistic” approach engages our audience’s imagination, and tends to make the work open to various interesting interpretations.
We have always based our work in world mythology and folklore. Myth has played a significant role in the development of civilization. Through the development of myths mankind has been able to pass down from generation to generation the history, beliefs, and values of our ancestors, and teach us how to live a better life.
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Executive Artistic Director,
Michael Andrews is a theatrical pioneer, workshop leader, performance coach, business consultant, and musician, living in Southern California. Born into a family of philosophers, poets, musicians, and social engineers, his career is a natural progression from his background and interests. Michael believes that theater should be transformative in nature. Using mythology and ritual, theatre can carry cultural wisdom, teach values and create a sense of social unity and integrity for a community.
Currently, Michael is the Executive Artistic Director of the award-winning Boxtales Theatre Company, creating and performing original pieces based in world myth and folktales. He is also the leader of Santa Barbara’s premier dance band AREA51, and has an Executive Performance Coaching and Consulting business, focusing on Vision, Creativity and Leadership Communication with his wife Jessica Bortman, with whom he also has two sons.
Matthew Tavianini serves as an actor/producer/teaching artist and managing director with Boxtales Theatre Company. He is a graduate of UCSB and the FSU/Asolo Conservatory where he received his M.F.A. in acting. Some of Matthew’s favorite stage credits include Semyonov Pishchik in The Cherry Orchard, Trinculo/Gonzalo in The Tempest, Michal in The Pillowman, Karl in The Last Days of the Empire, Sir Andrew Aguecheek in Twelfth Night, Telemachus in Boxtales’ production of The Odyssey; Joe in The Last Night of Ballyhoo, David in The Rivals, Thurio in Two Gentlemen of Verona, Matt in Wrench, and Bobby in American Buffalo. He studied physical theater with James Donlon at UCSB and Sigfrido Aquilar at the Estudio Busqueda de Pantomimo Teatro in Guanajuato, Mexico.
Matthew teaches acting and stage combat here in Santa Barbara, and has been directing the GVJHS spring musical for the last ten years. He has worked with The Lit Moon Theatre Co, Westport Playhouse, The Odyssey Theatre (Koan ensemble), Ogunquit Playhouse, The Cape Playhouse, Asolo Theatre, Santa Barbara Theatre Group, The Ensemble Theatre, The Santa Barbara Revels, Genesis-West, Speaking of Stories, Santa Barbara Shakespeare Co., and City at Peace.