Goat Island is a Chicago-based collaborative performance group. In summer 2005 the company restructured itself where there are now two distinct layers of membership, which is defined by Core and Associate. Core members are Karen Christopher, Matthew Goulish, Lin Hixson (director), Mark Jeffery, Bryan Saner, and Litó Walkey. Associate members are Cynthia Ashby, Lucy Cash (formerly Lucy Baldwyn), CJ Mitchell, Judd Morrissey, Margaret Nelson, John Rich, Charissa Tolentino and Chantal Zakari.
Members contribute to the
conception, research, writing, choreography, documentation,
and educational demands of the work. Characteristically
we attempt to establish a spatial relationship with audiences,
other than the usual proscenium theater situation, which
may suggest a concept, such as sporting arena or parade
ground, or may create a setting for which there is no everyday
comparison. We perform a personal vocabulary of movement,
both dance-like and pedestrian, that often makes extreme
physical demands on the performers, and attention demands
on the audience. We incorporate historical and contemporary
issues through text and movement. We create visual/spatial
images to encapsulate thematic concerns. We place our performances
in non-theatrical sites when possible. We research and write
collaborative lectures for public events, and often subsequently
publish these, either in our own artists' books, or in professional
Goat Island was founded in
1987 and incorporated in 1989 as a non-profit organization
to produce collaborative performance works developed by
its members for local, national, and international audiences.
Eight completed works include Soldier, Child, Tortured Man (1987);
We Got A Date (1989); Can't Take Johnny to the Funeral (1991);
It's Shifting, Hank (1993); How Dear to Me the Hour When Daylight Dies (1996);
The Sea & Poison (1998); It's an Earthquake in My Heart (2001);
and When will the September roses bloom? Last night was only a comedy (2004).
The company has toured the US and England, Scotland, Wales, Belgium, Switzerland,
Croatia, Germany, and Canada. Goat Island ended with final performances of The Lastmaker at Swain Hall, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, February 2009.