The American Demons

A joint production of SVT and The Deborah Hay Dance Co.
Created and performed by Dan Dietz, Deborah Hay, Andrea Moon, and Jason Neulander
Music by Golden Arm Trio

September 15 - 30, 2000 at The Blue Theater
916 Springdale

Arguably the most ambitious project Salvage Vanguard has ever taken on, The American Demons was created over the course of nine months in a democratic, collaborative rehearsal environment without dramaturg or director. Conceived by Neulander in 1998 and funded in part by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, the show integrated its experimental process with source material from The Possessed by Fyodor Dostoevsky and news reports of the shootings at Columbine High School. Because of its experimental nature, the creative process was extremely challenging and exhausting, but the results paid off. People were deeply affected by the emotional and visual power of the show, some positively and some negatively, but all quite strongly.

The show was enthusiastically received by the press:

“With an underscore of the Golden Arm Trio’s haunting music, a backdrop that resembles a Mark Rothko piece, and the outstanding craft of Dan Dietz, Neulander, Deborah Hay and Moon, eerie is an understatement for The American Demons
— The Austin Chronicle.

The American Demons had the biggest per-night attendance of any long-running show the company has ever produced, selling to 90 percent capacity. In addition to regular attendance, the show reached 125 high school students through the company's outreach program ArtReach.


Dan, Andrea, and Deborah at work with letters.

Dan, Andrea, and Deborah at work with letters.

Deborah examines the collaboratively-generated color-coded outline.

Deborah examines the collaboratively-generated color-coded outline.


Poster