GTPulse: Traverse City Theatre Nonprofit Debuts Web Series
Mash-up Rock and Roll knows how to have fun. The Traverse City-based nonprofit has been bringing original theatre to Traverse City since 2013. Their last production, Scooby Doo-Wop was a quickly sold-out show that combined interactive theatre with a drive-in movie style. Audience members followed the cast around town and helped them solve the mystery of the ghost that’s haunting Old Town.
It’s been no easy feat to put on a show during the past year, but Mash-up has managed to get creative again with the debut of their new video series Bjork and Mindy.
The series is a parody of Mork and Mindy starring Robin Williams and Pam Dawber. The late ’70s early ’80s sitcom told the story of Mork, an alien from planet Ork, coming to study human behavior on Earth. He meets young journalist graduate Mindy in Boulder, Colorado. The pair form an unlikely friendship, and hilarity ensues.
The revamped Bjork and Mindy was conceived and written by Mash-up’s Artistic Director, Lesley Alicia Tye, and filmed and edited by Jeffrey Thomas Morgan of Prometheus Motion Pictures. It stars Beverly Cady as Bjork and Kristen Stewart as Mindy.
“I was so excited to start working on a project like this and jump back into something so creative. Because of the pandemic, the number of acting opportunities has been limited, I’ve really been missing it. It was also my first time acting for the screen, which was a fun new challenge to learn about,” Kristen said. “Mindy is your ‘normal’ all-American girl. Even though she might not understand everything that Björk does, she tries her hardest to empathize with, learn from, and make her feel welcome. I found that she was very relatable, especially in the ways she tries to help her new friend.”
Instead of a gas station as the backdrop, the show is set in 1980s Traverse City. Mindy is getting a new roommate that just so happens to be Icelandic singer-songwriter Bjork. Hilarity ensues as the series follows the pair and their culture clashes. Will Bjork finally assimilate to her new surroundings and lose some of her weirdness, or will Mindy discover that what makes a person strange might be the very thing that makes them special?
The weekly video series will release one episode a week and debuts today! The series will run for six weeks and is an effort to entertain the people now, and in the future. They’ll use the funds from Mindy and Bjork to keep bringing unique and fabulous theatrical productions to Traverse City. Each episode can be individually purchased, or you can become a producer through their Patreon page and get access to the entire series along with other exclusive content.
Watch the series and support local art through the link here.
As for the fabulous ‘80s style?
“We tried our best and used as many authentic pieces as we could. We spent a lot of time studying and researching the style and aesthetic of the original series. Thankfully, I was able to do a lot of Mindy’s costuming out of my own closet,” Kristen said. “There are also some fun hand-crafted elements in the costuming but you’ll just have to watch it to find out!
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