The Magic City @ BAM Fisher Theatre (New York, NY)
321 Ashland Place, Brooklyn, NY 11217
Loosely adapted from Edith Nesbit’s 1910 novel, Manual Cinema’s Magic City tells the story of nine-year-old Philomena, whose great love is building miniature structures out of books, toys, and other found objects from around her house. One day, her older sister (and only legal guardian) Helen announces that she is engaged to marry, and the two go to live at the mansion of Helen’s fiancé, Brandon. Left alone in her vast new home, forced to make friends with her annoying stepbrother Lucas, Philomena secludes herself in the attic where she builds the biggest miniature city she’s ever made. Later that night, Philomena wakes up to discover that his city has come alive. As she steps through the city gates, her adventure begins.
Told with wit, insight, and imagination, Magic City was one of the first “modern” fantasy novels. Using overhead projectors, paper shadow puppets, live actors in silhouette, miniature toy theater, and live musical accompaniment, Manual Cinema’s adaptation of Magic City will update the novel for a contemporary retelling.