Us: “Hey Pipeline! We have this musical. We started writing it 8 years ago. We’ve got 10 or so composers on it. It’s filled with impossible moments to stage, and it definitely requires one non-negotiable sequence with roller skates. And so sorry, we forgot to mention, but there is a MASSIVE fire, and a song with a cosy little leprosy interlude. Oh, and so silly of us not to mention… we’d love to do it soon?”
Pipeline “Would March work?”
My name is Annie Tippe, and I am a director working here in New York and wherever else they’ll have me. I am also a composer, and had my work featured alongside a tremendous group of composers on Pipeline’s last main stage, Folk Wandering, directed by Andrew Neisler with a book by Jaclyn Backhaus. I have been collaborating with many of the Pipeline crew for years. As both individuals and as a collective, this group of people is fearless in their fight for artists to make the things they thought were impossible. Pipeline gave me the opportunity to explore a side of my artistic self that I rarely visit, that of making music. Before this opportunity, I considered it impossible that my work as a composer could be featured anywhere beyond the bowels of my iPhone voice memos.
Pipeline gave me, and our terrific team, the validation and encouragement that working in a non-traditional way was in fact our greatest asset.
Folk Wandering was made out of a deep sense of collaboration and delight in combining wildly different artistic sensibilities in order to make a greater story about America’s past, present and future. Pipeline celebrated the impossible nature of our show, and the sheer volume of our team. They never said No. They always found a way to say Yes. They are responsible and realistic, but their primary focus is on fulfilling those magic middle-of-the-night-fever- dream-quick-get-a-pen-Ah-ha! moments that in any other circumstance, you write off as “too big” to dare pursuing.
A company that dreams big and lets their artists dream GIGANTIC deserves our support. It’s worth the incorrect grammatical use of “gigantic” just to communicate how serious I am about Pipeline’s value in this community. I am so honored to have had the chance to work with them, both as a director and as a composer, and I warmly encourage you to consider donating in whatever way you can. I promise you, however you’re able to support Pipeline, you will see that contribution manifested in some bold way, by some very bold artists. Thank you, and cheers to a new year of more big, bold and adventurous art!
Top Photo by Jordan Geiger.
Bottom Photo by Suzi Sadler from Folk Wandering (2018).