Halloween Extravaganza at St John the Divine

I was supposed to do more Charlottesville pics for this entry, but decided to put up the pics from Halloween, because, well, Halloween.

On October 27, Mettawee River Theatre Company put on a pageant at St. John the Divine paired with an old horror movie. This year it was The Phantom of the Opera. While the film was slightly long, the pageant afterwards was fantastic (this was my second year seeing it, first time with the camera, so I knew what I was aiming for). The lighting of the cathedral added to the mysteriousness and spookiness of the procession. They do two shows during one night. We went to the later one, which is supposed to be spookier…

The performers have incorporated dealing with everyday technology, including smartphones. They pose, take selfies, act confused by them, etc. It’s truly wonderful to see and well worth the price of admission ($25 per person).

The view of the cathedral nave as you enter.

The movie screen hanging high above for all to see.

Ghoulish watchers on the pillars.

Using church lighting to make the everyday iconography a tad diabolical/creepy.

People walk down the nave to find their seats.

The lighting of the arch adds to the atmosphere.

More ghoulish watchers.

Looking down on the crowd.

On the arch by the screen.

Any one want some fish? Sorry. Too late.

A demon enters to begin the procession.

One of my favorite designs. The staff adds so much to the character.

Close up of the mask.

The revels have begun.

A knight approaches.

The lighting adds so much to the imagery.

The bishop is not pleased.

Wonderful craftsmanship on this one.

The smoke plays with every one of his gestures.

A massive mask.

Up close.

A flyer dances by.

The dead cellist passes by on his way to his podium to play.

Another favorite of mine.

A witch approaches.

Facing off.

Such a large snout for sniffing out the naughty ones…

Railing to the fiends.

Spinning in the light and shadow.

All of the colors in these two.

They cower as they pass by.

Ignoring the bishop in order to act some mischief on the onlookers.

Look at those talons.

Looks like something out of Labyrinth.

The giant skeleton approaches.

Puppets on sticks are always amazing to watch.

The procession heads down the nave.

Such wonderful use of smoke and light.

After the procession, a close up of their entrance portal.

The ghoul hanging from the rafters (extremely dark up there).

The cellist plays long after the others have departed.

I loved getting these shots with the candles in them.

The full cellist.

Close up of the mask.

Very macabre. I love it.

Applauding the music.

Next time: Charlottesville … for real this time.

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About nsantasier

I am an actor, fight choreographer, playwright, and photographer based in and around NYC. I shoot on a Canon Rebel T5i with either a Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS lens or a Canon EF-S 55-250mm f/4.0-5.6 IS Telephoto Zoom lens as they are the only lenses I currently own.
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One Response to Halloween Extravaganza at St John the Divine

  1. Very reminiscent of illustrations of medieval religious “plays” staged usually outside the churches. Especially the masques and scenes.

    But the pole puppets are so Bread and Puppet Theatre which is over in Vermont and I performed with at SUC-P in 1972. They also drove down every year to join the WestBeth artists in their early 1970-80s Halloween parades in the Village which started at West Street; then up Bethune, Jane, and Charles; across West 4th to Seventh; and over Sheridan Square to Washington Square! It was so much more than the Sixth Avenue farce!

    And nice photos!

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