Theatre Mir introduces video productions

More than a party, Theatre Mir’s New Year’s Day Benefit celebrated the determination of the all-volunteer company to stay afloat after a series of devastating blows that might have sunk its four-year run.

When Rob Chambers, artistic director and heart of Theatre Mir last spring to battle cancer, it was no sure thing that the company would survive.

When Chambers left, the nonprofit’s entire board left with him.

Mir’s associate artistic director Yosh Hayashi was determined to keep the company together. She proposed the notion of producing a web series that they could mount more quickly and cheaply than a stage show.

“I wanted to use the project as a way to keep the company members all actively engaged in our art as well as with each other during our off months when we didn’t have any stage production to mount,” Hayashi says.

“The series was to be partially based in reality, following openly our exploits as a company that nearly sank, losing our previous administration and board of directors, and attempting to produce our latest show in hopes to revitalize our position in the artistic community.”

In the first three episodes of Mir’s web series, “BANGbangShoot!” Mir ensemble members play heightened versions of themselves. An actor plays an outsize character of the artistic director who disappears mysteriously.

“We went out of our way to make the artistic director in the series utterly different from Rob,” says Rachel Slavick, who replaced Chambers as artistic director. “We didn’t want Rob to feel we were taking a poke at him.”