Pre-Cringe Profile: Tainted Love

CAVEAT: Courtney McLean (the storyteller) is a founding member of the Rockstar Storytellers, and I have worked *extensively* with her over the years.

SHOW TITLE: Tainted Love
PRODUCER: Erin Sheppard Presents
HAILING FROM: Minnesota
SHOW DESCRIPTION: From sirens of the sea, to toys that are tired of being played with, find out just how horrifying love can be. From the group that created last year’s Bump in the Night, Tainted Love uses cheeky story-telling and lively dance to delve into the horror that love can bring. Can you love yourself too much? Love of technology is a good thing, right? One thing is for certain, sometimes love can kill you.

INTERVIEWEE: Erin Sheppard

What makes you such an expert on the amygdala, anyway?

Hold on. I have to look up amygdala. J/K. I only know what scares me…but I assume that I am normal so that whatever scares me, scares others, right? Voila, expert!

My name is Erin Sheppard and I am a performer from Minneapolis. I perform improv regularly at HUGE Theater and teach hip hop at Zenon Dance School. I do theatre sometimes and choreograph for various people and shows as they come up.  I am thrilled to be back at the Twin Cities Horror Festival for it’s second year with another dance storytelling collaboration: Tainted Love.

What’s so spooky about your show?

Oh man. Love can be pretty creepy on its own, and if you’re looking at it from a horror-perspective, it can get REAL dark. We hit on a number of different kinds of love, so there are some sweet, tender moments as well as some truly horrifying ones. We have twelve different pieces of dance and storytelling combined so we get into an assortment of love stories.

Love is supposed to be a good thing, right? Why are you trying to corrupt it?

Ummm…you’ve been in love before, right?

Last year’s Bump in the Night was an homage to different kinds of horror movies. When the other choreographers and I were brainstorming dance ideas for this year’s show, we were most excited about pieces that explored some sort of deranged love. We thought that by narrowing the focus we could really dig into some fun, dark stuff. And Courtney’s generally on board with fun, dark stuff – especially in dealing with love, so Tainted Love came into being.

Reveal your greatest fear to me and the whole world.

Ahhh!!! Aside from centipedes and spiders I have a few deep irrational fears. Have you seen Gravity? That’s one of them. Floating alone in space would be TERRIFYING. I can’t even think about it without hyperventilating. Also I have a fear of being shot. I don’t know why. Please don’t shoot me.

Justify your show’s existence in the form of a macabre limerick.

There once was a broken heart
It had been patched up and then torn apart
Some moments are tender
Some feel like a bender
There is horror within the art.

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