Current Projects


 

Discount Ghost Stories

Concept and Book by Jessica Kahkoska and Alexander Sage Oyen
Music and Lyrics by Alexander Sage Oyen
Additional/ Adapted Text and Archival Research by Jessica Kahkoska

Discount Ghost Stories is a rock theatre band that conceptualizes dark American legends into multimedia concerts and albums. Discount Ghost Stories brings the “tall tales around the campfire” tradition to the 21st century, combining rock music, archival research, dark Americana lore, and immersive theatre into an electrifying rock séance with an irreverent vintage feel.

Discount Ghost Stories has been developed and presented at the American Musical Theatre Project (AMTP) at Northwestern University, Barn Arts Collective, Ars Nova ANT FEST, and Joe’s Pub at the Public Theatre. Upcoming: World Premiere Production at Local Theater Company in June 2019

 

live performances:

"Silver Moonlight" @ Joe's Pub, 1/23/17
DISCOUNT GHOST STORIES
Video recorded by Micah Joel

"FUN!!!" @ The Apartment Sessions
DISCOUNT GHOST STORIES
Produced by Luke McGinnis

"Heaven Is Our Home" @ Joe's Pub, 1/23/17
DISCOUNT GHOST STORIES
Video recorded by Micah Joel

"From The Top Of His Hill" @ Joe's Pub, 1/23/17
DISCOUNT GHOST STORIES
Video recorded by Micah Joel

 

Agent 355

Concept by Preston Max Allen and Jessica Kahkoska
Music, Lyrics, and Book by Preston Max Allen
Book and Dramaturgy by Jessica Kahkoska     

An all-female, punk-rock retelling of the unknown woman that helped America’s first Culper Spy Ring “outwit them all” in the Revolutionary War. Reimagined by all-female/TNGC band and challenging a history written by men, Agent 355 explores the loyalty, heritage, and courage of six real Revolutionary women whose stories, sacrifices, and secrets shaped the nation.  

Agent 355 has been developed and presented by the Chautauqua Institution, UCROSS Foundation, Village Theatre, (le) Poisson Rouge, and Musical Theatre Factory. it received the 2017 Marion International Fellowship in the Visual and Performing Arts and a 2019 American Antiquarian Society Fellowship for Creative and Performing Artists and Writers.

Press:
November 2018 Developmental Residency at Musical Theatre Factory
September 2018: Marion Fellows Lecture at SUNY Fredonia
May 2018 Concert at (l)PR
Marion Fellowship in Chautauquan Daily
Marion Fellowship Awarded in May 2017
Marion International Fellowship for the Visual and Performing Arts


Nia

Adaptation by Jessica Kahkoska
Directed by Sarah Wansley
With Music and Lyrics by Tommy Wansley               

This 90-minute, musical adaptation of Iphigenia et Aulis reimagines Euripedes’ controversial play in a rural Applachian town governed by fundamental religious rules and a blue collar military tradition. 

Was there indeed a miracle at Aulis, or just hysteria and violence? What story will we choose to believe?

Nia is the recipient of a 2018 FIRST STAGES residency at the Drama League. 

 

Untitled crytpo-judaism project

By Jessica Kahkoska

Colorado’s San Luis Valley is world-renowned for its beauty, but this famous Southwestern landscape may be harboring some secrets of its own. One in particular connects the valley to a clandestine Sephardic Jewish heritage and the 15th-century Exodus from the Spanish Inquisition … but is it really a secret, and if so, to whom? This new play with music sings the complicated legacy of Crypto-Judaism in the Southwest, illuminating an unlikely, alpine tale of secrecy, faith, fear and how we pass on culture when written records are too dangerous to keep. Driven by a community-engaged, Colorado-based research process, this piece explores if our identities and rituals rise from earth and mountains where we spend our days, are inherited in the ancient stories of our blood, or are learned in the motions of mothers at sunset and overheard songs of grandparents.

THE UNTITLED CRYPTO-JUDAISM PROJECT received the 2019 Denver Center for the Performing Arts (DCPA) “Powered By Off-Center” Residency.

Press:
Denver Center for the Performing Arts
Broadwayworld.com

 

Too Wild to Drill 

Adaptation by Jessica Kahkoska
Directed by Ashley Teague
With Support from the Wilderness Society   

Notch Theatre Company is partnering with Jessica Kahkoska on an epic, fifteen town, community-engaged adaptation of Homer's The Odyssey, inspired by The Wilderness Society’s Too Wild To Drill initiative, which asks: "What if we destroyed some of the best wild places in America for short-lived commercial gains?"

With support from The Wilderness Society, Too Wild To Drill will travel to 15 wilderness areas identified by TWS as under tremendous threat from pressures for oil, gas, and mineral extraction on public lands. In each community, Notch artists will develop a series of plays through public storytelling events, to be performed in conjunction with facilitated dialogue by community and professional actors in outdoor, wilderness spaces.

Too Wild to Drill was the recipient of a 2017 residency at University of Utah’s Taft-Nicholson Center for the Arts and Humanities, and the subject of a September 2018 Howlround Article by Ashley Teague, Founding Artistic Director, Notch Theatre Company.  Click here to learn more about the project

TWS_homepage_slider. Too Wild To Drill .jpg

Some places are just Too Wild To Drill. Together we can protect them.