liminal group

‘Marilyn Monroe vs. Vampires’: Alien nation

Liminal Group's inventive production of R.W. Fassbinder's satirical play uses video to make humans the aliens

They’re all around us. The butcher, the cop, the wife, the mistress, the lover, the rest. All  with their insecurities, their manipulations, their schemes, their betrayals, their hopes, their fears. If you could see and hear them whining, plotting, hoping, even killing… why, it’d be enough to drive someone crazy. Especially if that someone is a visitor from another planet whose first exposure to human beings puts her in the midst of all of the above. You know, an alien like The Man Who Fell to Earth, or Starman, or Ziggy Stardust, or another 1970s character, Phoebe Zeitgeist, an alien sent to our planet to investigate how our society works — still a tough task, as last month’s election revealed.

Liminal Group’s ‘Marilyn Monroe vs. Vampires’ runs through Sunday at Portland’s Disjecta gallery. Photo: Sumi Wu.

Phoebe is the central figure in the famed German film director Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s satirical 1972 play, Marilyn Monroe versus the Vampires, which Portland’s most inventive and, let’s just say it, wonderfully weird theater ensemble, Liminal Group, has adapted into a “360º immersive sci-fi video opera” that runs this weekend at Portland’s Disjecta gallery. Like every Liminal show, it’s a performance experience like no other, and one you won’t forget.