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Conceptual Cargo construction

posted by Kate Vangeloff on Thu, Feb 10, 2011
in Our shows , Prop shop , Scene shop

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Cargo 015
So just how did they build the set for The Last Cargo Cult? How does it stay together? Where do the boxes go while Steve Jobs is being performed? Who owns the contents of the "iPig" box?

Excellent questions, my friends.  

Being unsure myself, I felt it was time to do some set-inspired sleuthing. I began my inspection by performing some very scientific data-gathering methods such as "sneaking into the theatre" and "gently poking the boxes to see what would happen." 

MD_CC4_lr (I think it is important to note at this point that this research is confidential, so please don't disclose my methods to Mike Daisey or Jean-Michele Gregory...or stage management...or anyone for that matter.)

Not much knowledge was gleaned from this first attempt other than the fact that sneaking into a theatre and gently poking cardboard boxes makes one feel like a bit of an idiot, so I decided to dig deeper. I had heard a whisper of a rumor that although I had previously enjoyed imagining that the Cargo Cult boxes spent their week off sight-seeing, carousing, and generally making merry, that the boxes were actually kept inside the now somewhat-abandoned prop shop at Addison Street. I accosted a hapless facilities crew member and convinced them to let me into the prop shop which, I might add, was ominously locked.

On the breathless verge of discovery, I slowly opened the heavy, creaking door. After a tense moment fumbling to find the light switch -- behold! Six mounds of corrugated consumerism materialized before my eyes along with the truth I was so desperately seeking. Why hadn't I seen it before? But of course: Box Tetris!  

Cargo 002 Let me explain. Each individual box is part of one of six larger units of boxes fastened together with hot glue. These “playing pieces” are stacked on large crates to add height and fitted together in a Tetris-like fashion to create the illusion of the mountain of materialism looming over Mike Daisey.

Case closed.

Now if I could only figure out who owns the iPig and why...

Photo of Mike Daisey in The Last Cargo Cult by


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