Tickets are now on sale for Cosmic Trigger: The Play by Daisy Eris Campbell, based on Robert Anton Wilson’s seminal counter-culture text on brain change and ‘vision questing’, Cosmic Trigger: The Final Secret of the Illuminati.
Thanks to successfully surpassing their crowd-funding goal of £23,000, the Cosmic Trigger play will open – as planned – on the weekend of November 22 and 23 in Liverpool before moving to London for a run the following week.
With an aim of bringing the ideas, warmth and magic of Wilson’s writing to a wider audience, the world premiere performance of the play will be the main event at a two day ‘Conferestival’ in Liverpool, featuring comedians, writers, artists and musicians coming together to “celebrate the work, ideas, philosophy and twinkling brilliance of the late author, poet, sage and self-proclaimed holy fool”, Robert Anton Wilson.
This includes comedians Robin Ince and Nina Conti; authors John Higgs (The KLF: Chaos Magic and the Band Who Burned A Million Pounds), Robert Temple (The Sirius Mystery), CJ Stone (Fierce Dancing)and producer, film-maker and one-time Killing Joke member, Youth, with many more names to be announced in the coming days, we’re promised.
The crowd-fund target was reached with help and support from all over the planet – including counter-culture heroes Douglas Rushkoff and John Sinclair, Oscar winner Jim Broadbent, artists Jamie Reid and Jimmy Cauty, writers including Alan Moore and John Higgs, musicians including Tool and Cold Cut, ardent fans and the cosmically-curious who gave their support and their seed money to the campaign. “Sometimes magic really DOES happen…,” the producers muse enthusiastically.
With the the show’s inventor and writer, Daisy Eris Campbell, at the helm, daughter of the late-legendary theatrical maverick Ken Campbell, Cosmic Trigger will be a long-awaited sequel to her father’s Illuminatus, and “a re-kindling of Campbellian capers in Liverpool”, as she puts it which does sound rather lovely. Some familiar faces among the cast will be members of our own Impropriety, some of whom trained under Ken Campbell and whose annual Improvathon is inspired and dedicated to the man himself.
In 1976, Ken Campbell inaugurated the Science Fiction Theatre of Liverpool with its first production: Robert Anton Wilson’s cult conspiracy classic Illuminatus! at the Everyman. It wound up opening The Cottesloe at the National Theatre.
Now, in Cosmic Trigger, this non-fiction sequel recounts a period of Robert Anton Wilson’s life when he journeyed through what he called “Chapel Perilous”, befriending the likes of Timothy Leary, Alan Watts and William Burroughs, and experimenting with Crowley rituals and LSD. The production, described as “epic-scale” also takes us backstage to meet Ken and the gang as they stage Illuminatus.
Music, projections, and a voice-over by Alan Moore will evoke the real-life hallucinogenic trip through conspiracy, paranoia and enlightenment that transformed Wilson from a simple Playboy editor into the influential counter-cultural figure he is today.
The Find the Others conferestival takes place at Camp & Furnace on November 22 and 23. It will open with the play on Saturday at 2.23pm, and close late on Sunday night. A ticket for the two days, including the Cosmic Trigger play and ‘Discordian Ball’ is £69; tickets for the play only are £23/ £13 concessions.
For more info, visit cosmictriggerplay.com.