In August and September, 2001, The Moon Is up There embarked on a national tour after a one night try-out performance at Dub Narcotic Studio in Olympia, WA. Initial cast members were Khaela Maricich, Phil Elverum, Calvin Johnson, Susan Ploetz (Pash) and Kyle Field (Little Wings). Kyle and Susan parted from the tour for various reasons, and the three remaining cast members carried on through the Midwest, East Coast, South, Texas, Southwest and up to the Northwest, picking up assorted guest cast members along the way for a show, a string of shows or a week at a time.
The Moon Is up There was billed as a “Paper Opera”, a concept developed by Khaela Maricich and expanded upon during a tour of the West she did in early 2001 with Jason Anderson/Wolf Colonel. Relying heavily on improvisation and inspiration from the venue or immediate surroundings, every performance of The Moon Is up There was different. Roughly blocked out in the hours before curtain the show was not “scripted”. In Santa Fe, NM (Sept. 4) at Plan B a more scripted blocking out, written by Khaela Maricich, is shown above.
the below photog shows Phil Elverum (the Microphones) and Khaela Maricich (Get the Hell out of the Way of the Volcano) standing in front of a map of Phil‘s life. It was taken at Signal 66, Washington, D.C. August 25 by Calvin Johnson.