FEATURE FILM- NONFICTIONAL MUSICAL DRAMA
SATURDAY, MARCH 26 – 08:00 PM – 1H40 – ALL AUDIENCES
Presentation by and discussion with director, writer and composer Jack Kohler, actor and singer Danny DeLeon, singer Koli Kohler, and actress Carly Kohler
FOLLOWING THE Q&A, Koli Kohler and Danny DeLeon will perform live on the Byrd Theatre stage.
Each one of us deserves protection. Safety is a basic human right. Yet, seven generations ago, Native people did not have that right. Under the Doctrine of Discovery, Indigenous people were considered non-human. Native families still carry generations of that trauma resulting from the oppressive system used against them during colonization and Manifest Destiny. The Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women (MMIW), Girls and Relatives Movement has garnered attention recently, but this crisis has been going on since Pocahontas was kidnapped in 1613. “Something Inside Is Broken” is a story about the beginnings of the MMIW crisis in the state of California. Men can be wretched. Men can do things that are unthinkable. Sutter was one of those men.
This story about the shattering of a tribe, their heartbreak, yet continued resilience, is told through a rock opera with truth, honor, music, and a little comic relief. It is through the character of Lizzie Johnson, a Nisenan woman and daughter of the star crossed lovers ‘Iine (ee-nay) and Maj Kyle (My-cool-ay) that « Something Inside is Broken » unfolds. ‘Iine’s father Symyk’aj (Soo-ma-ky) is the Chief of the Auburn band of Nisenan. He has trade and work agreements with Johann Sutter, but Sutter’s slave hunters don’t always follow those agreements. Sutter’s fort is “the Gateway to the West” and the rendezvous point of Captain Fremont, Kit Carson and the American soldiers. Symyk’aj is realizing his inability, and Sutter’s inability to protect his people from this new wave of immigrants. The slave hunters take five young woman from Symyk’aj’s village, including Maj Kyle. ‘Iine, in turn, volunteers to work at Sutter’s fort. Soon, thereafter, ‘Iine incites a riot and rescues Maj Kyle, which has a tragic ending for both characters.
The Satirical comic relief comes in the form of short segments of ‘Frontier Idol’ hosted by the first ‘Governator’ of California, who is the master of ceremonies of this 1846-style-reality show in which slave hunters and slave girls are pitted against one another.
“Something Inside is Broken” is a courageous story of the Nisenan Tribe of Northern California during the time of Sutter’s reign on the last frontier. This dynamic non-fictional musical is based on the survival of the Nisenan tribe, which prior to the Gold Rush was California’s largest thriving Tribe. This film version of “Something Inside Is Broken” features a multi-cultural cast, including 15 Native American actors representing 18 different tribes. Two descendants from the Auburn Nisenan tribe are also in this production. More than a third of the play is in the Nisenan language.
CAST & CREW
DIRECTOR / WRITER / COMPOSER Jack Kohler
MUSIC Goodshield Aguilar, Lindsey Arbaugh, Megan Chesnut, Jack Kohler, Koli Kohler, J. Ross Parrelli, Alan Wallace, Simón Wilson
CHOREOGRAPHER Elle Beyer
PRODUCERS Jack Kohler, Alan Wallace, Simón Wilson
PRODUCTION COMPANY On Native Ground
CINEMATOGRAPHER Antonio Gullo
EDITOR Jack Kohler, Antonio Gullo
CAST John Douglas Ayers, Natalie Benally, Elle Beyer, Han Beyer, Lon Beyer, Sammy Cee, Megan Chesnut, Isabella Delatorre, Danny Deleon, Derek Dozier, Brittney Escalante, Mark Hoffman, Caleb Jernigan, Carly Kohler, Jack Kohler, J. Ross Parrelli, Selena Perafino, Kenneth Ray Ramos, Matt Rives, Alicia Marie Siu, Ayotli Marie Siu, Rachael Sprague, Arielle Taylor, Jehnean Washington, Simón Wilson
GENRE Nonfictional Musical Drama
PRODUCTION LANGUAGE English/Nisenan
NATIONALITY Nisenan USA
RUNNING TIME 1h50