Animal Lover's Project
Jesse Richards and performing arts ensemble Hundredth Monkey sing, dance, laugh, cry and dream their way towards a greater understanding of animals and the human lives they touch.
"Animal Lovers' Project is a wonderful show. It comes straight from the heart, and that's an incredibly rare thing... a beautiful painting of the animal world."
Imagine A Journey...
Creator/performer Jesse Richards and her multi talented ensemble Hundredth Monkey sing, dance, dream, and laugh their way toward an understanding of animals and the human lives they touch.
They tell the story of a woman, haunted by animal dreams, who sets off on a cross country journey in search of animal lovers. Along the way she meets a ninety-something man in a nursing home who finds reason to live when a beagle scampers into his room, a janitor who has witnessed something in a laboratory that gives him a cause worth going to prison for, and a treesitter, inspired to spend years in the arms of an old growth Redwood. Two hundred wolves provide magical descant to a love song, and a circus elephant reaches out from its concrete cell and touches the heart of a passing stranger.
Woven into this story are video projections of whales, wolves, and soaring eagles, along with real people telling of encounters with animals that changed their lives.
Animal Lovers' Project opened in March of 1999 in Ann Arbor, Michigan and played in theaters, festivals and conferences in Washington DC, Toronto, Toledo, Detroit, and Chicago.
Said the Ann Arbor Observer, "Richard's voice is rich and lusty. Her dances, marked by wit and mischief, are a cross between Merce Cunningham and Mummenshcanz. The costumes are often playful, but her work has at its core something big, primal, and powerful. It drives her music and her dance."
What They're Saying
Hundredth Monkey doesn't disappoint... Animal Lovers' Project is a rich offering of music, dance, and drama that explores the complex relationships between humans and animals.
Chicago Sun Times
I agree with the critics for their high praise of Jesse Richards and Hundredth Monkey.
Kenneth Fischer, President University of Michigan Musical Society
We'll play Animal Lovers' Project [the CD] on the bridge of our ship.
Captain Paul Watson, Founder of Sea Shepherd Conservation Society
Jesse's work is highly imaginative. Her unique combination of theater, visual art, and original music culminate in more than a sharing of ideas, but also a celebration and uplifting of the spirit. [Hundredth Monkey] is one of the top companies I have seen walk through our doors.
Johanna Broughton, Executive Director of the Performance Network Theater
[Animal Lovers' Project] was awesome, remarkable, magnificent. The talent and the presentation of the show was the very best!
Doris Dixon, The Fund for Animals Inc.
[Animal Lovers' Project] is an idea whose time has come, and Jesse Richards seems to be just the one to
bring the idea to fruition. She is enormously gifted and has a talented energetic cast.
Jacquie Lewis, Executive Director of SPEAK
Richards' voice is rich and lusty. Her dances, marked by wit and mischief, are a cross
between Merce Cunningham and Mummenshanz. The costumes are often playful,
but her work has, at its core, something big, primal, and powerful. It drives her
music and her dance.
Rachel Urist, Ann Arbor Observer
Richards always gives viewers their money's worth
Animal Lovers' Project is packed with a bursting creativity
encompassing multiple mediums. Hundredth Monkey's
dancer-singers never miss a beat or drop their enthusiasm in
bringing Richard's wide range of songs to life. Richards never
ceases to amaze with the soaring range of her own voice.
Christopher Potter, The Ann Arbor News
[Animal Lovers' Project] is a recipe for Saturday evening entertainment
with paws, claws, and a cause.
The Blade, Toledo
[Jesse Richards] continues to inspire me about what is possible from us
Gregg Alf, Audience member
I wish everyone could have their hearts opened in perfect balance with their bodies
and minds enjoyment as we, the audience, had yesterday.
Georgia Olsen, Audience member
Jesse's voice is amazing!
Chris DeRose, Actor and Founder of LCA