Baldwin and Buckley at Cambridge

  • Show
  • Theatre
The 2023 archive

Elevator Repair Service

United States / Creation 2021

Is the American Dream at the expense of the American Negro? An immersive show to experience this debate and get to know the figure of James Baldwin. 

Baldwin and Buckley at Cambridge, Elevator Repair Service, 2023 © Christophe Raynaud de Lage


Is the American Dream at the expense of the American Negro? This question was posed to the writer James Baldwin and to conservative thinker William F. Buckley Jr. in 1965. Surrounded by students at the University of Cambridge, the two men debated, their arguments recorded for posterity. Inspired by the contemporary resonances of their arguments, John Collins and Greig Sargeant of the New York company Elevator Repair Service immerse us in the historical debate. A narrow room, a pulpit, an audience within arm’s reach… To be at the heart of the debate, struck and carried away by strong convictions and timeless ideas. The arguments used couldn’t be more timely, leading us to think about relationships of discrimination, but we also watch James Baldwin and slowly get to know the private side of this public figure. Past and present collide. The power of words prevail.

Interview with Elevator Repair Service


With April Matthis, Gavin Price, Greig Sargeant, Christopher-Rashee Stevenson, Ben Williams
Text James Baldwin, William F. Buckley Jr, Lorraine Hansberry
A project of Greig Sargeant, Elevator Repair Service
Director John Collins
Costumes Jessica Jahn
Lighting Alan C. Edwards
Sound Ben Williams
Set Design Collaboration dots
Wigs Earon Chew Nealey
Assistant Director Maurina Lioce
Stage Manager Maurina Lioce
Light Manager Alexander Le Vaillant Freer
Sound Manager Jason Sebastian
Translation for surtitles Valentine Haussoulier
Production Aaron Amodt, Mariana Catalina, Cleo Michel, Hanna Novak

"That's All I Ask", performed by Nina Simone - Words and music by Horace Ott (BMI) Courtesy of Verve Records under license from Universal Music Enterprises and Wellmade Music


Production Elevator Repair Service - produced for On Demand Streaming by Montclair State University for PEAK Performances (New Jersey, États-Unis) 
With the support of Villa Albertine, National Endowment for the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts with the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. This engagement is supported by Mid Atlantic Arts through USArtists International in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Mellon and Onda - Office national de diffusion artistique
In partnership with France Médias Monde 
Elevator Repair Service is supported by The Dorothy Strelsin Foundation, Edward T. Cone Foundation, The Fan Fox and Leslie R. Samuels Foundation for Contemporary Arts, The Harold and Mimi Steinberg Charitable Trust, Howard Gilman Foundation, The J.M. Kaplan Fund, Jockey Hollow Foundation, Lucille Lortel Foundation, The New York Community Trust, The O’Grady Foundation, Scherman Foundation, Select Equity Group Foundation, and The Shubert Foundation. 

Elevator Repair Service is a member of The Alliance of Resident Theaters (New York).

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La matinale - 7 July

  • Café des idées
Julien Gosselin, Tim Etchells, Émilie Monnet, Elevator Repair Service

The 2023 archive