Genre Bender

Theatrical Powerhouse Meets Photographer: Sarah Rudinoff and Steven Miller

An otherworldly glimpse into the Rudinoff/Miller collaboration.


Genre Bender 2015 is only 12 days away! The performances are almost ready—among them the collaboration between conceptual and editorial photographer Steven Miller and theatrical superpower Sarah Rudinoff.

Rudinoff and Miller circled each other for 20 years but never actually met, though they did see one another perform. So when Genre Bender finally brought them together, it was like a beautiful inevitability made manifest, like meeting a brother from another mother, they say. We knew they were each full of bold ideas and a wicked sense of humor. We didn’t know where their collaboration might go, but Rudinoff told us that she and Miller recently “completed a 24-hour immersion into a ritual performance of endurance that we filmed out at Smoke Farm.” Plus they made the brilliant photo above as a teaser for their performance. So, you know, things are headed in an awesome direction.

Steven Miller came to photography by way of graphic design (and playing bass for ¡TchKung!), and his quirky, queer-focused sensibility can swing from the perverse to the melancholy, often exploring the complicated relationships between people and situations. His 2014 piece Oubliette was an hour-long video created with 42 male volunteers locked in a claustrophobic faux jail cell. His ongoing collaboration with photographer Adrain Chesser, Beaster and Bear, explores complex narratives within gay culture. His penchant for collaboration has led him to create work with Degenerate Art Ensemble and Saint Genet. Miller’s fine art has shown in museums and galleries internationally, and his photographs have likewise been exhibited and published all over the world. (Of course, we’re partial to his work for City Arts, like his spectacular cover shots of Kitten ‘n’ Lou and Perfume Genius.)

Sarah Rudinoff has long been one of the most charismatic, versatile performers on Seattle stages. She made a big splash in 2000 playing Hedwig’s lover and bandmate Yitzhak alongside Nick Garrison in Hedwig and the Angry Inch. Her booming, brassy alto can blow the roof off any theatre in town, from the Annex to the 5th Avenue. She’s a peerless solo performer, works with the likes of choreographer/director Dayna Hanson and filmmakers Lynn Shelton and Wes Hurley, glitter it up with BenDeLaCreme and play anything from a wicked stepsister in Cinderella to an OG Seattle grunge wailer in These Streets—which she co-created with Gretta Harley and Elizabeth Kenney, based on true stories of local female grunge rockers.

What will these two brilliant, inventive artistic minds come up with as they cross-pollinate and create? Find out when Genre Bender comes to the Cornish Playhouse at Seattle Center on Friday, March 6 and Saturday, March 7. Advance tickets are $20, but they’re $30 at the door. Join us Saturday night and stick around for an after-party with music from DJ Topspin.

Get to know the other Genre Bender duos! 

Conceptual Artist Meets Musician: C. Davida Ingram and Hanna Benn
Rapper Raz Simone and multimedia artist Justin Roberts
Vocalist okanomodé and aerialist Lara Paxton
Poet Sarah Galvin and musician/filmmaker David Nixon

Vocalist okanamodé and aerialist Lara Paxton


We need your help! City Arts is becoming independent—and we need your support to make the transition. Join The NEW City Arts as a Founding Member today to secure the next chapter of the magazine you love! » LEARN MORE