Room 105 Publicity

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Acclaimed filmmaker Gigi Gaston’s ROOM 105, a musical one-woman show starring Grammy-nominated Sophie B. Hawkins, is a thoughtful and entertaining tribute to legendary soul singer Janis Joplin. The show is a modern-day retrospective on Joplin’s turbulent life, telling a story that reveals the iconic singer’s thoughts on love, sex, fame and belonging.

Beginning with her Summer of Love performance at Woodstock, Joplin tells the audience how the hippie movement fought against corruption and corporatism, only to contradict itself and make “fat capitalists” rich. She says that the only thing grass roots about Woodstock was the grass they were smoking. This attitude characterizes Joplin throughout ROOM 105 as she is always skeptical of others’ intentions. This is made clear when Joplin, spoken from a modern-day perspective, vents that she is trapped by the manager and lawyer that she is still paying, long after her death. She talks about the downside of fame, but also about the inspiration she received from her fans, believing that “they couldn’t see that I was ugly.” They saw her soul and her free spirit. 

Joplin’s drug and alcohol use leads to several sexual encounters, with whom she seeks a sense of love and belonging — an ultimately unsuccessful struggle. In a playful interview with television show host Dick Cavett, Joplin draws a parallel between men and the carrots used to tempt mules pulling carts. Men are dangled in front of women, who are always chasing something that elude them. She says that men always hold up something that they are not prepared to give, which is a recurring theme throughout the show.

The final scene takes us to room 105 at the Landmark Hotel, where Joplin recalls her last night alive. The audiences experiences Joplin in the room with herself, a double who has succumb to the overdose. Here the audience gets an intimate look at her feelings on her hometown, her career, her addictions and where it all went wrong.

Showcasing classic Joplin music and original songs by Sophie B. Hawkins, ROOM 105 brings this transformative counterculture figure to life with realistic imagery and dramatic stage elements. With frequent asides encouraging audience participation, music and theater fans won’t want to pass up the opportunity to contribute to this dynamic show. The spirit of Joplin returns October 4.