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Glass Menagerie– design notes

8 Jun

Jared Mezzocchi, my media design collaborator on YOU ARE DEAD. YOU ARE HERE., recently posted on the process of designing for a new interactive media production of The Glass Menagerie at Arena Stage. A very thoughtful reflection on the relationship between spectacle and narrative; you can read it here.

A late discovery

2 Mar

A friend forwarded me this–I’d not seen this Trojan Barbie review before. Very moved that this writer responded to so many layers of the play.

Countdown to opening at Playbox in Warwick!

Playbox image, Trojan Barbie

(If you’re coming to see the play don’t read the above til afterwards—spoiler alert!

Cast confirmed: Mary Beth Peil et al

15 Feb

Very excited that the Irish Repertory Theatre’s reading of my new play, CAN’T COMPLAIN, has such a rock star cast— Mary Beth Peil, Orlagh Cassidy, Andy Paris and Kelley Green. Free and open to the public–if you’re in NY this Friday, please come!
Friday 18th, 3 pm, Irish Rep.
Details are here:

Warwick show

18 Jan

Coming up soon! Trojan Barbie in Warwick at Playbox Theatre. I’m so excited to see what a theatre company of young performers does with this play. If you’re in Warwick or Birmingham, please come.

Reading at Boston Playwrights Theater

4 May

IfIf you happen to be in Boston, come to the reading of my play PUSSY BOY at Boston Playwrights Theatre. Wednesday May 5, 7 p.m. Kate Warner directs.
Details are here. (scroll down). It’s free and you can reserve seats online. (There’s a Singing Police Chorus in this play, which in my view, we don’t get enough of on stage.)

Red Fern show- final week!

17 Mar

OK, I finally got to NY to see my short play FISH BOWL in the evening of seven plays that Red Fern commissioned under the rubric +30NYC. (The brief: Imagine NY in 30 years’ time.)

And I thought the evening was great overall– You know how in an evening of short plays there are usually one or two duds? There really weren’t, and some of them were knock-out funny, imaginative, creepy, poignant… I still have the image of a cryogenically frozen head, resurrected from a foul-mouthed frozen relative, on a stick (“No, a stem” said the smarmy salesman).

I was proud to be in the company of these writers and creative time and hope you can go see it. I’m also still processing the amazing inverse relationship I’ve experienced in the past week between production bucks and size of venue, and talent and smarts in what’s on stage. It’s almost Swiftian material for satire.

I’ll write about this more fully another day, but (referring back to some thoughts in an old post, Fear, Bad Teeth and Comedy) I think it’s to do with WHERE the fear is located in the theatre. When the terror is of biting the hand that feeds (the patrons, the donors, the subscribers) because then the entire pack of cards would collapse, then all fear, uncertainty, anxiety, darkness and ambiguity must be surgically excised from what appears on stage. Instead it circulates in the dark, in the smiling unctuous tone of the solicited “talkback”, in the lobby, and in the office computers where the Excel spread sheets crunch the numbers, as little cancerous particles of free floating dread.

Red Fern Theater Co Presents +30NYC 3/4-3/21 2010/02/16

19 Feb

If you’re in NYC in March, come see this! A collaboration involving six writers working with Red Fern to create an evening of plays all set 30 years in the future in this city, loosely connected by environmental themes.

Red Fern Theater Co Presents +30NYC 3/4-3/21 2010/02/16.

Arts help economy, supporters say as Carcieri considers spending cuts | Rhode Island news | | The Providence Journal

9 Feb

Arts help economy, supporters say as Carcieri considers spending cuts | Rhode Island news | | The Providence Journal.

This is a bitter argument being waged in many places at present.  The right-wing Carcieri administration is advocating cutting the entire budget of the Rhode Island State Council for the Arts.  The above article makes a persuasive case for the economic benefits (as well as quality-of-life aspects) for having a vibrant arts scene in Providence and RI.

I mean really, what’s to like about living in a cold, depressed, city with high taxes if not for its other qualities–great food, diverse population, small enough to have character, some great universities and colleges, and a strong creative and artistic life?  In McMall America, cities like Providence are oases of particularity.  They have character and specificity.  You may not like the many maddening things about a small town that used to be a Mafia center and has an ex-Mayor who imagined “the Venice of New England” (and then went to jail for four years for embezzlement)… but it’s SOMEWHERE and the arts scene, with its wide-ranging community involvement, is a big part of that.

Do playwrights moan? Therese Rebeck’s take.

28 Jan

There’s been a lot of activity in the blogosphere lately about the new book Outrageous Fortune: The Life and Times of the New American Play by Todd London, published by TDF.  Here’s Therese Rebeck’s spirited response to charges of “whining” by playwrights.

Do playwrights moan? Damn right – and so we should | Theresa Rebeck | Stage |


4 Dec

I want to amend my last rant, which came at the end of a hard day. There are many amazing artists striving to do complex, interesting work in the US. They’re in collectives and garages and places like the Orchard Project and scrappy groups that rent rooms by the hour. They’re at HERE and PS122 in NY and at many other places all over the country. It’s just that there’s an inverse relationship at present between $ level of production and risk in the work.

My recurring image for the institutional not-for-profit theatre in the US in these rough economic times is that of a very hungry dinosaur deciding to eat its own eggs.