Chris Van Strander and David Koteles, playwrights of “Edison’s Elephant”

"Edison's Elephant," by Chris Van Strander and David KotelesIn 1903, Thomas Edison publicly electrocuted Topsy the elephant at Coney Island, in a demonstration of the “dangers” of alternating current. The event was filmed by Edison, later becoming a huge hit as the new ‘moving pictures’ were shown across the country.

So, how does one dramatize such a sad, momentous, and gruesome story from last century for the modern stage? In the case of Edison’s Elephant, playing as part of the Gilded Stage Festival at the Metropolitan Playhouse, you start with not one, but two talented playwrights — Chris Van Strander, and David Koteles.

Listen in as Chris and David discuss the circumstances that led them to join forces to write the play, the tension between exploitation and enjoying the fruits of that exploitation, and the similarities between Gilded Age and modern-day America.

“…everybody for the past few months has been asking me, ‘what’s your new play about?’ and I said, ‘it’s about Thomas Edison executing an elephant,’ and everybody sort of looks at me like, ‘what in the name of God are you talking about?’ And so if that piques your curiosity at all, you should definitely come down and see the show…”

Metropolitan Playhouse presents

Edison’s Elephant

by Chris Van Strander and David Koteles

part of the Gilded Stage Festival

Metropolitan Playhouse
220 E. 4th Street
Manhattan

2 remaining performances!
Friday, January 24 @ 9PM
Saturday, January 25 at 1PM

Tickets: $10.99, available via BrownPaperTickets

"Edison's Elephant," by Chris Van Strander and David Koteles "Edison's Elephant," by Chris Van Strander and David Koteles "Edison's Elephant," by Chris Van Strander and David Koteles "Edison's Elephant," by Chris Van Strander and David Koteles "Edison's Elephant," by Chris Van Strander and David Kotelesphotos from BroadwayWorld.com

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *