Listen in as Opportunity playwright Stanley Martin, director Michael Blatt, and cast members Yhá Mourhia Wright, Ashley E. Matthews, Luis E. Mora, & Jayson Kerr discuss mirrors of performers’ reality, universality in specificity, challenging body type stereotypes, finding a shared history from the subtext of the script, mining your dialogue in real conversations, representation not just in the theatre but in the cast and in the play, the beauty of this particular “opportunity,” and why despite it all, we love this mad business of the theatre.
“…it was important that these people were real people that everyone could relate to…if you mix a group of people from work, anywhere, and add lots of alcohol, and have a past, trouble’s about to stir. It’s just theatre people are a little more theatrical with it…”
Listen in as Miranda from Stormville dramaturg Victoria Teague and performers Mackenzie Menter & Anna Cain discuss their Shakespeare-nerd status, trying to escape your circumstances, breaking the fourth wall, “surreal comedic Shakespearean fever-dreams,” tracing classic characters, New Jersey, creating a sense of community between audience and performers, and how their play is its own thing, separate and apart from The Tempest.
“…the way to make it relatable is to make those characters real, versus an archetype…”
“…it is definitely…a meditation on The Tempest, more than an adaptation…”
Listen in as Nylon director Knud Adams, along with producer Nicola Korzenko, composer Anand Wilder, and cast members Maggie Bofill, Brian Miskell, Cesar J. Rosado, Claire Siebers, & Sheila Vand, speak with GSAS! correspondent Alex Randrup to discuss how best to tease your show, the cages we build for ourselves, “coming up from beneath the role,” the audience as an invisible character, making art on an indie theatre budget, jedi director tricks, demanding a response, making messy decisions and messing up, and balancing *you* with your character.
“…I loved when I first read this play, this idea that, we do create a narrative for our lives, and what happens when you start to confront the cracks in that narrative…?”
Listen in as CC: You in Hell! playwright/producer/actor Mark Levy, along with fellow performer Sarah Detrik, discuss a love for 90s horror, uniting the theatre and comedy scenes, ensemble work, creating your style, putting horror onstage, finding collaborators with a different view of the world from your own, warm hugs, and the magic of the indie theatre community coming together.
“…it is a horror comedy set very much now, but it feels like it’s from the late ’90s…it’s a very nerdy, theatre-movie-nerd play…”
Listen in as Totally Wholesome Foods playwright Alice Pencavel, director Paul Bedard, along with performers Jonelle Robinson, Rosie Sowa, & Alison Walter, discuss eerie prescience, gray areas, examining our political beliefs through theatre, true believers, “selling the crunchy,” contradicting oppositions, singing plants, connection through various languages, and how theatre can work to preserve community.
“…to me, community is messy, is disordered, is inconvenient…diversity just brings so many challenges, and it’s essential for community, but it’s not the orderliness of aisles, clean aisles that are spacious and labeled…”
Listen in as co-producers of Romeo & Juliet, Kelsey Hercs (“Juliet”) and Drew Bolander (adaptor/director) discuss undermining romanticism, logic-ing your way through your feelings, finding the kernel of the play we all think we know so well, making limitations into opportunities, love overflowing into hysteria and violence, and what we’re willing to do for the people and things we care about.
“…all of the violence comes from a place of love…it’s coming from a place of trying to protect what’s ‘theirs’…I think it’s interesting, because then we can apply that to ourselves, and our own groups, and kind of see where other people are coming from, even if their actions are wrong, and bad…”
Listen in as The American Tradition playwright Ray Yamanouchi, director Axel Avin, Jr., and performers Sydney Cole Alexander, Hunter Canning, Alex Herrald, Martin K. Lewis, Danie Steel, along with music & sound designer Enrico de Trizio, discuss getting into the difficult questions with laughter, true stories of daring escapes, examining allyship, Brecht’s alienation effect, theatricalizing moments, how racism gets coded, remembering who the story is for, the incredible space that theatre gives us to “look through the keyhole,” and acknowledging the history that we don’t want to acknowledge.
“…I felt like it was a conversation that needed to be had. It’s a broader conversation than just speaking about slavery, or the Antebellum time period. It speaks to what’s happening today, using America’s great sin of slavery to talk about what’s still happening today…”
Listen in as Broken Box Mime Theater‘s Marissa Molnar and Joél Perez discuss creation of the company’s new show Skin, the freedom that comes from restrictions, “the spark,” leaning on the audience’s imagination, the power of reveal, and introducing future generations to the distilled theatrical power of mime.
“…what we’re really interested in is, not just performing for a small group. We want to open up the conversation to include as many people as possible…our work […] should be really accessible to anyone…”
Listen in as the co-producers & curators of FEAST: A Performance Series, Conrad Kluck & Alex Randrup, along with several artists from the January 2019 edition of the series, playwright Cayenne Douglass, director Daniella Caggiano, and choreographer Gavin Myers, discuss encouraging cross-discipline collaborations, hearing from your high school bully, the excitement of eclectic evenings, finding creative partners, the art of the everyday, and growing community through art.
“…one of the things we wanted to put a high priority on is trying to create some kind of community base, for our artists to be able come back, and continue developing a project, or develop something new, or just have a home base…but also, art can’t exist without art-lovers, and the people in the audience. Both of those spaces are just as important…”
Listen in as New Yiddish Rep Artistic Director David Mandelbaum, who also plays Estragon in the company’s production of וואַרטן אויף גאָדאָ (Waiting for Godot), and fellow actors Eli Rosen (Vladimir), Richard Saudek (Lucky), Gera Sandler (Pozzo), and Myron Tregubov (The Boy, sharing the role with Noam Sandler), discuss how the play’s musicality aligns with the musicality of the Yiddish language, surviving catastrophes, fake & real tolerance, Didi and Gogo as refugees, the work of New Yiddish Rep, connecting through sound, and the importance of Vladimir’s line “Was I sleeping while the others suffered?”
“…the context of the play is particularly meaningful when you look at the circumstances under which it was written: a couple of years after a catastrophic world war. What could be more natural than for it to be translated into Yiddish?…”