Listen in as Erin B. Mee, conceiver & director of Play In Your Bathtub: An Immersive Audio Spa for Physical Distancing, discusses why we should call it “physical” distancing as opposed to “social” distancing, getting inspiration from quarantine, engaging all five senses, inviting the audience to be creative themselves, putting everyone on the same time-line from their respective locations, and the importance of giving us a sense that we’re going to an “event” in these strange days.
“A lot of our work is really co-created with the audience, in the sense that we have all kinds of ‘invitations’ …and I think this play is almost all invitation…because that’s where we are at this moment…”
Listen in as playwright Johnny G. Lloyd and director William Steinberger of Or, An Astronaut Play discuss capitalism, Emerson, childlike wonder, designing to your space, stealing kids’ artwork, and why the play goes to space school (as well as literal space).
“…it’s a play about race, and privilege, and access, but also, still, about finding access to that inner child, and finding a way to negotiate that…”
Listen in as GSAS! correspondent Alex Randrup meets with Of the Woman Came the Beginning of Sin and Through Her We All Die director Kylie M. Brown, along with producer Leigh Honigman, to discuss basement cults, Biblical inspiration & imagery, the marketability of femininity, ushering a new text to maturity, ritual & retail, accepting the weirdness to find the grounded truth, & living under late capitalism while femme.
“…what I see this show as, is femmes living in boxes, and trying their best to get out of said boxes. And we burn the boxes down. Simple enough.”
Listen in as The Sea The Mountains The Forest The City The Plain playwright Matthew Freeman, along with director David Cote & performer Robert Honeywell, discuss how to discover your character, propulsive changes & musicality, abstract simplicity, friendship and aging, moving through the words, finding your collaborators, embracing your influences, and moving on to the next thing on your journey.
“…change is a constant, and change can come with a sense of loss…you hit this sort of middle part of your life, and you look around, and you miss the things that came before, even if you love the life that you have. So I think that feeling is inspiring the piece a little bit…”
Listen in as the director/creator of Thoughts & Prayers, Lauren Hlubny, along with composer/”Felix” Thomas Giles, discuss the meaning of “dance-theatre concerto,” encouraging presence, developing a process to combine artistic disciplines, starting conversations, and not only reacting but taking action.
“…I think it’s very easy to become numb to it, and not know how to take action…creating this piece came, for me, as a point of wanting to do something, or at least wanting to be involved with other people, and start conversations…”
Listen in as See You director Max Hunter discusses the show’s rehearsal process, making your play resonant to its local culture, unifying tone, how to make a list interesting in the theatre, play, honesty/vulnerability supplanted by signifiers, directing as conducting, and relaxing into a difficult piece.
“…in a world where you ask someone to put the phone away, and pay attention in a shared space for two hours—I think that really asks something, and there’s a weight to that…”
Listen in as In the Penal Colony writer/director/producer Miranda Haymon, along with set designer Emmie Finckel and lighting designer Cha See, discuss the relationship and performance of patriarchy & punishment, how the show’s designers interacted with their process, sites of judgement, machines, building a highly physical piece with little dialogue, avoiding the “bad version” of the play, supporting design choices, and how Kafka’s 100-year-old short story resonates today.
“…I feel that this piece is directly engaging with the real live bodies and the real live circumstances in a way that feels gripping, and theatrical, and REAL…we’re able to get folks in the room, and have a real, live, conversation…”
Listen in as the creators & performers of Crushing Baby Animals, Maria Swisher & Tana Sirois, discuss amazing synchronicity, combining genres in a multi-dimensional world, structured improv, cross-pollination among artists, “stylistic dis-integrity,” making space for the chaos and the wonder, how to build intense trust with your artistic collaborators, how to stick through the difficult stuff, and how “our sense of self is shaped by the people around us.”
“…stay with the trouble…something that we have learned is even when things feel very uncomfortable, or when you find yourself having to ask something that’s difficult of your partner […] and consistently make the decision to stick with it, and to experience what feels troubling and complicated, and know that you have a shared goal of moving past it […] and let that influence your work, and accept each other for that…”
Listen in as Retro Productions Artistic Director Heather E. Cunningham, who plays the eponymous Mary of Mary, Mary, along with fellow performers Chris Harcum, Robert Franklin Neill, & Desmond Dutcher, and director Shay Gines, discuss digging into a zippy comedy, gender roles in retro shows, leaving naive nationalism, playing the outdated references, the complicated lenses through which we see plays from the past, transitions, “playing for keeps,” and why plays about relationships will never go away.
“…when I set out to choose a play, I narrowed it down: ‘mid-century, female playwright, comedy’…”
“…I was very drawn to this character. She’s the smartest person in the play…she has flaws, she’s insecure, she’s a beautiful, robust, witty woman. I felt like she was so full, and rich in character…”
Listen in as Whore writer/producer/performer Suzanne Tufan and director Lindsey Hope Pearlman discuss “showing the emotion of little moments,” the various masks we create, working as a director with the writer/performer, the roller-coaster of baring one’s soul in a public setting, playfulness within serious personal material, and transformation, survival, and hope.
“I thought it was an important story to share, because I think we have so many misconceptions about women and sexuality. The word ‘whore’ is this dirty word, and women get these dirty words thrown at them from such a young age, for no reason…”