Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

The Zen of Directing

April 5th, 2013 No comments

Ordinarily, I’m pretty much normal when it comes to work. My thoughts, in order, are “Is it coffee break yet?”, “Is it lunch yet?”, “Is it coffee break yet?”, and “Is it 5 pm yet?”

But anything to do with theatre directing is different. I go into this zone where everything gets focused and things like food and self censorship and over analysing situations go out of my brain.

It’s the way life is that my favourite public life activity is something that doesn’t pay. (Yet.) But the compensation is that, if I do it, the rest of existence’s trials and tribulations are infinitely more bearable.

I need theatre and directing in my life.

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Shakespeare Sucks

April 23rd, 2012 No comments

I started out in theatre as a stage manager for a company founded on strict Renaissance principles. This meant two lighting cues every show (lights up at the start, lights down at the end), and actors speaking at so many words per minute to make a five act play fit into two hours.

When I say strict, I mean according to the theories of the artistic director. They might have been accepted as doctrine in academic circles, or not. I didn’t care. When you’re in the role of stage manager, you learn to ignore such trivia so you can serve the larger task of not having actors kill each other.

However, the odd thing (even for me in my then great naivete about all things theatrical) was that the artistic director hated Shakespeare. Not enough to not program him into his seasons, but get him in private? Johnson, yes, Marlowe, yes, Middleton, yes, Rowley, yes, but Shakespeare?

Untalented hack. Overrated. And so on.

However, being exposed to a rep season of Kyd’s The Spanish Tragedy and Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, I could tell, even with my limited knowledge, that Shakespeare was the better writer. Not that I didn’t enjoy The Spanish Tragedy, but it was melodramatic, and characters in it were about as deep as they needed to be for a melodrama. The Shakespeare characters, on the other hand, came across as real people.

So yes, for some people, Shakespeare sucks. Not me, though! Happy Birthday Shakespeare! 

The Nameless Restaurant

March 11th, 2011 No comments

The Nameless RestaurantIt’s a nameless restaurant, but to make it easier on you, the red and green neon spells out what you can expect to eat.

Sushi. Teppanyaki. Tempura.

Down the street is the nameless coffee store. There, tasteful gold lettering on black trim spells out what you can expect to drink.

Lattes. Cappucinos. French press.

(The coffee shop has a sneaky advantage, they roast their own beans and blow the exhaust out onto the street, hitting the nostrils of all the caffeine addicts on the block like a boxer hitting two hundred and twelve speed bags simultaneously.)

Down the street is the nameless brick building. The graffiti on its side is undecipherable except to the paint-spraying cognoscenti, but you can intuit what you can expect to see all around you.

Danger. Passion. Unrest.

You almost want to run down all the blocks with your hand stretched out and touch each building to have each one whisper its secrets to you like these three are shouting them at you.

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A Tremendous Fat Geek Emergeth

September 9th, 2010 No comments

15) Lo, and the Tremendous Fat Geek did gaze upon 16) And the jackanapes did see that the submission date for the New Ideas Festival was on the next day. 17) And several foul oaths uttered he. 18) But he did cleave his fingers onto a script he did write and finished the act of it.

19) And he did emerge into the moonlight and hied himself to the place of magical duplication which was known to the other night-dwelling desparates as KINKOS BY FED EX. 20) And he had the wizards there prepare his parchments as dictated by the Council of the New Ideas Festival.

21) And then he did return to his den to ready himself to deliver the parchments just in time for the following day.

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Victorian Research

August 29th, 2010 No comments

The Victorians really were a fascinating culture.

The Pearl 

Sexy dirty (NSFW) 

And a shout out to my current research source, Victorian Web.

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The Whores

August 21st, 2010 No comments

(This got stuck on my smartphone by mistake, so I am publishing way late. If you were involved in either production and read this, my apologies.)
(No, this isn’t a plural reference to my blog.)

Powerful play with five very talented women. Based on interviews with Halifax prostitutes, but the script is written well and it never descends into preaching. And the five performances bring it to life.

 Playing at the Toronto Fringe and then moving to the Hamilton Fringe. See it in at least one of those cities.

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Death and the Maiden

May 12th, 2010 No comments

So I saw the local production of Death and the Maiden tonight. 

There are a lor of powerful ideas in the script. Which are expressed by speaking. But, there is a trap when staging powerful ideas that makes you want to plant actors in place while they express them.

Unfortunately, this production fell into that trap. A lot of people standing in place while other people talked. You might as well drop a big arrow from the flies with a sign attached reading Hey folks, this is an actor!

There was a moment at the top of the second act when it came to life. Too bad that energy didn’t stay there for the whole show.

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Testing again

May 5th, 2010 No comments

Ain’t this annoying?

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½ Test-a-roo

April 30th, 2010 No comments

If this works, you should see my handsome face.

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December 28th, 2009 No comments

Made a DVD of my October production today for a friend. Then I had to watch it for quality control purposes.

Dang, I miss that production. Such a great cast. Time maybe to consider a full self-production, which means a bigger risk, but also bigger rewards.

Categories: Doing the work, Producing, Uncategorized Tags: