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1000 Playwright Interviews The first interview I posted was on June 3, 2009.  It was Jimmy Comtois.  I decided I would start interview...

Feb 28, 2008

How to start a theater company

An article about a young theater company I was recently introduced to.


plug for blue coyote

to Blue Coyote Theater Group's

Sunday, March 2nd, 7pm

@Access Theater
380 Broadway, 4th Floor
(Broadway and White St.)

Join us on the Happy Endings set to celebrate our latest hit and our upcoming new work!

Hors d'ouvres by celebrated chef Ed Cotton and pastry chef Mina Pizarro of Veritas, prepared by the staff
Open bar
Live entertainment
prizes and raffles


Top shelf hooch and delicious food and surprise performances and tons of your friends dancing on stripper cubes and backstage antics and spinning lights and giveaways and you KNOW it always ends with someone kissin' on someone and sheepish phone calls the next day... All This Action for $25.00 are you KIDDING ME?!!

Feb 26, 2008

I read the Golden Compass and the two books that follow and I have to say I was blown away. I've been struggling with trying to figure out how to write about god in a non-annoying way while not really knowing what I actually think about god including whether or not he exists. And Pullman just does it. He manages to write about the Christian god many of us know while at the same time taking us into a different world and letting different facets of spirituality and our selves and the good and bad things surrounding religion while telling a highly engaging adventure story.

The greatest thing about it however, is the love story that really only develops in the last book. I don't want to say too much about it because I don't want to give it away and I'm hoping you'll read it. As a lover of love stories, I have to say, this is one of the best I've seen and the way he connects god and love and sin at the end is simply elegant. But these are books that broke my heart and I highly recommend them.

coming soon

March 10 A reading in LA of Herbie A reading in NYC of Waldo

March 26-29 F4F at a college in Michigan

April 17-27 F4F at a college in ND

April 18-27 Waldo in a theater in Wisconsin


I discovered saturday I am very allergic to aspirin which means I am also probably allergic to all these things. If you recall the doctor already told me I'm allergic to all these things: clams, corn, soybeans, wheat, peanuts, walnuts, scallops, shrimp, codfish, eggwhites, and milk. I already knew I was allergic to chicken and turkey. So what am I eating? good question. I'll have to go back to the allergist soon and it also might be helpful to find a dietician. I finished the first act of my tv spec and hope to finish it this weekend.

Feb 25, 2008

Travis in TX on Regional Theatre


then, now, and Brooke Berman

She continued: "You used to be able to work a 20-hour week, pay the
rent on your tiny studio, and still write your plays. That's no longer


how to be a lady


twenty bucks

affordable tickets til 2011 at Signature (nyc)

h/t daisey



more daisey How theater failed


failing america

response to daisey's article


Feb 22, 2008


WHAT: The Rapid Response Team's Oscar Nite Spectacular! WHERE: The Bowery Poetry Club (308 Bowery just north of 1st st.) WHEN: Sunday, February 24th, 8PM HOW MUCH: $10.00 at the door STORIES WE'RE LOOKING INTO THIS WEEK INCLUDE: Odd ingredients in prescription drugs***Satellites Crashing to Earth***The end of Bush and Cheney's friendship*** Evolution in Public Schools*** The Return of Lost*** Mass Weddings in Mexico*** Broken Violins *** WNYC Pledge Drives***The Protect America Act and MORE! Also... if you want to catch up on all things RRT-related, check out our website where you can not only read all about us, you can also download or stream last week's show.

from Jeremy Kareken

ARCTE(c)...T is now accepting submissions for its Contest of the Year award. The American Repertory Company Theater Ensemble Company... Theater is pleased to announce its first annual playwriting contest contest to find the finest playwriting contest in America. Theater Companies are asked to submit one play with the following criteria: 1) It must have won your contest 2) It must encompass the struggles of the working class, disabled, minorities, women, children and disenfranchised animals both alive and non-living. 3) The cast cannot be larger than 2 people, preferably Underage African American Handicapped Chickens... both posthumous members of Equity or equivalent union 3.5) The play must answer the problems of war with the "answer of peace," both internationally and personally 4) The play must take place on (or under) two chairs. No stage will be available for use. Send forty three copies of the play, and a readers fee of $1494.33 (please, no checks, just money orders or stamps) to ARCTE(c)T... T Contest of the Year Award. Winners will be able to hear the cast list and set requirements read silently at our facility as well as astipend of $40 dollars per diem. Playwrights must stay at the Omni Sheraton International, but a special rate will be provided of $1900 per night. If selected, the playwright will promise to scratch his/her name off the title page and insert "I Promise That The Real Author of this Play Was Not Me, but the Artistic Executive Director Manager of ARTCTE(c), Jeremy Kareken. Really. Absolutely. "This, my friends, is the contest of contests. Don't miss out on the chance to have your theater have someone else's script looked at by someone who can read. All proceeds will go to the benefit. And be used. Jeremy is here: http://www.no-monkey.com/

it's snowing

Feb 21, 2008


Went to Joe's charming class last night and read student's short plays and talked about them. It was a great time. then rushed down to Ars Nova Play Group to have my one man show Bee Eater and Escaper read out loud. Went over well, I think. Some work I can do, but overall I was happy to see that the two plays fit together cohesively.

Feb 20, 2008

Gus on play


someone is wrong on the internet


yesterday and today

An email I wrote yesterday to my friend Larry followed by his response: I'm going to Joe's undergrad playwriting class tomorrow. This is what I told him I would say: I'll start by saying, "no playwright is happy. It's a miserable life. Even the most successful are completely miserable, even if they somehow are capable of making a lot of money." then I'll move on to "no one reads plays anymore. even if you get your play published someday, no one will ever read it. There was a time when it was literature, but that time is long gone." then "if you want a lot of people to see your work, you should somehow land a job in tv or write a film. Most likely you will never get a film made or land a job in tv but if you do, the work you make will be forcibly watered down by your bosses or by executives." "On the other hand, if you want to work in theater, the only way to do so is to water down your work yourself. round all the rough edges. make the "arc" that everyone likes. you must appear to be doing something edgy or new or risky. You must appear to write a play about something but if you actually write a play about something, or write something edgy, no one will ever do that play. which is why you may as well write for tv. you're more likely to get something risky on hbo than on an american stage. although honestly, none of you kids will ever get anywhere near either of those places unless you have a famous parent." "you may think that you have some sort of control in theater that you don't in hollywood but you don't really. and you will never make a living unless you write a big musical that isn't about anything that people like to sing." how's that for an opener? To which my friend Larry replied: There is one alternative to the bleak (and mostly true) options that you present. The artist can work independently. Funding the work him- or herself. Or at least privately, through donations. This obviously means doing things on the cheap. But doing things on the cheap on your own dime often yields greater freedom than working with the crass for-profit bigwigs or through the pernicious and often petty non-profit sector. Anything that's away from institutions. Making it a truly personal kind of art. There are enormous limitations and risks one takes in such a venture, but, at the end of the day, one owns every triumph, along with every mistake. And don't I know that firsthand. I truly believe that the main hope for theatre in this country is for more theatre artists to work independently. Even if it means a parlour-theater, or a living room-theatre, or a studio-apartment-with-or-without-a-bed-that-folds-up-theatre, or an abandoned-school auditorium-theatre, or an empty-barn-theatre, or a conference-room-when-the-suits-aren't-around theatre, rather than renting a costly off- or off-off-broadway house, which is always an option, but a financially costly one. when the people like you, Adam, and the people like myself, and all the bloggers, and all the people in Joe's class, and all the downtown crowd, and all the people that the downtown crowd would never give a second glance to in midtown, and all the people who like what's happening in midtown but have run out of options for what to see or what to be involved in, when all of us are willing to attend and/or produce this independent - and by that I mean TRULY and NOT CHICLY independent - theatre, then theatre as an art form will finally grow its balls back. Theatre seems so lamentably and inescapably middle class to me. If we take capitalism out of the mix, or at least try to, the way a garage band does in rock before they sign to a major label, the way any busker passing the hat does, the way poets reading in a café do, then we would take our art, at first, off the grid, but onto, at a certain point, a larger canvas beyond the grid. Please feel free to quote me in this class and to refer anyone with questions or arguments directly to me. l [NOTE: Joe, of course, does not want me to say those things. I’ll let you know how it goes. Class is at 5.]

from Marsha Norman


Feb 18, 2008

I recommend

In Bruges--Martin McDonough's film. Saw it last night. It's pretty
great. Funny, sad, surreal at times but completely riveting the
entire time.


The Dishwasher by Pete Jordan. I couldn't put it down. This guy
makes dishwashing, unemployment and wandering completely fascinating.


Feb 14, 2008

postcard from college in North Dakota

What I'm doing now

Finishing up writing that one person show Trying to outline (and then write) a spec script for 30 Rock This weekend, my cousin is in CT so I'm training it up there to see him and his family and then running back down to shoot a short film Sunday morning

Feb 8, 2008

Alive and Easy to Find

I got an email this morning from a college student who is directing my play Food For Fish as one of his school projects. Because I'm alive and easy to locate online, he can ask me questions about the play and tell me about his production. Because I am poor, I can't actually go see it but that doesn't make me any less happy that it's happening. Earlier this morning I posted a comment on Jason's blog in response to something Mr. Walters said: I don't know about other playwrights but I also want my work to get seen. I want my words to be heard and my characters to breathe in many different bodies. I didn't get in this to have my play on a big stage. I got in it because I was an actor on a small stage and I fell in love with theater. And I wanted to make theater and I wanted my plays to be done all over the country on tiny stages. But eventually I figured out that the only way to get it to the tiny stages was to first get it on the big stages. I wish that weren't the way it is, but that's how it is. (Not to say anything bad about big stages because I bet it's pretty fucking great to have a show on a big stage.) In any case, what I'm saying is one theater is not enough. One town is not enough. Do I want a home? Yes, very much. But that home should introduce my work into the world, not keep the world from seeing it. You can see the discussion here to understand the context and what Scott is proposing in order to give playwrights homes. This student wouldn't be doing my play now if it weren't published. It wouldn't be published if it hadn't gotten a pretty great production in New York. And I'm sure the good review from the Times didn't hurt either. And after this student production, there will be another in North Dakota soon after. I am thrilled that my play will be a part of the early careers of these kids. And I am thrilled that it will be a part of their lives at this point, even if they don't all go on to be theater professionals, I am honored to play a part from afar. I mean, I'm sure Edward Albee would do in a pinch, but I'm glad it's me instead.

This Sunday at 8


Hope to see you there.

Feb 1, 2008

Marisa's post where is the female writer


Durang's take on Obama

Well worth a look


what's going on

So for a long time now I've been trying to write this one man show. I wrote about 40 minutes of it from the perspective of a dog and I heard it out loud a couple times and liked it a lot. But I kept trying to figure out what would go before it or after it. I wrote a ten minute thing that I thought would go before it that Travis and Kip worked on for me and we did at Little Theater but I realized it wasn't the right thing. Now, I think I've finally figured it out. I'm working on a second related one person show that will go after it. I'm trying to get it done before the 20th when I am presenting at Ars Nova. Here is a small section from what I wrote yesterday: THOMAS Oh, the story. I was going to tell you the story. OK, so I came up with this when I was a kid. When my mom and dad were yelling, I used to go hide out in the dog’s pen and read comic books and the dog would put his head in my lap. Well, anyway, that’s when I came up with the Escapist. He’s a superhero, you see, who helps people escape. Like if you’re in a loveless marriage or a dead end job or in a lot of debt, he comes a long and helps you get out of these situations. Or if you’re like kidnapped, he’ll help you escape from that too. Here, let me illustrate. (THOMAS removes his clothing in one swift motion and underneath, he has a superhero costume with a big E on the chest.) I had this made. (The lights change. THOMAS becomes vigilant.) What’s that? Do I hear someone who needs the help of the Escapist? (THOMAS pretends to swoop down—perhaps he flies--and help someone.) I am the Escapist. How can I help you escape? And then the person says something like “I can’t get a good job without going to college but how can I afford college without a good job?” And the Escapist is like, “I can help.” And they work on the college application together and then they fill out loan applications. But then the person is in like a lot of debt from school and so they’re trapped again. So the escapist comes along again and says, “How can I help?” And so they rob a bank together because sometimes the Escapist does something like that. And then the Escapist flies off to help someone else. What’s that? Do I hear someone in need of some help? (The phone rings. The lights return to normal.) Oh. I better put my clothes back on. This is not considered proper attire for the office. (He snaps all the snaps, puts all his clothes back on, while answering the phone.)