Burnt orange t-shirts abound at Oil-Can Harry’s, and I have a stack of unread books about Improv and musicals in an HEB bag I carry around like a homeless person. This can only mean one thing: the school year is starting.
This summer began with The Briars at Theatre Emory, as I’ve mentioned. I also borrowed Big Idea Theatre and a few actors for a second read, and so I must thank them for the assist.
Following this, I worked on drafting the full-length version of Small Steps with Caleb Britton. Short summary: Sick of online dating, Skip Powers volunteers to go to Mars — and they say yes. I’ve downloaded several dating apps as research, not that I’m unfamiliar with online dating, and I find this strange internet marketplace fascinating, addictive, and exhausting.
I also, gloriously, get to spend time reading about the Mars rovers and watching videos like this ping pong matrix to imagine how a production would create zero gravity.
I hope to do better at documenting the creation process of this one.
Soon-to-be competing for my creative time will be whatever play I write for my high school students. It’s time to dig our teeth into a realistic drama — after comedies like Nameless in the Desert, Very Best Coffee, Deleted Scenes from Fairy Tales, and [a different] Romeo & Juliet, it’s time. I think the students can handle more mature material, too, so this play may land in a space for mature audiences.
I have eight or nine actors to work with, and already I’m feeling the pinch of sadness that comes with writing a play for so many actors. I know the prospects of a large-cast play (dear God, when did eight actors become “large-cast?”) finding a home outside of self-production are slim.
This semester, the high school students will be writing a musical for next semester. While I will facilitate the creation and development process (and teach playwriting), I’m not going to control the content or execution. Moreover, the high schoolers will be writing for the junior high students this semester. Also, I’m teaching a devising class and a long-form improv class, so this will be the semester of creating theatre…
In the next couple months I hope to get the video of The Jungle Book and [a different] Romeo & Juliet up. They are recordings of the performances, so a bit rough and bouncy, like home movies.
Finally, you can now buy The Jungle Book at Amazon.com. Click the picture and it will take you directly to the listing.