It’s been a while since I’ve updated, and so I vow that this New Year, I shall update every month.
Gentrification finally got to my block, and a nearly 50% rent hike broke up the Rainbow Confetti House in East Austin and swept me south of the river. I’m only now catching up with all of the lost work, including posting about my most recent show…
In Two Truths and Lies, a group of teenagers reinvent themselves at a summer camp.
The impulse for this play was to have teenagers play teenagers in a realistic world. Each part would challenge each actor. I’d previously written Very Best Coffee and [a different] Romeo & Juliet and Nameless in the Desert for my teenage actors, and each of these has some element of theatricalism to the world. I knew that it was time to work with realism, and so I went about fashioning this world.
As the world of the summer camp emerged, it became clear that it was about the lies the kids were telling each other — and themselves. One kid pretends to be from England and that her brother is not her brother; another pretends to be the ghost of a kid’s dead brother. Summer camps frequently appropriate from the cultures of native people, an occurrence that This American Life pointed out in this episode, and the myth-making of the camp became a driving force. The backbone of the play is one kid, Eric, who searches for “the truth,” and believes he’s seen an alien…
In these pictures, you can see our little theatre.
As a side note, the poster was designed by one of my students. I gave him not instructions on how to do it, and so he was surprised by how delighted I was when he finished it. He didn’t realize how much it echoed the book covers of the YA novels I read when I was his age, the I Know What You Did Last Summer or R.L. Stine Fear Street look.
Contact me if you want to read the current draft. It’s an ensemble play, about 100 minutes. I’ll be putting up a page for it when I get a chance.
This project consumed most of my time, but I also managed to work with 14/48 Austin again and squeezed out a ten-minute play about a woman chased by wolves.
Short plays used to be my bread-and-butter, and now they are occasional desserts….
Info on another project or two coming up soon….