Tuesday, March 27, 2007

how we're directing 'em: notes on the 7 Suzan-Lori Parks' plays i'm producing at the Jubilee Theater

potential theatrical musicians:

Rachella Parks ?
Theater Fire ?
Shannon Jackson ?
Swirve ?
young Rebecca Montalvo ?

David & Quincy / as twins?

Titles of the Constants:

1. Remember Who You Are

2. Action in Inaction

3. Inaction in Action

trio of short plays--also by Parks, which are called THE CONSTANTS. These 3 short short plays have 1-2 characters each, and I had you in mind for one of them. (These scripts, mind you, are more about mood, tempo, and blocking than about DIALOGUE.)

I also was HOPING that Chris could bring his musicianship
to the project by playing soundtrack music for the THREE
CONSTANTS i am directing. Each play has a different mood,
so there would be variety. With his effects pedals, etc., it
would be very interesting to have him accompany the performances.

Rehearsals would be minimal, probably on Saturdays (morning, afternoon, early evening???)

I have (as production organization SOUND CULTURE) signed up to produce 7 plays by Suzan-Lori Parks, the Pulitzer Prize-
winning (the first African-American Woman to win, by the way) playwright. She wrote TOPDOG UNDERDOG. and has written
many other, lesser known, plays. Her stuff rocks.

The 7 plays we are producing will be DIRECTED BY 7 DIFFERENT DIRECTORS, who i've already selected and who are all locally-based. I am not one of those 7 directors, but

time of the entire program will be about 1 hour, 20 minutes.

Downtown FW location----very established African-American theater called the Jubilee Theater.

to Tamitha Curiel:
It seemed, because you are in Dallas and couldn't rehearse
alot with me in person, and also because you have a theater
background, that I should just give you creative "authority"
and "space" to make choices about INACTION IN ACTION.
It just seemed practical, also, because you were going to
pull in props & things from your household (like kids' toys, etc.),
and know better what you have to choose from.

The plate-spinning concept occurred to me because it is my
personal image of how I feel when I'm overwhelmed with
multi-tasking and deadlines staring me in the face.
That sheer panic of having so so much to do, and being
deathly aware of the clock eternally ticking, edging us
to inclusion of our work, ambitions, and ultimately, our lives.
I always felt really sorry for the circus guy trying to keep
all those plates going.--- For a performance, I liked the
notion that those sticks (with paper plates perched atop or taped
atop) would be banging to the floor a few seconds after
you turned away from them.  What an insult to your effort...and
the hopelessness of the situation strikes me as a mix of
pathos and humor.

2-3 minutes duration will probably be long enough to get the point across.


set is limited ---- so environment has got to be interesting.

structually everything is light, minimal.

Greek Tragedy & Jerry Springer - to be directed by Yvonne Duque
toga & tablets look - would like some chant-ey chorus intro.

First Beginning - to be directed by KelleyDianne

would love music for “performances” sections

The look is very simple. I was thinking only blue light  as if we were outside under the star and moon. Two chairs or stools (if stools varying heights). and Bro. Chris.With each scene the lights should fade on us and go the chris in his performance and fade back up on us. when that happens we will be in a different tableaux/chairs(or stools) re-positioned. and so on.

I met with musician Chris Curiel
last week and he is happy to
play live music for your segment
of the show, FIRST BEGINNING.

Chris has a fantabulous sequin-y
multicolored gown which he will
wear for this particular play, to
distinguish him visually from
the other plays.

He is an amazing one-man musical wonder.

I would also LOVE to read any notes you may share about the LOOK of this piece. Am trying to get a feel of each work, in order to ascertain how much variety and complexity is emerging from our processes of production.

Look - to be directed by Stormi Demerson
performed by Paul Doucet, Michele Renee, Reign.

two speaking characters - are in an art gallery
artpiece is performed by an actor (pre-set)

Stitches - to be directed by Rob Bosquez
performed by Rob Bosquez and Annie

Home TV show actor will wheel in a cart of fabrics to demonstrate.
War sounds audio will be suggestive, rather than representational.

6’4” - to be directed by Laney Yarber
Each rung on a ladder will have a different sound, up and down.  maybe 5 minutes for entire play.

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