Saturday, January 17, 2009

In the Works: Loss of Breath

As we prepared Playlab NYC’s Loss of Breath application for the New York International Fringe Festival, Jennifer and I thought it was a good opportunity to sit down and hear the most recent draft.

If you have browsed out website at all you no doubt are aware that back in April of last year we had a two week workshop of Loss of Breath. For two weeks Todd Courson, John Pieza and I took the script apart and began the work of putting it back together again. Armed with Kenn Adams “How to Improvise a Full-Length Play,” Jeremy Whelan’s Tape Technique, and John Wright excellent clowning book, “Why Is That So Funny?” the three of us went back to Poe’s original short story. Using these improv and clown techniques we stripped the story down to its skeleton, allowing me to see which of the actions in the text were superfluous to the story of the play.

After two very productive weeks, I spent the next five months going over what I had learned. In October I had finished a new draft of the show, and decided we should work toward inclusion in the 2009 NYC Fringe.

Wishing to hear this new draft with fresh ears, this past Thursday Jennifer and I met with Jonathan Wiener and Bob Stack. If you saw the Playlab NYC production of The Tempest at Socrates Sculpture Park in June then I don’t need to tell you too much about Jonathan and Bob. Jonathan and Bob as Trinculo and Stephano did a lot of The Tempests’ comic heavy lifting. They had such wonderful chemistry together that I was eager to hear what they brought to the piece.

A casual environment with friends, the four of us sat around a table listening to this new draft. Needless to say the reading went well. I am thankful to Bob and Jonathan for taking time to sit down with us again. We are proceeding with our application. Keep your fingers crossed and check back again for more updates.

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