“The One-Word Macbeth” to be produced in Australia

I’ve just scored my first production in Australia. Pop Culture Theatre in Melbourne will produced my longish one-act, THE ONE-WORD MACBETH, this summer.

The script will be produced by the theatre’s youth ensemble, and apparently the kids picked the script, or at least had a hand in its selection. The theatre tells me: “Our youth performers are aged 15 – 18 and have asked to perform your piece this year because they want a challenge.”

As I understand it, the script will be done at the theatre, and then entered in three or four competitive festivals put on by the Victorian Drama League.

This will be the second production for the script. Here’s a synopsis:

THE ONE-WORD MACBETH
The Macbeth story, told with each character speaking lines that cost of only one word. Complete with witches and sword-fights, but limited dialogue. Cast: Ten or twelve or fourteen. If ten, 4 male, 4 female, 2 non-gender. If twelve, 4 male, 4 female, 4 non-gender. If fourteen, 4 male, 4 female, 6 non-gender. Running time: 45 minutes.
* Produced by West High School, West, Texas, Feb. 16, 2008.

I have several other “one-word” scripts:

THE ONE-WORD ANTIGONE
The classic Greek drama Antigone, more or less, in which each line consists of just a single word. Ideal for a class project. Cast: 10 – 3 female, 4 female, 3 non-gender.. Running time: Twenty five minutes.

THE ONE-WORD HAMLET
The story of Hamlet, much condensed, in which each actor speaks only one word at a time. Cast: Thirteen — 11 males, 2 females. There’s potential to double two male roles. Running time: Fifteen minutes.
• The eight-minute version of this script was performed in a staged reading in Herring Run Arts Fest, Middleborough, Mass., September 2005.

THE ONE-WORD ODYSSEY
The story of the Odyssey, more or less, in which each line consists of just a single word. Ideal for a class project. Includes monsters and a talking hamburger. Cast: As few as 18 — 9 males, 3 females, 6 non-gender — or as many as 33 — 17 males, 7 females, 9 non-gender. Running time: One hour.

THE ONE-WORD ROMEO AND JULIET
The essence of the Romeo and Juliet story, in one scene, with each
character uttering just one word at a time. Cast: Seven — 6 male, 1 female.
There’s also a slightly inaccurate version that can be done with a cast of four
3 male, 1 female. Running time: Fifteen minutes.

So far in 2015:

* Jan. 3: Staged reading of MISS COW PIE BINGO (full-length), Showtimers, Roanoke, Virginia.
* Feb. 6: Production of MACBETH GOES HOLLYWOOD (long one-act), Gull Lake High School, Richland, Michigan
* Feb. 13: Staged reading of 39 HOURS IN THE SOVIET CITY OF ROSES (full-length), Poetic Theater Productions, New York, N.Y.
* Feb. 13: Staged reading of three short pieces: CHERRY POP TARTS, MY CRIMSON LOVE and LUST, at Garfield Center for the Arts, Chestertown, Maryland.
* Feb. 25: Staged reading of THE RING (one-act) and CAT ON TRIAL (five-minute play), The Readers Repertory Theatre of San Pedro, Los Angeles, California.
* March 25: Staged reading of THE BREAK-IN (five-minute play), The Readers Repertory Theatre of San Pedro, Los Angeles, California.
* March 25-27: Production of HAMLET GOES HOLLYWOOD, High Meadows School, Roswell, Georgia.

Upcoming:

* May 1: THE MONKEY AT THE WEDDING, Acton-Acton-Boxborough Regional High School, Acton, Massachusetts.
* Summer: THE ONE-WORD MACBETH, Pop Culture Theatre, Melbourne, Australia.

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Photos from short film “Kiss My Ashes Goodbye”

Once again, filmmaker Hank Ebert and I have collaborated on a short film for the Bike Shorts film festival which is pretty much what you think it is — short films about bicycles. I’ll post the video once the festival happens on May 1, but here are some shots from the shoot:

Hank Ebert.

Hank Ebert.

Chris Shepard (foreground) as manager of Acme Bike Messengers and Blair Peyton as his incompetent employee.

Chris Shepard (foreground) as manager of Acme Bike Messengers and Blair Peyton as his incompetent employee.

More photos below: Read the rest of this entry »

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Another short play has a staged reading in Los Angeles

My five-minute piece “The Break-In” had a staged reading at The Readers Repertory Theatre of San Pedro, Los Angeles, California on March 25, 2015.

This is the second month in a row the group has done some of my work at their monthly gathering.

THE BREAK-IN
Two elderly women break into a high school, trying to steal a trophy they felt their team should have won back when they were in school. Cast: Four: Two senior women, two men.

So far in 2015:

* Jan. 3: Staged reading of MISS COW PIE BINGO (full-length), Showtimers, Roanoke, Virginia.
* Feb. 6: Production of MACBETH GOES HOLLYWOOD (long one-act), Gull Lake High School, Richland, Michigan
* Feb. 13: Staged reading of 39 HOURS IN THE SOVIET CITY OF ROSES (full-length), Poetic Theater Productions, New York, N.Y.
* Feb. 13: Staged reading of three short pieces: CHERRY POP TARTS, MY CRIMSON LOVE and LUST, at Garfield Center for the Arts, Chestertown, Maryland.
* Feb. 25: Staged reading of THE RING (one-act) and CAT ON TRIAL (five-minute play), The Readers Repertory Theatre of San Pedro, Los Angeles, California.
* March 25: Staged reading of THE BREAK-IN (five-minute play), The Readers Repertory Theatre of San Pedro, Los Angeles, California.
* March 25-27: Production of HAMLET GOES HOLLYWOOD, High Meadows School, Roswell, Georgia.

Upcoming:

* May 1: THE MONKEY AT THE WEDDING, Acton-Acton-Boxborough Regional High School, Acton, Massachusetts.

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Two short plays have staged reading in Los Angeles

Two of my short plays had staged readings in Los Angeles last month, I learned today.

The Readers Repertory Theatre at San Pedro (a neighborhood of LA) featured a reading of the one-act THE RING and the five-minute script CAT ON TRIAL on Feb. 25 at the Croatian Cultural Center of Los Angeles.

Here are synoposes:

THE RING
Sixty years after a close call in a state championship girls basketball game, the star of the losing team still can’t reconcile herself to losing — so she breaks into the home of the star player on the winning team, hoping to steal her championship ring. A poignant story about regrets and sportsmanship. Cast: Two senior females.
• Produced at Haylofters, Burlington, Wisconsin, May 2014. (Placed second in audience vote at festival.)
• Staged reading at Readers Theatre of San Pedro, (Los Angeles), February 2015.

CAT ON TRIAL (The Active Retirement of Irene Anderson)
A retiree puts the neighbor’s cat on trial because it caught a bird. Two versions available. Cast: Two seniors — one male, one female.
Staged reading at Readers Theatre of San Pedro, (Los Angeles), February 2015

So far in 2015:

* Jan. 3: Staged reading of MISS COW PIE BINGO (full-length), Showtimers, Roanoke, Virginia.
* Feb. 6: Production of MACBETH GOES HOLLYWOOD (long one-act), Gull Lake High School, Richland, Michigan
* Feb. 13: Staged reading of 39 HOURS IN THE SOVIET CITY OF ROSES (full-length), Poetic Theater Productions, New York, N.Y.
* Feb. 13: Staged reading of three short pieces: CHERRY POP TARTS, MY CRIMSON LOVE and LUST, at Garfield Center for the Arts, Chestertown, Maryland.
* Feb. 25: Staged reading of THE RING (one-act) and CAT ON TRIAL (five-minute play), The Readers Repertory Theatre of San Pedro, Los Angeles, California.

Upcoming:
* March 25-27: Production of HAMLET GOES HOLLYWOOD, High Meadows School, Roswell, Georgia.
* May 1: THE MONKEY AT THE WEDDING, Acton-Acton-Boxborough Regional High School, Acton, Massachusetts.

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Photo from “The Monkey at the Wedding” in Massachusetts

The cast of The Monkey At the Wedding. From right to left, Top row: Father of Bride, Groom, Best man, Minister, Granny, Monkey, Mother of bride.  Bottom row: Pluto, Mother of groom, Zoe, Maid of Honor, Fatima, and the Bride.

The cast of The Monkey At the Wedding. From right to left,
Top row: Father of Bride, Groom, Best man, Minister, Granny, Monkey, Mother of bride.
Bottom row: Pluto, Mother of groom, Zoe, Maid of Honor, Fatima, and the Bride.

Here is the cast photo from the first day of rehearsal for my one-act THE MONKEY AT THE WEDDING, which will be produced in May at Acton-Boxborough Regional High School in Acton, Massachusetts.

This will be the world premiere.

Now, for an interesting story. I wrote the script several years ago, inspired by a local news story about a man who was trying to find a monkey to be ringbearer at his wedding. Don’t think he ever found one, though.

The director in Acton contacted me out of the blue — thanks, search engine! — and asked for some possible scripts. Eventually, she settled on this one.

Except, after auditions she had a problem. The show had a cast of 12 but she had 13 kids audition and she didn’t have the heart to turn one away. We bounced about some ideas, about splitting some characters in two but eventually settled on just writing in a 13th character. So I did.

I might mention that this “task mistress” of a director is a 9th grader. Bravo!

THE MONKEY AT THE WEDDING
A wedding goes afoul when the ringbearer — a monkey — swallows the ring. Chaos, and comedy, ensues. Features a motorcycle gang, and someone in a monkey suit. Cast: 12 or 13 — 5 male, 5 or 6 female, 2 non-gender. Running time: 30 minutes.

So far in 2015:

* Jan. 3: Staged reading of MISS COW PIE BINGO, Showtimers, Roanoke, Virginia.
* Feb. 6: Production of MACBETH GOES HOLLYWOOD, Gull Lake High School, Richland, Michigan
* Feb. 13: Staged reading of 39 HOURS IN THE SOVIET CITY OF ROSES, Poetic Theater Productions, New York, N.Y.
* Feb. 13: Staged reading of three short pieces: CHERRY POP TARTS, MY CRIMSON LOVE and LUST, at Garfield Center for the Arts, Chestertown, Maryland.

Upcoming:
* March 25-27: Production of HAMLET GOES HOLLYWOOD, High Meadows School, Roswell, Georgia.
* May 1: THE MONKEY AT THE WEDDING, Acton-Acton-Boxborough Regional High School, Acton, Massachusetts.

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New York staged reading of “Softball Is Life” postponed

Alas, the staged reading of my full-length script SOFTBALL IS LIFE, scheduled for March 19 in New York, has been postponed indefinitely.

The producing theatre has lost access to the venue it had planned to use. It’s looking for a new home and vows to stage the reading then.

Until then, here’s a link to photos and such from the previous staged reading in Virginia in 2014.

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Three short pieces performed in Maryland at Valentine’s event

Three of my short pieces were performed as staged readings at the Garfield Center for the Arts in Chestertown, Maryland on Feb. 13, 2015 as part of the center’s Valentine’s weekend event.

Specifically, it was an event for the reading of erotic poetry.

My pieces — CHERRY POP TARTS, MY CRIMSON LOVE and LUST — aren’t poetry. But they are monologues. Whether they qualify as erotic, well, I guess tastes vary, eh?

Get your mind out of the gutter. CHERRY POP TARTS really is about the breakfast pastry. MY CRIMSON LOVE is about a Norway maple. And LUST, well, LUST really is about LUST — one of the pieces from the ten-minute script called THE SEVEN DEADLY SINS: THE MONOLOGUES.

Coincidentally, these were performed the same night that I had a staged reading of one of my full-length scripts in New York: Poetic Theater Productions did a reading of my dark play about Chernobyl, 39 HOURS IN THE SOVIET CITY OF ROSES.

Upcoming:
* March 19: Staged reading of SOFTBALL IS LIFE, Sundog Theatre, New York, N.Y.

So far in 2015:
* Feb. 13: Staged reading of 39 HOURS IN THE SOVIET CITY OF ROSES, Poetic Theater Productions, New York, N.Y.
* Feb. 13: Staged reading of three short pieces: CHERRY POP TARTS, MY CRIMSON LOVE and LUST, at Garfield Center for the Arts, Chestertown, Maryland.
* Feb. 6: Production of MACBETH GOES HOLLYWOOD, Gull Lake High School, Richland, Michigan.
* Jan. 3: Staged reading of MISS COW PIE BINGO, Showtimers, Roanoke, Virginia.

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