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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Two staged readings coming up in New York

I’m thrilled to announce that I have not one, but two staged readings of my full-length scripts coming up in New York.

Poetic Theater will do 39 HOURS IN THE SOVIET CITY OF ROSES, about Chernobyl, sometime in February, more or less. UPDATE: This will be Friday, February 13 at the Wild Project, located at 195 East 3rd Street in New York City’s East Village.

Sundog Theatre will do SOFTBALL IS LIFE sometime in March, more or less. UPDATE: This will be Thursday, March 19, at St. George’s Theatre, 35 Hyatt Street, Staten Island.

These will mark the third and fourth staged readings of full-length work I’ve had in New York. In June 2013, Barefoot Theatre did THE BALLAD OF ALEJANDRO LOPEZ and in December, Gi60 Extended Play Series did KLAUS.

Stay tuned for dates and details! Here’s a synopsis of each show:

39 HOURS IN THE SOVIET CITY OF ROSES
A dark look at what happened in the city next to the Chernobyl plant after the accident in 1986. It took 39 hours to evacuate the city. Most of the weekend, people went about their business, unaware they were being showered with radioactivity. Cast: At least 10 — 3 females, 3 children or teens of either gender, at least 4 males; number of males can be expanded up to 20 depending on how you feel about doubling.

SOFTBALL IS LIFE
A sports play for women that isn’t really about sports. A former high school softball star sits in prison, estranged from her 14-year-old daughter, who has inherited the woman’s talent for pitching but doesn’t realize it. While the mom tries to contact her daughter, the girl spends her time trying to avoid a dangerous situation in the home where she’s living. Cast: Eight — Four females (one to play a teenage girl), three males, one non-gender.

SOFTBALL IS LIFE had a previous staged reading in January 2014 at Showtimers in Roanoke, Virginia, and has been subsequently revised.

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Photos from staged reading of “Miss Cow Pie Bingo”

Emma Sala, as Meredith, gets everyone's attention. Well, except maybe her father, who's passed out drunk (Zeke, played by Tim Kennard.

Emma Sala, as Meredith, gets everyone’s attention. Well, except maybe her father, who’s passed out drunk (Zeke, played by Tim Kennard).

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I held a staged reading of my new play, MISS COW PIE BINGO, on Saturday, January 3, 2015 at Showtimers in Roanoke, Virginia. It’s a Southern comedy.

The basic plot: A Texas mother desperately wants one of her daughters to win a beauty pageant. Problem is, neither of them have any interest. One just wants to shoot guns. The other is a video gamer. That doesn’t stop the mother from hiring a pageant consultant anyway, who turns out to be a fraud. Comedy ensues. There’s also a robot.

The reading was directed by Melora Kordos.

The cast:

Rhonda, the mom: Heather Sexton
Meredith, the oldest daughter: Emma Sala
Thomasina, aka, Zelda, the youngest daughter: Gwyneth Strope
Zeke, the father: Tim Kennard
Libby, the crazy grandmother: Nancy Lawrence
Debbie, the pageant consultant: Kelly Anglim
Horace, the newspaper editor: Patrick Kennerly
The coffee machine that’s been turned into a robot: Jason Patrick Palmer

Stage directions were read by Luke Clark.

Here are some photos from the event (or you can see the full set here.) Also, some audience feedback is at the very bottom.
Read the rest of this entry »

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Photos from “Demoting Pluto” in New Mexico

My one-act DEMOTING PLUTO was produced in November at the Explora Science Center and Children’s Museum in Albuquerque, New Mexico as part of a festival of short plays about science.

A fast-paced commentary on modern-day attack ads in politics, and the public’s lack of scientific knowledge. A political consultant and an astronomy professor team up to wage a media campaign aimed at reclassifying Pluto from a planet to something less than a planet. A comedy, with a sharp point. Includes
audience participation, and two alternate endings, depending on the outcome.
Cast: Six — 4 males, 2 females. Running time: 30 minutes.

Kristina Caffrey and Victoria Sullivan as newscasters reviewing election returns. Check out the fancy fake knobs on the TV.

Kristina Caffrey and Victoria Sullivan as newscasters reviewing election returns. Check out the fancy fake knobs on the TV.

JJ Suffron, who played the political consultant, and Neil Fauloconbridge who portrayed Prof. Thompson.

JJ Suffron, who played the political consultant, and Neil Fauloconbridge who portrayed Prof. Thompson.

Almost the entire cast.

Almost the entire cast.

Victoria Sullivan, Ninette S. Mordaunt, Kris Montoya, and Kristina Caffrey.

Victoria Sullivan, Ninette S. Mordaunt, Kris Montoya, and Kristina Caffrey.

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