Tuesday, September 12, 2017

SLP is working on 2 musicals, FCH (4, 5, & 6), 2 new plays, a tv show, 2 movies, and her band...

Earlier this summer, I visited Vermont. While chit chatting with a local, he joked that Vermonters usually have more than one job - like Jamaicans, a reference to the Hey Mon skits from the In Living Color comedy sketch tv series from the 90s. This past weekend, as I arrived at Signature center early to experience the second of Suzan-Lori Parks tragic red letter plays - In the Blood, the playwright herself was in the cafe performing with her band - sula and the noise. As I stood there, I recalled listening to a talk where the playwright itemized ALL the projects she is working on:

  • Writing two musicals - one an adaptation of The Harder They Come and the other a musical with Timbaland
  • Working on Father Comes Home - Parts 4, 5 and 6
  • Two new plays that - she would not disclose the titles but promises that they are fun
  • A television show
  • Two different movies
  • And she writes songs and plays with her band (you can see her some Saturdays at Signature Center)

Then I recalled my conversation with the Vermonter and thought Suzan-Lori Parks could very well be a Vermonter...better yet, a Jamaican...

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Playwright Notes: The Red Letter Plays

Suzan-Lori Parks on The Red Letter Plays - Fucking A and In the Blood:
It was as if they were twins in the womb of my consciousness, twins in my mind. And one couldn't get out because they were entangled together. So when "In the Blood" came out easily, then "Fucking A" was very easy to write. They're sisters, these two plays. Both asking that question that I seem to keep asking in my work: "Who are you to me?" And out of that questioning, hopefully, will come an understanding. 

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Lin-Manuel on Musicals

Quote from GQ article - Lin-Manuel Miranda Can’t Believe You Think Musicals Are Nerdy
...Music does things to our brains and our hearts that words alone don’t. When all of the dominoes fall the right way, I don’t think there’s anything more thrilling.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

WTF Stopover - Jen Silverman's "The Roommate"

For the 4th holiday, I headed up to Vermont - my first visit to the green mountain state. On the way up, I just had to make a stopover in cozy Williamstown to catch one of the plays in this year's festival - Jen Silverman's The Roommate.

Oh, what a treat experiencing this delicious comedy starring the amazing S. Epatha Merkerson and Jane Kaczmarek.

Play Synopsis: 
Empty-nested and alone in her Midwestern home, Sharon (Merkerson) takes on a roommate, Robyn (Kaczmarek), who has just arrived from New York City. Before she has even unpacked, Robyn challenges everything about Sharon’s way of life. Book clubs, 80s pop music, and the occasional shared toke complicate their unlikely but enduring relationship, even as they venture into dangerous territory. Mike Donahue directs Jen Silverman’s new play which celebrates unexpected re-invention later in life.

WTF's The Roommate ends this weekend. However, if given the opportunity, it is definitely worth catching a production of Jen Silverman's gem.

At The Williams Inn, a wall features the plays in this year's festival: 

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Quote from Samuel Beckett's "Happy Days"

Winnie in Samuel Beckett's Happy Days:
One keeps putting off - putting up - for fear of putting up - too soon - and the day goes by - quite by - without one's having put up - at all. 

Friday, June 2, 2017

Villain: DeBlanks

Earlier this week, I dropped into 54 Below to check out my first performance of Billy Mitchell's Villain:DeBlanks. What a raucous time I had at the fill-in-the-blanks comedy. And to top it all off, proceeds from the performance benefited the New York Civil Liberties Union

Cast for the Evening
Bob Frapples..........Stephen Wallem
Lynn O'Liam..........Dale Soules
Aaron Matires..........Ben Rimalower
Fonda Jewels..........Bebe Neuwirth
Rhoda Pony..........Brenda Braxton
Orson Buggy..........Tony Sheldon

How The Evening Works
The cast works the room asking for adjectives, nouns and verbs, which they note on their script. This is lots of fun because the audience actually gets to interact with the cast (something I rarely get to do). Also, after a drink or two, who knows what kind of words people are throwing out. Then, unrehearsed, the cast reads the Philip DeBlanks’ whodunnit, improvising along the way. The audience then decides whodunnit...

Loads of fun. 
Good evening. 
Good cause. 


Monday, May 22, 2017

Quote from Lillian Hellman's "The Little Foxes"

Addie in Lillian Hellman's The Little Foxes:
..there are people who eat the earth and eat all the people on it like in the Bible with the locusts. Then, there are people who stand around and watch them eat it. Sometimes I think it ain't right to stand and watch them do it. 

Friday, May 19, 2017

Meat Pie and Sondheim

Downtown's Barrow Street Theater is serving up meat pies and Sondheim (Tooting Arts Club style). Both are absolutely delicious! Here is more on the meat pie (and mash).
The Tradition of Pie and Mash - 
Good old-fashioned “pie and mash” has been a London food tradition since the days of Queen Victoria. A small meat pie and a generous helping of mashed potato with an optional addition of the steaming parsley sauce known as “liquor,” pie and mash became the staple dish for many hungry families and workers alike. Affordable, filling and tasty–it was often the only hot meal one might eat in a day.
Bill Yosses' Meat Pie and Mash -
Flaky Crust Chicken Pot Pie with Mushrooms, Carrots, Onions, Jerusalem Artichokes, Black Truffle Zest, served with Yukon Gold Smashed Potatoes and optional Italian Parsley & Herbs Sauce.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

It's Spring Thyme at Signature Center

At the Spring Signature Cocktail Hour, the mixologist shook things up and taught theater lovers how to make Spring Thyme, a vodka based cocktail that can be summed up in one word -- YUMMY! 

I enjoyed the cocktail very much and even had a pitcher stirred up for my beloved mom on Mother's Day. Check out the recipe if you want to stay refreshed during the Spring heat wave or simply want to enjoy a cocktail before heading to the theater.