Monday, September 30, 2013

Between Projects

It's the last day of September and unless the House and the Senate can come to a budget agreement by midnight tonight, our government will shut down. When I first heard this I was legitimately freaking out because I thought it meant like zombie-apocalypse-America-goes-crazy-looting-no-law shutdown. What actually happens is that offices and facilities that are deemed “non-essential”  shut down and millions of Federal workers will find themselves out of a job. The police will still exist, the military will still exist, whic means I dont need to start preparing for the Thunderdome (thank baby jesus). What surprised me further was that this had actually already happened in 1995. From November 14 through November 19, 1995 and from December 16, 1995 to January 6, 1996, for a total of 28 days. While this shutdown seems more and more likely, I wonder how long it will last, and what the millions of Federal workers who will be out of jobs will do for money…

My old friend... Raddy the radial arm saw.
Right now I am between projects, and it’s very weird. Since I landed hear a year and 2 months ago, I had always been working on a show or getting ready to work on a show. Now, having nothing to work on, I’m kinda tweaking out. Theatre is my drug and I inadvertently quit cold turkey.  So I’ve been finding other ways to occupy my creative-theatre needs. Yesterday I spent all day striking props, sets, and furniture for Rattlestick Theatre. A week or so ago I worked as a carpenter for a private school in the Upper West Side. I’ve also been doing lots of writing because it’s easy, stress relieving, and most importantly free.

I’m currently in the works on developing an adaptation of The Winter’s Tale by William Shakespeare that a producer is interested in work-shopping. I love The Winter’s Tale because it is just that: a tale. In Shakespeare's time  the phrase “winter’s tale” was not meant to be taken seriously and was known to be a fantastic story that didn’t focuses on details like continuity or credibility. If you wanted to draw a parallel with a modern day phrase, and I sincerely hope you do, it would be equitable to what an “old wives tale” means to us. Shakespeare takes random outrageous events like a man being chased off stage by a bear, or a dead woman coming to life after 16 years, or a young baby being abandoned in the woods and surviving with no explanation as to how, and weaves together a funny sort-of hyper pastoral play.
So rather than discount these oddities as bad writing I am, key word here, attempting to adapt a play that embrace these quirks as heightened and fantastical story elements to create a very theatrical play. I want to tell you all more about it, but I’m only halfway done. Plus, it would ruin all the surprises! Suffice it to say, I am having alot of fun writing it and I can't wait to start workshopping it. 
My entire being is trying to convince me that, because I’m not directing something, I am failing at life. My friends tell me that I am stupid for thinking that and I say to them “Hey, don’t call me stupid.” They are right though. We all go through lulls in our life where there just isn’t anything to work on creatively or otherwise.

It's all about perspective...
 I may be out of directoral oppertunites right now, but what puts in it perspective for me is this:  I live in New York City, I have a full time job in the theatre industry, I have a good apartment in a great neighborhood, a loving family, supportive friends, and food in my fridge. I could be worse off. If the House and the Senate can’t agree on a budget, millions of Americans will be out of work and struggling to make ends meet. Let’s all just hope that an agreement can be reached by midnight tonight because, at the end of the day, all anyone really wants it to be able to comfortably live their lives in peace and persue happinesses… Until next time!

"Well, that's easy for you to take that kind of physical risk – you've got government health care." –Jon Stewart on Ted Cruz speaking for 21 hours in opposition of Obamacare

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