Saturday, February 23, 2008

Presenting the Dynamo Theater Lab

You might have noticed that I've been posting less frequently on my blog these days... and if you're really astute, you might have noticed several of my posts concerning my new play are tagged "The Rose of Youth." What's that about? Well, I am in the middle of a very exciting theater project, which has been in its planning stages since last fall, and now has finally begun in earnest!

Dynamo Theater Lab is an experiment in presenting vibrant productions of new plays without needing to invest months of time or heaps of money in them. We will perform three shows, one the play I wrote for my senior thesis, The Rose of Youth. We are a 15-member ensemble that does everything ourselves: casting, acting, designing, directing... whatever we need to do to get these plays on their feet!

I'm one of the "original" Dynamo members, the four senior drama majors who laid the groundwork for this last fall. The idea originated with my friend Rachel, who then got the rest of us on board. What's nice is that we all approach theater from a different perspective--Thane is an actor, Rachel is a producer/director, Molly is a designer, and I'm a playwright--so we complemented each other well. We also sought variety in our three shows:
  • Bastard Nation is a fast-paced satire about America, immigration, Wal-Mart, Christianity, and mad cow disease, by Hudson Valley playwright John Christian Plummer. (When the news came out on Monday about the ground beef recall and the fears of mad cow disease, this play suddenly felt prophetic!)
  • There Was No Time Before the War takes place in a dystopian factory--and what's really cool is that the scenes can be performed in any order you like. It's by Jason Platt, who graduated Vassar in 2006.
  • The Rose of Youth (my play) is a backstage drama with a huge cast, about Hallie Flanagan's production of Antony and Cleopatra in 1934.
The schedule of Dynamo is such that we just performed two shows of Bastard Nation yesterday and will begin rehearsals for There Was No Time Before the War tomorrow, and meanwhile, I'm putting the final revisions on The Rose of Youth so we can begin rehearsing it a week from tomorrow! So you'll understand if my blogging continues to be sparse over the following weeks.

Interested in learning more? You can get tickets to Dynamo, read about us in Vassar's student newspaper, and become a fan of us on Facebook!

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