True confession time.
For a brief spell this Summer – and not so long ago – I thought long and hard about NOT bringing ‘The Lost World’ to life. Pulling it all together from the ground up – in the purest independent spirit possible – felt equal parts liberating AND terrifying!!! Sure, I’ve got the hard part done. I have a script. I have a stage. But – I also have a lot of hard work ahead of me.
Fortunately, I have some talented local friends who have offered to pitch in and lend a hand. For starters, I drafted my friend Gina – who I’ve acted with a few times on stage – and have had the great pleasure very recently seeing her bring an ambitious youth production to vibrant life in a very short time. This past winter, in 6 short weeks, she staged a ‘Snow Queen‘ musical that was soulful and haunting. Amazing, really. Knowing my play has a handful of flashbacks that call for teen versions of the principals, I thought Gina would not only make a great creative collaborator BUT ALSO an expert ‘teen wrangler’. 🙂
That momentary bout of indifference hit me while on vacation. I had so many things I wanted to get done in preparation for play auditions – (scheduled for August 12th) and yet I found as I crested Week 2 of that 14 day sabbatical, that I hadn’t done a damned thing – and I had no desire to get cracking anytime soon. I took that as an ill omen.
Then a curious thing happened. I returned to work last week and within moments found myself tasked with a mini-Monday morning crisis. While most people would bristle at getting whacked in the face with a lot of hard work after checking your brain at the door two weeks prior, I found it was exactly what I needed. Instead of sitting around all Monday, clock-watching and pining for a beach and brewski, I had no other option but to dive into the deep end. And when I emerged on the other side of that day, the fire completely put out, I found another ignited within.
More than ever – I wanted to find The Lost World.
I think work did the trick.
I got into theater back in 2008 as a little change of pace from the nine-to-five. I like to use the metaphor that when you spend every day, seeing the same old pitches, sometimes you need someone to toss you the curveball to bust you out of that comfort zone. That’s what happened to me back in 2008 when I got a casual offer to join the cast of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest and ever since then – every single time I audition for a play – I find the next 2 months and change fly by as the creative side of my brain gets re-engaged and for a few hours each week, I get to live another life and create.
Getting back to work last monday reminded me EXACTLY why I need The Lost World.
I wrote this play about a year-and-a-half-ago; after The Monkeybar Mafia was officially slated on the Gateway Players’ 2012 docket but had not yet gone into production. It was a lightning bolt moment – an idea that hit my head almost fully formed – and I spent a few weeks after work, chiseling it out of the bedrock (that’s a euphemism for my brain). The second I finished it – I felt such a charge – and wished we could leap frog Monkeybar and get right into this one.
As I sit here now, I’m happy with the order in which things fell. Monkeybar was well received last Fall and also taught me a few things that allowed me to rewrite certain passages in The Lost World in a bid to tighten the ship. Also, we couldn’t have one play without the other – and while the two plays are wildly different at parts – they are kissing cousins, thematically. And for those of you who saw Monkeybar – or read the script – there are little Easter Eggs hidden within that build little bridges between them.
So, in a couple weeks – the production gets going. Suffice it to say, where I sit now…
Can. Not. Wait!!
To celebrate, I’ve whipped up a little announcement trailer. This is what happens when you give me a little free time and a Macbook.