Life has been moving at a fast pace and I’ve been slower to update on my personal website. Doors are opening and opportunities are jumping from every direction, which is exciting but also a little scary. The amount of resistance I’ve felt to putting things on pause for a single morning to think and reflect is eye opening in and of itself.
In contrast, my friend and colleague Paulette Gindi just launched her website www.ChewOnMe.com where she postulates proudly in her first post “So come back soon for more rambles, because there's zero filter here. AND I DON'T CARE IF THERE ARE TYPOOS.” Such a brazen attitude is one I need to embrace. Here it goes!
The dynamic of working with such large a team is thrilling. Moreover, the leadership of our production headed by Christopher Erlendson, Kelly Catlin, and myself allowed this large team to operate seamlessly. The results are clear: the one week run of Magic the Play was completely sold out!
After the run, Chris, Kelly, and I headed back to the storyboard to revise the show and bring it to the next level, creatively speaking. Equipped with valuable feedback from our audience as well as the experience of mounting the production, our creative efforts grow more focused and energetic. This process will continue until August where we have set a strict deadline for completion.
Chris, Kelly, and I are also working on the business side of things to bring Magic the Play Off-Broadway! Initial business design and legal stages have begun.
Soon we’ll have formed an LLC and be able recruit co-producers and investors. This “business” side of show-business is really exciting because its sets the platform for the creative team to do their work. If this sounds like something you’d want to be a part of, reach out to me through social media and let’s talk!
My career took an exciting step forward after Magic. Cody Lassen, a Broadway producer best known for the revival of Spring Awakening, offered me to work with him on his latest project, Some Lovers, a new musical by Burt Bacharach and Steven Sater. I gladly accepted the opportunity. For more information about this musical, see my Theatre page.
Cycling back to my previous associateship at the National Yiddish Theater Folksbiene, my progressive work with their social media has resulted in the commencement of a livestream video campaign. The first livestream video garnered over 600 views within 24 hours, a remarkable figure! I’m glad to have made an impact there.
My work on Chris Patterson’s new play Between the Lines is coming along smoothly as well. I’m producing a (sold out) developmental staged reading of the play in collaboration with director Phillip Williams. The play addresses drugs, sex, and alcohol in nightlife culture and approaches the topic of differentiating between fun, excessiveness, and dependency. My short term goal is to develop the play in a showcase presentation within the next year, then perhaps partner with not-for-profit institutional theaters on a larger presentation.
I will add, the mental health aspects of Between the Lines are of significant importance to me in my view of societal issues. Drug and alcohol dependency are amongst the most common mental health issue in the United States. Its own set physical and mental health deteriorating factors as well as its contributory relationship to anxiety, depression, and suicide risk make it a burdensome issue to the 20 million Americans that struggle with addiction.
Scientists and advocates in the world of mental health have shown interest to this play. Leading expert Dr. John F. Kelly from Harvard University’s Center for Addiction talked with me at length about entertainment’s ability to elucidate the progression of dependency in nightlife culture. I am certain once Between the Lines takes off, other scientists, mental health professionals, and advocates will participate in similar progressive conversations about drugs, sex, and alcohol.
On top of these projects, I’ve volunteering with the Yeshiva College Dramatics Society (YCDS) on their upcoming play, Harvey – Mary Chases’ unusual comedy which was the recipient of the 1945 Pulitzer Prize for Drama. As usual, the student ran theater at Yeshiva University continues to produce impressively high quality of content signifying the feasibility of balancing creative expression with the Orthodox Jewish experience. Such an endeavor has been making a splash in the Orthodox Jewish world. This article sums it up pretty nicely: A Yeshiva University Comedy During the Omer? The Value of the Arts in Orthodoxy! You can find more information about the show in events above.
Lastly, the Cold Reading Series at the Artist Co-Op which I host on the first Tuesday of every month continues to grow and impact more people. The series is an intimate gathering centered on the common language of creative expression. I strongly support kicking back with creatives in a positive environment in overcoming the toughness of NYC and maintaining a positive outlook. I welcome you to attend – more information is in events above.
There you have it! Thanks for keeping up with my pursuits in this farkakteh and batampte business!