Closing Weekend for 12 Ophelias!!!!

only 2 more chances people..... get with the program!

An "extraordinary paradigm shift that should not be missed!"
-Venus Zarris, Chicago Stage Review

"fiercely sexual and expressionistic" --"Far more surreal and twisted than Tom Stoppard's "Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead"
-Hedy Weiss, Chicago Sun-Times

"A visual and sonic feast!" --"12 Ophelias provides moment after unique moment of unique observation and delight"
-Brian Krist, Chicago Free Press

"Verbally kaledidoscopic"
-Catey Sullivan, Chicago Magazine
"an erotic dreamscape"
-Kerry Reid, Chicago Reader


The answer

“The whole answer is there on the canvas.”
- Edward Hopper


A gentleman and a scholar

So I'm doing this show, it kind of kicks ass (plug, plug: http://www.trapdoortheatre.com/). We've been getting great reviews, great turnout and GREAT audience response.

Last night, after opening the house for patrons to sit, I noticed a guy come in to pick up his tickets.


It was Tracy Letts. If you don't know who he is...seriously, google the dude for crying out loud. The man has pretty much taken Chicago by storm, then packed it up, brought it to Broadway, took NY by storm, won a pulitzer... you know....slow couple of years for him.

Now, please understand.... I wasn't freaked out to meet him, I was freaked out that I would call the show terribly. It's kind of the same feeling back when Brian Dennehy & Eric Bogosian came to see their pal Stacy Keach in King Lear at The Goodman. Sure, I wasn't SM back then, but I was positive something awful was going to happen that day. It didn't, thank god....

So back to last night. I was freaked the whole show - I don't think I've ever been as in tune to listening for cue lines, etc. Holy crap. Well - it went smooth, the show went VERY well - great night for the performers! When the show was over, Tracy went around to all the performers, introduced himself and told each person how much he enjoed the show. What a guy. I got to shake his hand as well.

I was thinking about it today, and it reminded me that he posted a hilarious blog post on the Steppenwolf blog awhile back all about "audience ettiquette' The shit is funny...and sadly, very true.
Take a read if you've never had the chance:  http://blog.steppenwolf.org/2007/04/30/1-of-you/


Can't tell which picture is better

"You gotta have a goal, have ya gotta goal?"

New weight loss goal explained herein.

Usually when I have figured little weight loss goals so far, I take the avergae weight loss I have had so far per week, and multiply that by either the DATE I want to shoot for or the weight I want to shoot for.

Now, my next goal is 2/6/10, which is my 35th birthday.
It would be freaking AWESOME if I was under 200 lbs by then. However, if I do the math: 15 weeks till my birthday multiplied by 1.5 pounds per week average = 22.5 pounds.... and that only gets me to 211.3. In order to hit the "under 200" goal in 15 weeks I'd have to average 2.26 pounds per week, and that amount just isn't healthy.

So, my goal is at minimum to hit that 211.3 by 2/6/10. If I can over reach that goal just a little, and maybe stretch to 209 or 205, that'd be awesome. I don't discount the aggressive goal of 199, though...I just don't honostly think I can make it there and still stay healthy (I'll hit that goal week halfway through the run of Hopper - I'm sure there's bound to be some missteps during tech, not to mention the ubiquitous opening night beer and wine, etc.).

So we're shooting for the middle. Literally.


Busy day

....but just wanted to be clear how much I love this picture! :-)

Daniel Driscoll & Jennifer Jacobs (Driscoll)
October 2, 2009


"To Respect the Code"....

"What's the code?"
"Unit, Corp, God, Country"
"Excuse me?"

So there was a "Storefront Theatre" summit held about a week ago. I wasn't there, but a few bloggers were, and so far the info I've heard has been a little mixed (at best). I withold judgement on the actual substance of the meeting, as I was not present.
However, during the meeting, they broke up into smaller brainstorming groups, and one of the topics that was floated in a group was the idea of a "Code of Ethics". At first, I couldn't explain why, but my back bristled up at the mere thought of a code. It has taken me a few days to formulate a "why" for the back bristling, but here is what I posted in the comments of RebbecaZ's blog:

"Here's how I feel about the code...

In the same time period that we are challenging each other to do more "dangerous" theatre, to take risks and do things outside the box, we're also considering putting together a list of rules and regulations as well?
It all seems counter-productive to creating great art.
Let me be clear, though. I'm not suggesting that creating dangerous theatre includes un-ethical things (actors being late or dropping out, designers not completing work, etc etc), I'm saying that the whole NOTION of a code of any kind, no matter how harmless it may seem in the germination stage, will feel like a stranglehold on the art, IMHO.
I think if a certain idea comes out of the summit, for example 3 theatres teaming up for a festival, and those theatres want to put to paper some regulations for each other for that PROJECT, then have at it.
One of the things I love about Chicago theatre is that we don't fall into a pigeon-holed category. There is a little bit of sum'thin for everyone. I think the idea of all of us agreeing to a set of rules threatens to homogenize us.
I'm now going to go off and find more ways to create thoughts that include "germination" and "homogenize" in the same paragraph. Perhaps a haiku."

Here, however, is the promised haiku.
The first one I've probably written since I learned about haiku in the 4th grade.

Seed germination

A code of ethics. That sucks.
We homogenize


Spelling errors

At work, we post the daily cafeteria menu on our "intranet", so you can be either excited or forewarned about the chosen cuisine of the day. Much like high school days, fries and pizza gather the crowds, and chop suey day usually has people running across the street to Potbelly for a different option.

This week, the hotel is celebrating it's 20th anniversary (yay!), and as a special treat, we've had free breakfast provided all week, and we've also had special lunches all week as well (salmon, sliced turkey, yesterday was a great risotto).

At the top of today's menu is our special celebratory entree: Roasted Pork Lion

Dude, talk about the new white meat.


Tony has a great post today dicussing the GOOD that can happen in saying NO to a project. This is defintely a topic that should be taught to young artists (actors & techies alike). Don't like the play? Don't like the part you were offered? Too much on your plate?
Release yourself from the stress and simply say "no".

Haven't we ALL taken a project, that either gave us red flags, or we felt uncomfortable about in some way, and it all just bit uss in the ass? Next thing you know, you're staring aty yourself in the mirror, counting your worry lines on your face and saying, "I should have said no". I know I've had those moments.

Lately, I have been able to be much more selective - it's a little easier since I have a well-paying full time day job, and I'm no longer affiliated with any theatre companies. Easier to pick a project when there aren't any on the horizon. :-) I'm enjoying the "work from show-to-show" pace I have going.
(I should scan a page from my planner from back when I was working full time, helping Speaking Ring produce, working part time at Blue Man AND trying to do outside projects. I must have been crazy - and I know my schedule wasn't even NEARLY as bad as it can be for plenty of others)
Right now, stage managing for Trap Door....Next up? Stage Managing "Hopper" for WNEP. Days off in between gigs? 10.  Thats like a year back in the old days... now it seems really short. We'll only be rehearsing 3 days a week, which rocks my world --- and the DCA theatre is pretty darn convenient for me, since it's a 10 minute walk from my job, and when shows are over it's walking distance to the red line.

wait... I got off on a little tangent here... sorry....

Anyway, being selective has really paid off - the last few projects I've worked on have been so rewarding. Metaluna, The Lost Shakespeare Play, 12 Ophelias... There's just nothing LIKE these projects out there, so I'm psyched that I've been a (small) part of some really wonderful art, something that was sometimes missing from those crazy days a few years ago. (Although as a side note, I love how I actually kind of just STATED that I would be stage managing "Hopper" to Don. I never really asked...I just TOLD him I'd be doing it. To which Don didn't bat an eyelash and simply said "Rock 'n Roll")

I completely agree with Tony, though. If someone doesn't take you aside and tell you it's ok to say no, this is something that can take years to be comfortable with. I know it took me a long time to do it.


"The Road"

I can't even tell you how much I'm looking forward to this movie. Yes, it's going to be ridiculously bleak and depressing....bring it on!

There's more info at their IMDB page. It's released on 11/25.

Who's comin' with me?