It has been quite a while since blog readers have had any new posts from me. But I had a good reason: my play Becoming Calvin had its world premiere this past month in Washington, D.C. It went quite well, and now of course, I am more determined than ever to put it on a larger stage, i.e. get it out to more professional theatre companies or colleges/universities that can produce it. For another opinion about the production, you can read this blog posted by Ruth Everhart (a terrific writer herself!).
|The cast of Becoming Calvin with Jonathan Lee Taylor as Calvin|
|graphic by Alexandra Pigott|
Even more instructive, as my "army" of volunteers dwindled down to two dedicated souls, was how two stalwart, detail-oriented, organized people did the job of at least a dozen less self-directed folks. I was also blessed with paid talent who pitched in wherever needed, out of devotion to the project, and/or the satisfaction of doing a job well. Turns out that as a rookie "job creator" I made some very smart hiring decisions! I went with gut instincts, hiring people who not only excel as actors, stage manager, and designers, but who truly are team players. No over-sized egos (a good thing, because the dressing room was tiny!) And I will always look for that from now on: because creating a universe out of nothing, which is what we do in the theatre, has to be a collaboration. I liked being the boss, yes, and I was ready to accept responsibility for anything that went awry (nothing major did, though). For six weeks this summer I did virtually nothing but oversee every aspect of this play. But it was worth it -- because the people I worked with were fabulous.
Now I return to the solitary writer's role as I embark on the sequel, Being Calvin. I will miss the interaction with such gifted people. But as I stare at so many blank pages, I know now that there will likely be another happy ending, when this play is staged. And even if my role is reduced -- maybe I will only be the playwright -- I will be part of something greater than the sum of its parts. I believe that is what drives artists, always. And why we keep creating, one note, one brushstroke, one word at a time.