In the middle of the summer I had the opportunity to work again with one of my favorite young film directors, Zack Morrison, currently completing his MFA in film directing at Columbia University. He was working on a short film called "Captain Cyborg", about the difficulties of middle school bullying and the effects of cyber-bullying in tandem with physical, emotional and psychological bullying that occurs in todays schools and he asked me to come in to play the students' teacher. His whole team was incredibly talented and professional, as were all of the young actors that were hired for this film. To the right you'll see a few stills of me from the film, but be sure to watch the whole thing in my videos page, it's a very creative and powerful short film.
With the warmer weather comes festivals and faire season, which put the Greatest Pirate Story Never Told! and the Roving Blades back on the road. We performed in Albany, Long Island, Connecticut, Buffalo, The Hamptons, Tarrytown, the Columbus Zoo and finished up with a month long Roving Blades residency in Pittsburgh, performing traditional Irish folk music throughout the day while securing lifelong friendships with incredible performers.
I got way behind on update these posts...like, I missed all of 2015. Oh well! I will do a recap/catch up if for nothing else to remind myself what I did last year.
For January, February and March, the team that brought Hamlet to Brooklyn in 2014 got back together to work out a 5 man production of Richard II, directed by Ryan Zachary Ward. The process was an ongoing endeavor to create a playful yet powerful, process driven devised work, using only 5 actors for 25+ characters. In March we spent a week in a cabin on the top of Beech Mountain, North Carolina getting into the text, rehearsing all day and having a great time being away from the city. The several month long work culminated in a performance on a rooftop in Harlem in mid-May, where it was very well received and we had a blast.
No better way to finish out a great year than with my Off-Broadway Debut! I was asked to return to the role of Percy but in a brand new holiday show with the pirates in "The Greatest Pirate Holiday Spectacularrr!!" at the Snapple Theater Center (AKA the Jerry Orbach theater and home of The Fantasticks), as apart of Snapple's Children in the theater program. In this chapter of the pirates' story, they begin to tell their tale from the original show when they are informed it's time for a holiday show and Charles Dickens is summoned to help them, when he discovers that his first page ofA Christmas Carol is blotted with ink and the audience must fill in suggestions to complete the story. The improv songs and scenes are woven seamlessly into a pirate parody of A Christmas Carol and it ends with the pirates rewriting Dickens story while learning the true meaning of Christmas. Between flashy sword fights and silly voices to improv songs equipped with obscure pop culture references and double entendres, it resonated to people of all ages and our 11 show holiday run was a huge success!
Just prior to finishing up the haunt in sleepy hollow, I was invited to participate in Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Baileys clown college of 2014! I was selected to be one of six after The Greatest Show on Earth had held open call auditions in every major city they had toured to that year. I was flown to Chicago and lived with my clown college fellow students for 9 amazing days that included learning everything I never thought I would know about the history of the American circus to the art form of clowning, physical comedy, slapstick, clown makeup, and the amount of incredible work the clowns with Ringling do both in the shows and out in the communities of the cities they are visiting. I forged relationships with some really incredible teachers, performers and colleagues in that amazing week. Although I wasn't quite ready to accept the offer to "run away with the circus" and decided to continue pursuing my acting career here in New York, I have never been exposed to a more caring company and can see myself becoming involved with them again in the near future!
After returning from an amazing two months in Hilsboro Oregon, I will be performing with 60+ amazing, talented and terrifying performers at "Horseman's Hallow" as the infamous character Ichabod Crane from Washington Irving's story The Legend of Sleepy Hallow. The haunted attraction takes place from 7pm to 10pm on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays of October (including Halloween) up until November 1st in Sleepy Hallow, NY on the historic site with buildings dating back to 1640. Such a cool place to be for the Halloween season!
Just a few days after our Performance of Three Months With Pook, I'll be heading across the country to Oregon to join the gnarliest and undisputed greatest improv-musical pirates you'll ever know in The Greatest Pirate Story Never Told! as apart of the Oregon Renaissance Fair just outside of Portland, OR. Rehearsals are going great and I have been learning so much! Beard growing begins now.
After wrapping up my last project in the Gross Mason's collaborative of Backyard Hamlet in Bushwick, I will be performing in the world premier of Three Months with Pook. A memory play with music, Three Months with Pook tells the story of a gay man and lesbian who have a brief, heterosexual, love affair. As the man, Xavier, recalls his experiences, he uses the music of Melanie to bring Pook and his memories to life. This humorous and psychologically profound tale takes the audience on a sad and happy adventure about friendship, love, and abuse.
July 30, 2014 @ 7:30pm at the Dixon Place Lounge, 161a Chrystie Street, Ground Floor, NYC
Presented as part of the Hot! Festival, “the oldest continually running GBLTQ festival in the world.”
The Dixon Place Lounge is open before, during, and after the show. Proceeds directly support Dixon Place’s artists and mission.
The weekend of Performances for our production of Backyard Hamlet in Bushwick was a huge success! Thank you to all who came to support our project and to Christopher and Ryan's hard work and creative energy.