Sunday, March 6, 2022

The Witches (performance)

In the cemetery.
The first week of Test Flight has closed. After over two years, my play The Witches has been seen by an audience, three nights of well-attended performances at Cleveland Public Theatre. 

I sat in the back with a clipboard taking notes, and also talking to people after. If you saw it and have any feedback, I would be grateful to receive it.

One thing I liked hearing about were the layers, the many story layers in the piece. I have been sweating the details that I could not see nor comprehend how it might all come together to be perceived by others.
“The interwoven threads of whose stories we believe, how complicit women may be in exploiting/blaming other women, and mixing stories of the distant past with up-to-the-moment storytelling technologies – pretty heady stuff which also made me chuckle repeatedly.” - fellow playwright
Much work on the script during the rehearsal process was in answering the question "why." Why does Moxie stay when she has been treated so poorly? Why does Rachael surrender her book when she wishes to remain anonymous?

Like Bradbury itself, these shirts are fictional.
Friday night, my son wanted to know why the women in 1692 turned against each other. Or, if not why, thn how -- under what circumstances. I thought that was clear. Maybe even to the actors it was clear. To the audience, perhaps it was not, and I can see how that might be the case. The fact that it was important to him means it is important to me.

He also offered that the rambling Baby Boomer monologue was on point. He didn't understand all of it, but it was definitely the kind of thing he thought someone that age might go on about. Saturday evening we had an older audience, and Marie's speech even got a hand.

Some nights they were all over the TikTok jokes, on others they hooted at all that great not-for-profit humor. I appeal to all ages.

The piece has rough edges, and I have pages of notes and these generous, critical responses which will help me continue to shape the script. Thankfully, it was a strong production, and people were taken by the characters and the story. I hope to revisit Bradbury soon.

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