Saturday, May 7, 2022

Process LXV

and you and you and you ... and you were there! 
Monday was the second first reading (first second reading?) of my new script. This time the entire class read the piece via Zoom, and the response was again very positive. More significantly, through their feedback I am now able to articulate what the piece is really about.

It is a mystery, but it is not confusing. There are a couple fakes in there, and some chills. It’s all about the second act; the first is a deep dive into the subconscious, the second carries the weight of having actual significance in the real world.

There was again the comparison to Caryl Churchill’s Top Girls, but I was again reminded of the influence of Cloud 9, in regards to the significance of double casting. The Wizard of Oz was also mentioned, and how the farmhands Hickory, Hunk and Zeke come to represent Dorothy’s friends.

The white, male protagonist has a secret, which is common to us, that we harbor fears of dominance and abuse and that we have the potential to become, or that we have already become, that thing we fear the most. How we deal with that struggle is the central conflict in the play.

The question is one of resolution, and there were many helpful suggestions as to how I might alter the action but there wasn’t one of them I hadn’t already considered and found wanting. Churchill includes callbacks in Cloud 9, where characters from the first act intrude late into the second, as if to remind us of things we haven’t actually forgotten yet.

The dream is the dream, and readers believe it is a realistic dream. Reality is reality, and must remain reality. I don’t want anyone to leave asking about the bunny.

Also this week, I have been editing the Falling monologue for the class on illness narratives, and recording myself reading them in various locations, to suggest the passage of time. I may need to revise the text further before submitting the written piece, but just reading them aloud has provided guidance to judicious cutting.

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