Saturday, September 27, 2008

I am Moving to ArtsEdge

Dear Friends,

On October 1st, I will be moving.

I will leave my familiar digs of South Philly/Beck Street, to head to West Philadelphia. I am moving because I was recently selected as the FIRST-ever Resident Writer for a project called ArtsEdge, a new program created by the Kelly Writers House and the University of Pennsylvania.

The program is designed with a couple major aims in mind: to nurture cross-disciplinary art collaborations and to build bridges between UPenn and the artistic community of Philadelphia at-large. To do this, they're partially-subsidizing an apartment in West Philly, which will house myself and a visual artist, encouraging her and I to create at least one on-going project together that can be shared with the community.

The visual artist (her name is Adrienne Gale and her work is really impressive) and I will also receive dedicated studio space (for free) with several other artists as part of the 40th Street Artists project. The residency lasts until the end of August, 2009.

In conjunction with this, starting in the spring, I will be teaching a class in the Creative Writing department of The University of Pennsylvania. Which means, I'll be teaching at an IVY LEAGUE school. Holy cow!!!

All of this is very exciting to me and this opportunity should continue to push me towards becoming a better artist and a better human. Additionally, West Philly is my favorite part of the city (because its creativity, activity, and beauty makes it feel like Austin to me) and I will be much happier living there.

Big thank yous to the awesome people at Kelly Writers House (Jessica Lowenthal and Erin Gautsche), The Rotunda (Gina Renzi) and the Creative Writing Program at UPenn (Greg Djanikian) for making this possible. Huge thank yous as well to Philadelphia artist Rebecca Ennen for sending me ArtsEdge's original call for artists.

My new address (home also of my new writing studio), come and visit me there!!!

4007 Chestnut St
Philadelphia PA 19104

rock on,


Tuesday, September 23, 2008

LULLABY in Video Documentary

The good folks of Audacity Theatre Lab have posted a wonderful mini-documentary about their production of The Most Beautiful Lullaby You've Ever Heard in May 2008 in Dallas, Texas. The documentary features pieces of the performance, rehearsal, interviews, etc. and gives a taste of what ATL's production was like, and who these lovely people are.

You can view the documentary by clicking here.

Thank you to Brad McEntire and company for their continued good work on that production.

Rock on,


Tuesday, September 09, 2008

SHOVEL Opens in the Philly Fringe

Just as Valentine's Day closed, my short play, Shovel, opens in the Philly Fringe as part of 4 x 4, a staging of four short new plays in four different and environmental 4-foot by 4-foot spaces in Plays and Players Theater.

The production opened on Sunday, September 7th and runs through Saturday, September 13th.

I attended the production Sunday evening and enjoyed traveling through the multiple environments of Plays and Players and seeing the numerous creative uses of theatrical space. I appreciate this production's innovation, and I thank collaborators Andrew J. Merkel (director) and Cherie A. Roberts (performing the role of "Elida") for their hard work.

For additional information about the show, you can visit HERE.

For a direct link to tickets and information via the Philly Fringe Festival website, click HERE.

Rock on,


Friday, September 05, 2008

VALENTINE'S DAY Opens in the Philly Fringe

As part of the project, Mittens Descending and Other Tales, my short one-act play, Valentine's Day, opens on Friday, September 5th and runs for four performances this weekend. Heck yeah.

I've had a good time working with The Burn Ward Theater Company as they've proven to be a talented, resourceful, creative, lovely group of young theater artists. I am happy to be getting to know them and their work.

I've also enjoyed my continued collaboration with director Andrew J. Merkel and thank actress Molly Casey for her brave work in the role of the suicidal, rollerskating, pizza-making, hula-hooping character, "Opal".

I always welcome a new process, as each time I work on my plays I discover something new about them and find ways to make them stronger and braver. This process has been no different, and I thank Andy, Molly, (production designer) Cherie A. Roberts, and The Burn Ward, for continuing to teach me about the play, for helping me find the play's guts, and for making clear where the stronger choices were inside of the work.

I look forward to the performances and hope to continue a friendship with everyone involved.

Details about the production below:


Mittens Descending and Other Tales
Friday, September 5th, 7:00 pm and 10:00 pm
Saturday, September 6th, 7:00 pm and 10:00 pm

Plays and Players Theater
1714 Delancey St
Philadelphia PA


Mittens Descending by Eamon R. McIvor
A tale of bipolar rocker Lenny. Lenny has just been dumped by his goth chic girlfriend, Rebecca. He's hell-bent on getting her back, so he enlists the help of his childhood imaginary friend, a militaristic cat named Mittens. It's "Harvey" meets "Hot Topic" in this demented tale about the redeeming power of creepy love.

Big Red Button by Eamon R. McIvor
A short play about what really happens if you press the infamous big red button.

Valentine’s Day by Greg Romero
Opal decides every Valentine's Day if she's going to kill herself. This year, she makes lists, she makes pizzas, she rollerskates, and she's afraid of hula-hoops.

To purchase tickets or for more information, click HERE


Rock on,


Thursday, September 04, 2008

I'm a Saint Joseph's University Hawk

Wednesday, September 3rd was my first day teaching at Saint Joseph's University. Home of the "Hawks", St. Joe's is a wonderful, liberal-arts based, Jesuit-founded/influenced university. I am teaching two courses, "Introduction to Theater Arts" and "American Theater". My students are mostly new to theater, whose majors range from Fine and Performing Arts (there is no "theater" major at SJU) to Health, to Management, to Accounting, to Marketing, to Psychology, to Elementary Education. This means that my course "Introduction to Theater" truly lives up to its name. I look forward to bringing theater to these students, and see it as an opportunity to help them find their creative core, as well as continue my work bringing theater into more cultural conversations in this country.

I'm one of only three faculty members (the others are an Associate Professor and a Technical Director) on the Theater Arts department, and look forward to helping this program grow into an even more active, more rigorous place of learning.

I am also happy that my teaching opportunities continue to grow, and that they continue to provide me with my own opportunities for learning and growth.

Rock on,