Tuesday, October 09, 2012

PLASTIC THINGS Plays the Philly Fringe

In September 2012, my all-ages play, Of Plastic Things and Butterfly Wings, ran for seven performances as part of the Philly Fringe Festival, and I couldn't be happier with the experience.

The Oldest Sea Turtle That Ever Lived (Josh Totora), Reginald the Blue Crab (Kevin Chick), and Sam the Plastic Water Bottle (Leslie Nevon Holden).  Photo by Charlotte Jacobson.

Playing before live audiences from September 12 - 16 at the Off-Broad Street Theatre (in the Center City/Rittenhouse area), the play was wonderfully produced by Little Fish Theatre, who also commissioned the play in partnership with Fernbrook Farms Education Center.

I was thrilled by the creative team's imagination, and in their skill and generosity in expressing their highly creative ideas.  Making use of puppets, multiple expressions of size and scale, original live music (played largely on found instruments and on recyclable objects), and audience participation, I found this production to be delightful, surprising, theatrical, purposeful, and really touching-- all things that I hope for with every live performance.

As my first experience creating work for young audiences, I particularly enjoyed the performances which had the most young audience members present.  I had a memorable experience talking with one such audience member after the show, who told me all about everything she saw-- a crab, a pink parrot, a turtle, and a whale-shark (the whale-shark was a surprise to me, which I loved).

I also experienced a wonderful moment when a couple different parents told me that this was the first time their child had seen a play.  Now THAT is awesome.

I also loved seeing several Drexel students in the audience, many of whom helped created this work earlier this year through our exploration in the Winter Studio.

Sam's Father (Kevin Chick) and Sam's Mother (Maryruth Stine) caught in The Gyres.  Photo by Charlotte Jacobson
In general, I am very encouraged to the response to this play-- from its beginning creation in February and March of this year, and from this audiences of the Fringe performances.  I look forward to the play's long life, continuing next with this production's touring performance in late November (to Moorestown Friends School in New Jersey), and with another production run to be created by the fine folks of Space 55 in Phoenix, Arizona, in December.

Big continued thank yous to the Little Fish team for all their excellent work, for believing in me from the beginning, and for creating such a wonderful production that was also completely enjoyable to work on (this team embraced every impossible challenge and, in doing so, made the world way bigger).  Thank yous to Fernbrook Farms.  Thank yous to Drexel University and the Dragons of the Winter Studio.  Thank you, Cara Blouin.  Thank yous to the fine folks of the Off-Broad Street Theatre.  Thank you to Beth Cain, for helping us get the word out about this play.  Thank you to Green Philly Blog for covering the performance.  Thank you to Charlotte Jacobson for the photos.  And big thank yous to all the folks who came out to experience the play.

Much love,