Tag Archives: actors

End Results…

Sometimes, things fall through the cracks.  Sometimes the hard journey through the cracks is the best one that can be taken as an artist. Enduring the pull and stretch can be just what is needed to help create a fresh perspective or an authentic moment that can take art to the next level.

 …the race is not to the swift nor the battle to the strong, neither is bread to the wise nor riches to men of intelligence and understanding nor favor to men of skill; but time and chance happen to them all. [Ecclesiastes 9:11]

Time and chance happens to us all — an equalizer of sorts.   Knowing that, it is a little easier to decide that no matter what we go after, we have the right to expect the end result to take us some place intriguing – some place that will allow us to grow.   We must remember that how we view our world has a lot to do with how we manage in our world.  One can be so wrapped up in the circumstances that the result can be overshadowed.  But end results are like mistakes, everyone makes them; it is not if you will make a mistake but when you make a mistake, it’s how you recover that matters most.

So, the best results can come after the worst experiences as lack luster ones can come after the greatest fanfare.  However they come, one must be aware and celebrate them.  Or, you’ll miss the fact that after days on edge trying to cast your play for a reading, you have the best talkback of your life.  Does the struggle overshadow the win?  It shouldn’t.  Does the win overshadow the struggle?  It should.

I just had a  reading at a festival that was a challenge getting everything in place.  However, the last minute casting got me actors and non actors that really felt my play and discussed it up to an hour after the reading.  And they went deep — both actors and audience members.

I came away feeling that I had conquered the world…  The end result made it all worth it.  I think had there not been a challenge, in this instance, my end result would have been less spectacular…and less exactly what I needed to for my piece.

Actor Love


The photo in my profile was taken by the great actress, Ann Hu, during a rehearsal of my play, The Edwin Forrest Project, for a stage reading at the Blank Theatre in Hollywood. The photo was taken when the actors were on break and I was jotting down ideas for a post-reading rewrite. I love how the pen glows like a lightning bolt. 

I still write a lot of things longhand, and I’m wondering if anyone else does too. My preference is yellow legal pads and cheap ballpoint pens (blue and black). I can write on a computer screen, but I prefer the pen. It’s mightier than the sword. A computer is just mighty. 

One of my happiest places to be is in a rehearsal room. I don’t like to direct because that involves talking, and there are directors who are better than I could ever be. 

So what does the playwright do in a rehearsal room? I am actively watching. I have my eyes on the twelve thousand details that the play sits on. If we were on the Enterprise, the director would be Kirk, and I would be Spock—only we can’t shoot phasers or teleport. Darnit! 

I love watching actors work. I have great respect for actors. It’s a strange line of work. First there is the mass entertainment perception of actors on red carpets and wearing fashion. Imagine being the top doctor or top construction worker and being under that much scrutiny. Second, there’s all the rejection. Sure, as a writer, I know rejection (oh man, do I know it), but it’s my plays. It’s not my physical self. 

But in rehearsal, man, that’s where actors really work. They’re constantly making adjustments—trying to find the character and the performance. And actors are smart. They can take an abstraction, a thought, an idea, and turn it into something physical. I can barely put thoughts on paper sometimes, but actors gotta send ideas through themselves and out to the audience. 

Every actor works differently. Some come in and thrive on lots and lots of direction. Some come in, step on the stage, and they’re in the play. They’re just present in the stage reality. It takes a lot of work to seem like you’re not acting. 

To every actor I’ve ever worked with. You are never forgotten, and I hope you all make tons of money. You have great playwright love from me.