Tag Archives: Talkback

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.

White Fluffies and Butterflies…

Butterfly on weed by marilyn958

When you go to script readings, do you comment?  And when and if you comment, do you tell the truth or do you give white fluffies and smile for the imaginary camera?  Are you concerned that the director may find out who you are and put you on a list? 

On the flip side, when it’s your turn to receive comments for a script that you have written, do you want white fluffies or the truth?  How difficult or easy is it for you to see through the fog of fluff?  Does your inner radar sound off?  Do you, as storyteller, know the story you are trying to tell?  Do comments assist or hinder you in your process?

I personally hate white fluffies.  I tend not to give them.  Okay, I don’t give them.  I don’t want anyone giving them to me either; just tell me straight out.  The thing about comments is that it is ultimately up to the writer whether or not they want to incorporate them or not anyway.  But, it’s a lot easier to wade through the information if there are no fluff balls crowding constructive comments.  I think that as fellow artists, if we give a comment it should be an honest one.

I went to see a new play where the playwright participated in a talkback after the production .  The audience did not give white fluffies; they gave something worse, convoluted and somewhat idiotic rants and rails that could never help the playwright.  I hope the playwright was able to let it roll off his back like water on an oiled surface.  So brave, he was, to sit there and take questions, so vulnerable; unsure of the work maybe because it materialized in a radical new way this time, unsure, like a new playwright just trying out craft.  I could feel his butterflies in the room fluttering about…  It made me wonder if the they ever go away – the butterflies — when we send the children out into the world to play… 

Careful, watch out for the fluffies…

*Art by Marilyn MacCrakin, a California playwright and photographer. http://marilyn958.deviantart.com/