Last night I participated in a developmental reading of Steve Deighan's work-in-progress, The Last Stand, which was held at his gorgeous apartment on the Upper West Side. I won't say too much about the play itself here, as it's none of my business to go about spilling other writer's ideas. I mean, steal all of mine you want, but Steve's are off limits. I will say that it's a very funny script that takes some familiar stage tropes and turns them lovingly on their collective ears.
The people of this little reading were great; just great. Daryl Boling directed the night and read stage directions (gleefully intoning them with a '40s radio personality's spin), and my fellow actors for the eve were Hank Davies, Carolyn Gordon (Carolyn, if there's somewhere I can link for you, please let me know), Ryan Michael Jones and Laura Schwenninger (Laura: McFadden: WHAT?! I just spent five minutes of my life Google-searching "Schwenninger"! How do you expect to receive anonymous feedback from casting directors like this?). It was largely a reunion. I have worked with Steve, Daryl and Laura on several occasions, and Hank on one. Mike was in Daryl's admirable production of All the Rage, with Steve and Laura, and I believe Carolyn had worked with folks too, though I never got the skinny on that. In other words, all who weren't already friends made strides toward it through the course of the work and discussion.
It was only a few hours, but it was a few hours I very much needed. Just a little contact with theatre work, when I feel somehow deprived of it, can go a long way, and even longer when it's with a group that I enjoy and trust. It was a late night for yours truly. (As an interesting [to me] side note, I don't think I've ever had so much attention paid to my Facebook status as when I wrote this morning that I was too tired for push-ups.) I didn't crawl into bed until midnight, and that's at least two hours past any usefulness from this little bear.
Sometimes, though, more than sleep, one needs the company of a few friends and a play.