17 May 2007

Read Me?

Before you ask: My butt feels okay today, inasmuch as a butt can that is apparently seriously damaged.

Some have expressed confusion at my schedule, of late and upcoming. I can't begin to imagine why. I suppose it could have something to do with the way in which I myself never actually know what I'll be doing much in advance of a week beforehand. Such is the life of the unrepresented, slightly-whorish-about-work actor. (Come on. Everyone's a little whorish about the stuff they love.) So I thought I would give an update on what I think is happening for me this summer. What I think is happening, mind you. You don't get to hold me to this, because I don't get to hold anybody to anything they promise me regarding work and travel. Them's the breaks.

Some of the more niggling questions of late:

By-Stander of Innocence: Hey Jeff, how come you aren't in Italy right now?
VERY good question, helpful By-Stander. I myself am often amazed by life's little surprises. It turned out that we did not achieve our enrollment quota for In Bocca al Lupo, and thus it seemed we weren't able to go. Then David Zarko, artistic director of The Northeast Theatre, asked us if we could apply for grants and pay part of our airfare as actors. To the first we said yes, the second, no. We did not get the grants, and most of we lot are pretty shallow-of-pocket. Suddenly David pipes in again, saying, "Well, what the hell! I want to go with youse guys, and--being that I am gradually becoming the real estate baron of Upper Left-Hand Scranton--if we make it a two-week trip I can afford to take you." So we were on again, for the last two weeks in May. But then one of us had show conflicts with that time, and David thought we could get better prices later, so now we are positively, definitively going to be there the last two weeks of June. Maybe.

B-SoI: Soooooo . . . how comes you hain't been writing about teaching with Wingspan Arts all month, then?
Well, when I left off teaching with Wingspan at the start of May, it was with the idea that I had two weeks to find a new apartment before going to Italy, and very little money to accomplish this. Now I have a little more money and Italy is put off, but I am still, technically, apartmentless. So it's best for both me and the youth of America that I NOT be compelled to invoke any disciplinary action upon them.

BSoI: Enough said. Do you miss it?
Badly. I miss the kids, and Alex. Hopefully the timing will work out that I can see their final presentation before really, truly (maybe) leaving for Italy.

BSI: And what of The Torture Project and Joint Stock Theatre Alliance? Are they still going strong? Are you still strongly going along with them, or have you been left at the side of Collaboration Road with nothing but a few creative notions wrapped in a handkerchief tied to the end of a stick?
Er . . . . That's very poetic, By-Stander. Are YOU by any chance involved with a collaborative theatre project?

BSI: Who isn't?
Indeed. Well, refer to a previous entry of mine (5/3/07) and you will see that the above project has miraculously transformed itself unto a show entitled As Far As We Know, created by a theatre company now monikered as UnCommon Cause. Same bat-people, same bat-project, different bat-names. And yes, as far as I know, I'll still appear on stage. (Speaking of which: Todd. I need those work-out tips NOW.) In fact, As Far As We Know shall grace one of the stages of the NYC Fringe in August. So we're gearing up to hustle and bustle to create the most fully realized version of the show to date. With a script, and everything. Hopefully we'll maintain some of the homey effects, like string lights. String lights make everything pretty. Currently, along with several writer meetings prior, we're planning to escape to New Hampshire once again at the end of July to get some focused development done.

BI: Wait, wait. At the end of July? Won't that conflict with projects you've mentioned previously? The Exiled, and something with Friend Melissa's company, Kinesis Project Dance Theatre?
Yes and no, happily and sadly. The Exiled (which I keep thinking of as Teh Exiled; consider it, Nat...?) was not accepted into the Fringe, obviously because the Fringe only accepts fluffy, unresearched and underdeveloped material. Wait. No. Um . . . I guess . . . LOOK! A SEAGULL! {sound of hurried footsteps, fading into the distance} But never fear: Friend Nat fully intends to mount the show all the same (fan as he is of mounting things), possibly at the end of August, when all of this Fringe-related madness has blown over. Kinesis, however, I had to bow out of, owing to conflicts at both ends of the project's development. This makes me very sad, as it is hardly the first time I've had to abandon both Friends Melissa and Patrick--creatively speaking--and their faith in me probably can't take much more. That's not to their discredit AT ALL. Quite the contrary. I just basically owe them a percentage of all the cash I make from other shows I end up doing during the time we had planned to work together. Guys, your checks for 72 cents are in the mail.

B: Okay. I'm starting to get the picture here. So you'll be around more than usual this summer?
Yes (if by "more than usual" you mean, "at all"), and I have aspirations of many open acrobalance sessions in Central Park as a result. I will, of course, keep my hungry public updated on the progress of that as it develops.

B: Great! So the rest of the summer, you'll be busy, but around--
Ah, not quite. There is also a week at the start of July--from the 2nd to the 6th, to be precise--when I will be in Pennsylvania teaching children ages six to sixteen about the glories of physical theatre and acrobalance.

b: I see. BUT, apart from that, your summer will be spent in and around the Big Apple, and of course in the fall there's so much going on here you'll need to stay local--
Er. Um.

b: . . . What?
I, uh. Starting August 27th I'll be out of town for over two months collaborating on the newest Zuppa del Giorno show, Prohibitive Standards.

: . . .

Sorry. Sorry. It's like this: See, I work really hard at my craft. The only thing that limits me in this is the opportunity to do so in any context that supports the rest of my life, which opportunity is unpredictable in occasion and duration. So when I get to do it, and in a context in which I really, personally care about the work itself . . . well, it's not to be missed, no matter how much it may rattle the equilibrium of my life at large. Hence the mad schedule, and feeling all warm and fuzzy inside the more theatrical obligations I have to run around to. It doesn't make sense. It does, however, make me happy.

By-Stander of Now Somewhat Less Innocence: But how's your butt feeling?

Quiet, you.