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Flux Sunday, May 31st

Sunday, May 31, 2009 1 comments

What is Flux Sunday?

Well, we had another one of those Flux Sundays where everything feels kind of right - the actors are on and the scripts are good - and there is a kinetic camaraderie that makes the hours sweep by. Playwright Aaron Michael Zook described this heightened state in the last scene of his We Are Burning, that feeling when a struck baseball reaches the top of its arc and is neither rising nor falling; we lived there a little today.

Oh, and a cool breeze was blowing in, messing with the pages, and the view from the 24th floor was showing off for us like it was the first time.

Speaking of, we welcomed Sunday first timers Kira Blaskovich and Mariam Habib to the group, and then launched into reading scenes from five plays: a scene from my Dark Matter, Jeremy Basescu's short play The Intervention, the 4th scene of Corey Ann Haydu's Wife Training, Daren Taylor's new musical, and the aforementioned scene of We Are Burning.

Dark Matter
Jason Paradine's irreverent physicist Afruz Sen got us off to a rollicking start with his speech about terra incognita and dark matter (yup). Ken Glickfeld's Jimmy fought with all his considerable charm to drive again in spite of the Doctor's warning, Becky Kelly and Kira (playing a dude) found the edge of two kids starting to push limits, and Nancy Franklin caught the fire of physicist Maxine, balancing her dying daughter, senile father, and charming competitor against her need to discover the next break through.

The Intervention
Wow, this one cooked! A ridiculous farce about an unusual intervention was treated with a deadly (and hilarious) seriousness by Candice Holdorf, Jason, Corey, Isaiah Tanenbaum and Mariam. Following on the strong energy of Dark Matter, The Intervention tossed the afternoon into the firmament. Candice especially found every nuance of ludicrous urgency in Jeremy's funny, funny play.

Wife Training
Corey's disturbingly 'normal' look at a world where women are rigorously judged for marriage on looks, sexual skill, baby ability (and a good deal more squirm-inducing qualities) by a court of male elders took another twist of the knife. Two gentleman judges look through a pile of women to decide which candidates are strong enough to be placed in the first round. The kindness that Luke (Ken again) shows towards the daughter of his own jilted prospect from man years ago makes their casual cruelty even more powerful. These are real people in a world like ours, only twisted a notch to be grotesque. We're looking forward to more of this funny and disturbing world.

i don <} u ne mor
We then leapt into Daren Taylor's musical comedy about the hope for connection in a digitalized world. I'm really excited that Daren (also a talented actor) is bringing in pages, and loved the energy and warmth of his characters: the panicking, inhaler-prone Ron (Isaiah), laid back mystery roomy Nic (Autumn Horne), capable Sam (Cotton Wright), and malevolent force of nature boss Jaimie (Aaron). Will he break his protagonist's heart, or will Ron connect with his dream lover? Only a time of Sundays will tell.

We Are Burning
Sad, sad, sad to be finished with this brutal, metaphysical puzzle of a play about love and destiny. But it was a lovely ending. Haunted by a first perfect brush of the beyond, Will struggles to find anything to compare; and the savage Lucy beats against him, trying to provoke him into a real and lasting love. And this intimate tale unfolds against a bigger backdrop of Prometheus versus the Gods of Zeus, and other mythic figures driven by those Gods to tormented ends. God-struck, these characters at last find a hot kind of peace; but not before a comic tryst in the bathroom becomes a haunting image of Lucy's ability to be inches away from Will's soul, and still unseen. A last great turn as Lucy from Ingrid Nordstrom, with a beautifully still and poignant read of Io by Cotton Wright.

Sometimes you are in the right place, doing the right things, with the right people. Thank you, right people. Read the full story

Updating Blogroll

Saturday, May 30, 2009 2 comments

We are in the process of updating our blog roll to more accurately reflect the bloggers we read, the artists we love, and the companies we dig. It's a work in process, so please let us know if there are any glaring omissions. Read the full story

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Matthew Freeman's Interview of James Comtois

A great interview regarding audience empathy, protagonist morality, and James Comtois' upcoming production of Infectious Opportunity, featuring frequent Flux Sunday collaborator David Ian Lee and sound design by Patrick Shearer at the Brick's Antidepressant Festival.

Listen to it, and then get your tickets here! Read the full story

Check out The Children's Hour!

Friday, May 29, 2009 1 comments


Flux friends Jessi D. Hill, Caleb Levengood and Emily Morgan DeAngelis (director, set designer and costume designer, respectively, for Flux's production of Angel Eaters last November) have joined forces again to create a beautiful production of The Children's Hour for Astoria Performing Arts Center.


The Children's Hour, written by Lillian Hellman, tells the story of two women whose lives, relationships and careers are ruined when a disgruntled student at the girls boarding school that they run accuses them of lesbian activity. Although written in 1934, The Children's Hour continues to illustrate just how devastating and destructive fear mixed with the power of suggestion can be.


The visual elements of the production were impeccable and the actors turn in strong performances across the board. Ms. Hill does particularly well in capturing the ruthless dynamic of middle school politics.


Performances are running now through June 7th. For tickets, showtimes, directions and other additional information, check out APAC's website here.
Check it out!




Read the full story

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ITBA's Citation For Excellence for Flux!

Thursday, May 28, 2009 2 comments

Well, this bit of good news caught us all by surprise:

Winners of the 2009 ITBA AWARDS Announced!
CITATION FOR EXCELLENCE IN OFF-OFF BROADWAY THEATER
Flux Theatre Ensemble

This is exciting for several reasons, and let's count them:

1. We're in good company: not only Broadway biggies like Billy Elliot, but one of my favorite show of the year, Universal Robots (how I wish that could be running for a long time on Broadway)

2. We respect the judges: many of our favorite bloggers are a part of this association.

3. I discovered many new bloggers to check out.

4. The acronym, ITBA, stands for Independent Theatre Bloggers Association, but according to Google, is also the acronym for the Indiana Traditional Bowhunters Association and the Irish Thoroughbred Breeders Association. Imagine if these three organizations were to join forces in all-powerful consortium of theatre bloggers riding throroughbreds armed with bows. Look out, theatre world!

And THANK YOU to the ITBA. Can't wait to see what's next! Read the full story

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Endowed Artist Chairs vs Social Networks

Wednesday, May 27, 2009 1 comments

Ok, it's not really a versus, in fact, they could be quite complimentary. But Isaac and Adam and 99 Seats have been having a great conversation regarding the creation of endowed artists chairs at institutional theatres. Essentially, these position would be treated the same as capital campaigns, only instead of building theatre spaces, they would build an endowed position for an artist, similar to what you find at universities and orchestras. These capital campaigns would create a 'chair' artists position that would ensure a fair wage and health insurance to an artist who commits long term to a company.

The Public is, in fact, doing this with Suzan-Lori Parks. And TCG's Fox Fellowships offer a temporary version of this with the Fox Fellowship that could be framed as some form of seed money to help the community generate the endowed position.

But at the end of Isaac's post, he considers what change would need to happen with the audience (subscriber and donor base) to make this happen, believing that most institutions would be unlikely to commit to an endowed chair unless there was audience support from it.

Well, we might rally that change from within an institution. Or, the change may very well come from outside of it.

Chris Elam of Misnomer Dance Theater is currently working on something called the Audience Engagement Platform. It was written up in the Times, and has received significant seed money. If it or a similar arts-based social network is successful, it could lead to a radical rethinking of how theatre is made and artists are paid. A key quote:

"AEP is designed as a long-term, arts-wide solution that will facilitate meaningful and productive two-way interaction between those who create art and those who appreciate it"
This platform (or something like it) has many exciting possible applications, but in this context, it allows for a rethinking of how theatre is funded. Imagine that instead of your Facebook account being just acquaintances and friends, it is a social network of self-selected audience members who want to follow your work. Let's say that one of the audience members on your list is convinced that you as Playwright A simply must work with Director B, Actors C, D and E, and Designer F. That audience member then proposes the idea of this collaboration to the network of all six artists. Let's say that 500 audience members following each artist agree that this collaboration has to happen. These 3,000 people each give $20 to the project, and $60,000 is now raised. Perhaps this donation serves as their ticket as well, making the project sell out its first few weeks (assuming the online functionality could handle some form of self-reservations).

These artists now have enough seed money to create a unique work of art with revenue generated solely by an audience already committed to seeing it. Each audience member is a producer, and as such, is intimately more connected to the project, and more likely to follow the artists' work afterwards. Each artist sees their audience base grow significantly from the crossover.

How does this now relate to the endowed chair idea? Taking the above thoughts one step further, funders and corporations now have the opportunity to reach the audience of art they support in a more direct and meaningful way. Let's say that each of 3,000 audience members listed above can generate an additional $5 from funders/sponsors by filling out a survey or watching a 30 second spot from the funder/sponsor. For $15,000, I have guaranteed 3,000 people from a coveted demographic have interacted with my company in a positive, self-selected way, all while supporting the arts. This could then translate into audience generated chairs - if 3,000 audience members believe that an artists should stay in one place to make work, and 3 funders believe in supporting that work, you have a salary competitive with top university and orchestra chairs, all created by a direct connection between audience, artists and funder.

Should institutions support artist endowed chairs? Absolutely. But a more radical and significant change is possible; one that connects artist and audience directly in the collaboration of producing theatre. We're always wondering what the audience wants, and talking about serving that audience; we may be reaching a time where the audience tells us what it wants by serving itself. Read the full story

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On post mortems and transparency

Tuesday, May 26, 2009 3 comments

A great post from Arts Marketing on transparency has me thinking about the direction of this blog. In general, our blog functions as a hub of what we're doing, but it focuses on the positive, omitting negative reviews and internal conflicts.

On the one hand, I think that's right - this blog should be a positive window into what we're doing, and it should tread carefully where the feelings of our artists are concerned. But, I agree with Chad that ultimately, it is healthier for a company to tends towards openness. The truth will out, and staying ahead of it gives you credibility.

The truth is also, of course, more interesting than spin, and therefore better at creating interest and connection in our process.

That said, most of our Pretty Theft post mortem should remain internal, but I can say it was our hardest and best post mortem yet - specific, honest, with an eye towards solutions rather than endlessly rehashing problems. Communication and clarity of organizational structure remain challenges for us, even after all of the work we did at our last retreat. It seems each show demands a new variation on our working arrangement, and while that flexibility is a strength, it can lead to confusion and ultimately, frustration. Identifying at the beginning of each process a clear hierarchy of decision making, clarifying expectations, and communicating time lines is something we're doing, but can definitely improve upon. Finding a way to give our Members a sense of ownership in all of our projects, regardless of their personal level of involvement, needs further attention. We need to continue to articulate to others how we work aesthetically, and how that method can flex to include contrasting working styles. And finally, the difficulty of wearing both financial and artistic hats makes certain decisions complex.

But despite those challenges (and others that shall remain mysterious and internal), I was extremely proud of the passion and relentless attention to detail that lead to our successul production of Pretty Theft. We learned a great deal, further clarified core values, worked with some great new (and familiar) artists, and shone light on a beautiful play. On to the next!

And what, dear reader, are you thoughts on organizational transparency? And Ensemble structures? Please share... Read the full story

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The Past From The Present Moment

Monday, May 25, 2009 0 comments

So, during our discussion after the read through of the latest draft of The Lesser Seductions Of History, Michael Davis (our wonderful George) brought up a really interesting challenge inherent in the play:

Showing past action in the present moment.

The play follows ten characters through each year of the 1960s, and so is episodic in nature. Much of the action of the play takes place between scenes, and what we are shown is the moment of significant conflict and/or change; not necessarily the steps leading up to it.

In other words, each scene is like a high diving board that leads to another jump.

Every play has an element of this, our play more than most. The audience needs to discover what happened between the years through the changed relationships of the characters in the scenes - learning the past through the present moment - so that we see the moment where a souring relationship breaks or heals - but we don't see all the souring.

This will be a challenge to the actors, but for now, it is a challenge for me - to string all these moments together so that what is episodic in nature feels instead like an unbroken chain of desire, conflict and change.

Any thoughts of other plays that solve (or fail to solve) this particular challenge? Any thoughts on how?

I'm hoping to open up the process of this play to y'all who care to read it - hold me to it! Read the full story

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Flux Sunday, May 24th

Sunday, May 24, 2009 2 comments

What is Flux Sunday?

We're back!

And very happy to be back. Though we were a smaller, Memorial Day weekend crowd, the thrill of being back to work was strong. We read through three scenes: the end of Mary Fengar Gail's The Usher's Ball, the beginning of Jeremy Basescu's Onion Amnesia, and a rewritten How To Go from me.

Finishing Mary's play was bittersweet. Set in World War I, Anabelle and Wilfred are bound together during a lightning strike that gives them both enhanced perception. To say of what exactly would spoil the play, but suffice to say, the end took full advantage of this power. The Usher's Ball is a play about pacifism in a warlike culture, about love of music and theatre, and as with Mary's play Devil Dog Six (which I just finished), about a singular woman with an uncanny power, desperate for connection and uncertain of place. The play has a melancholy end, though there is a moment of grace in its ritualistic epilogue. Brian Pracht and Ingrid Nordstrom gave moving reads as Wilfred and Annabelle in their final scene.

We then turned to my How to Go, a play last worked on at Flux Sunday in November of 2007 - a week before this blog began! Yup, sometimes producing plays means you have less time to write them. But, I knew I'd have some key players to do it right, and so I did some rewrites and wrote a new scene, and the play seems to be demanding a move up the queue (the queue currently stands at: finishing 2nd draft of Lesser Seductions, plotting Dark Matter, first draft of Stepping, and 2nd draft of Honey Fist and then a mob of plays elbowing for position- Far Distant Classes, Angel Juice, Denny and Lila).
ANYWAY, the reading featured some stand out work from Gregory Waller as Sand, Ingrid Nordstrom as both sisters (Lucy and Sammy), Isaiah Tannenbaum reprising his role as the terrified and precocious Alexander, and of course, Ken Glickfeld returning as the Gonzo patriarch of the clan, Parker.
The reading sparked an interesting conversation about outlandish or brilliant ways to end ones life that made us all eager for something lighter after the break.

And Jeremy Basescu's Onion Amnesia: The Terifying Tale Of A Woman Who Forgot What A Vegetable Is delivered. The plot is ably summarized in the title, so all I will add is that Nora Hummel was hilarious as Laura, the eponymous de-vegetabled heroine, constantly struggling to keep up with a world gone several degrees askew. Also strong was Drew Valins double turn as hapless husband Hal, and as Cindy, Laura's ferociously nice boss.

Yes, it was good to be back. And I'm going to try to be better about posting our progress at Flux Sundays, which fell off early this year. Hold me to it! Read the full story

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Farewell To Pretty Theft

Tuesday, May 19, 2009 0 comments


(Photo: Isaiah Tanenbaum. Pictured: Marnie Schulenburg, Maria Portman Kelly)

Well, it's closed, and all of us are very sad. THANK YOU to everyone who made time to see it. And if you want to give us just a wee bit more of that time, please vote for us at the New York Innovative Theatre Awards.

But we're not resting, oh no. Tonight we have a read through of the latest draft of The Lesser Seductions Of History, our fall production.

Onward! Read the full story

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Out Takes Part Three: The Doctors

Sunday, May 17, 2009 0 comments

Here's another scene that Adam cut from the play - this one during Joe's trip to the Hospital for The Mentally Deranged. If kept, it would give a more comic entry into the nightmare world of the hospital - but it had to go.

And so will the show itself, so if you haven't already, go get your tickets!

(JOE sits in a chair in a straight jacket. Two DOCTORS in white coats circle him. The lights are dreamlike.)

DOCTOR 1
I am concerned he’s not getting enough drugs.

DOCTOR 2
I have the same concern, doctor.

DOCTOR 1
Nurse, see that he gets three hundred and thirty three more cc’s of centa-rama-thol.

DOCTOR 2
And twenty seven more cc’s of orga-rata-thol.

DOCTOR 1
And eighty-five more cc’s of prozacoril.

DOCTOR 2
And give him a bath.

DOCTOR 1
Give the poor fucker a thrill.

(The DOCTORS laugh.)

DOCTOR 2
And don’t scrimp on the soap.

DOCTOR 1
And while he’s taking a bath, dose him with fifty five thousand more cc’s of cortapentathol.

DOCTOR 2
And ninety thousand more cc’s of gor-vidal-a-cal.

DOCTOR 1
I should give Gore Vidal a call.

(The DOCTORS laugh.)

DOCTOR 2
That joke never gets old. Read the full story

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Fractured Atlas' Diane Debicella Shout Out for Pretty Theft

Saturday, May 16, 2009 0 comments

A really nice note about Pretty Theft from Diane Debicella, the Program Director for Fractured Atlas. Flux LOVES Fractured Atlas, and all the amazing things they do for organizations like ours and individual artists, so this is especially sweet.

Only two more shows, so please read it and then go get your tickets! Read the full story

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Out Takes Part Two From Pretty Theft

Friday, May 15, 2009 0 comments

Really fascinating stuff Adam cut from the play focusing on Allegra's Mother (and the Waitress!) Read it below and then go get your tickets!

(ALLEGRA’S MOTHER in a spot on the other side of the stage.)

ALLEGRA’S MOTHER
Just like her father. Leaves me just like he does. Say they’ll be back but who really knows. Even under six feet, expect him to claw his way out into the sunlight. At night some times wake up in terror, no idea why of course. But expect him to be snoring beside me. Surprised when he isn’t. Don’t think I’ll ever stop being surprised he’s not there. She, well, she’s another story.

Haven’t been able to talk to her for years. Ever since she got her boobies she got a bug up her ass. I was never like that. I sang in the choir. Could you imagine just leaving like that night before the funeral. Had to sit there alone. Everyone asking where she was. As far as I know, she’s jumping off a bridge somewhere. Maybe drowned herself--Always wanted to be like her father.

Never understood me, even before she got a bug up her ass. And I never understood her. Before she could talk, it was easy to imagine her growing to be just like me. I knew then it wasn’t true but it was possible to believe. The body parts matched. Course she was clumsy and scared and never listened. Always doing what she was doing. Independent. Born that way I guess. Wonder if she’s still like that.

A second section Adam cut for Allegra's Mom and Waitress...

(On one side of the stage WAITRESS sits at a table, a couple of empty glasses in front of her. WAITER approaches.)

WAITER
You want another drink? Or something else?

WAITRESS
I’m looking for something that’s not going to run.

(ALLEGRA’S MOTHER revealed in her chair.)

WAITER
Want some chicken wings?

WAITRESS
Something that won’t up and run.

ALLEGRA’S MOTHER
Always a runner just like her dad. A dancer too, she thought but in her core a runner. Not that he ever got up, not that he ever stole away but he was never there, was he? Who knows where he bloody was. Who was that man?

WAITRESS
Who was that man?

WAITER
I got mozzarella sticks, got baskets of fries, got oysters and hot dogs and pickles and sour kraut.

ALLEGRA’S MOTHER
He wasn’t at work in his mind. Wasn’t with another woman. He just wasn’t with me. Not for years. Once upon a time he was. Long before the idea of death by disease. Before Allegra and couches and separate showers.

WAITRESS
Sometimes gnawing in your mind there’s a knowing, an ignoring a willful disregard for facts and instincts. I know I know, don’t want to believe. Want him to be available but he isn’t, is he? Never was, maybe wanted to be. Like forcing yourself to eat pickles. I hate pickles.

WAITER
Want a drink? On the house.

ALLEGRA’S MOTHER
What do other—

WAITRESS
What do other people do?

ALLEGRA’S MOTHER
Do they open up or close down?

WAITRESS
Do they leave town?

ALLEGRA’S MOTHER
Go to England.

WAITRESS
Marry rich.

ALLEGRA’S MOTHER
Buy low sell high.

WAITER
Get high on the back porch.

WAITRESS
Take a dive off the back porch.

ALLEGRA’S MOTHER
Stare at the night off your back porch. Allegra, come back to me.

WAITRESS
I need to use your phone.

WAITER
Phone’s in the corner.

(WAITRESS goes to phone.)

WAITER
I’ll get you another drink.

ALLEGRA’S MOTHER
Where are you Allegra?

WAITRESS
(on phone)
Hello, Tom. I think I have an idea where you can find those girls.

(Blackout.) Read the full story

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Pretty Theft a New Theater Corps Top Pick!

Check it out here, and then go get your tickets!But hurry - we sold out last night and had to turn people away. Turning people away is really sad - so prevent that by getting your tix today! Only 3 more shows...sniffle... Read the full story

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Poetic Larceny, May 11th

Saturday, May 9, 2009 1 comments

(Photo: Isaiah Tanenbaum. Pictured: Zack Robidas)

Join us Monday, May 11th
at 7PM for our fourth and final
Poetic Larceny
At Access Theater's Gallery
380 Broadway, 4th Floor

The Director:
Kelly O'Donnell

The Playwrights:
Bianca Bagatourian (Free Water), Erin Browne (X-Men), Mac Rogers (Path of the Breadcrumbs), Isaiah Tanenbaum (Perfectly Legitimate)

The Actors:
Havilah Brewster, Aidan Kane, Katie Hartke, Shannon Michael Wamser, Cotton Wright, Anthony Wills Jr

For reservations, please email August Schulenburg at gus@fluxtheatre.org.
Reservations encouraged, but not required. $5 suggested donation.


What is Poetic Larceny?

Read the full story

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Aaron Riccio on Pretty Theft

Friday, May 8, 2009 0 comments

(Photo: Isaiah Tanenbaum. Pictured: Marnie Schulenburg, Todd d'Amour)

Aaron Riccio's review came out! He's had us in suspense...but it's worth the wait. I'm glad that he embraces the tonal dissonances in the play - the way Adam sets Allegra's scene with her father against Bobby and Suzy in the movie theatre - as a central strength of the play.

I'm realizing that this juxtaposition of tonal/stylistic/emotional contrasts - similar to the Elizabethan way of throwing Dogberry and Beatrice into the same play - is a strong aesthetic value of Flux's. The sparks of those contradictory things (provided they are driven by an underlying human need and not done merely for affect) stand at the heart of much of the work we've done - from Lyza's ecstatic preaching undercut by GL with the axe in Riding the Bull, to Segismundo sharing a cell with Clarin in Life is a Dream, to Snake and Ernelle necking in the car waiting for Osley to commit his terrible act in Rattlers, to the antic realism of Pretty Theft exploding mid-way into frightening dreams before the hard landing in the hotel room; a core human impulse transformed from the ridiculous and mundane to the horrible and sublime and back; this transformative kind of theatre, because it still believes in narrative, character and catharsis is not called experimental, but feels endlessly surprising to me. We know what we are, but not what we may be...

Anyway, read the review, and then go get your tickets! Read the full story

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Sean Williams on Pretty Theft

Thursday, May 7, 2009 0 comments


(Photo: Isaiah Tanenbaum. Pictured: Maria Portman Kelly, Brian Pracht, Marnie Schulenburg)

Sean Williams of Gideon Productions gives Flux a nice shout out on his blog, Seanrants (scroll down the page to get there). This is especially exciting because Sean is not only a talented actor, but through Gideon Productions, the producer of awesome stuff like Hail Satan, The Blueprint Plays, and my favorite play this year, Universal Robots.

Read it here, and then go get your tickets! Read the full story

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Retrovision Media on Pretty Theft


(Photo: Isaiah Tanenbaum. Pictured: Cotton Wright)

A spirited review from RetroVision Media that makes (with the upcoming post from Seanrants) two reviews that work Winona Ryder into the mix.

Read it here, and then go get your tickets! Read the full story

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The Fifth Wall on Pretty Theft


(Photo: Isaiah Tanenbaum. Pictured: Cotton Wright, Zack Robidas)

A nice write up of Pretty Theft (and Desire Under The Elms) at The Fifth Wall. This is (and will almost certainly be) the only review that mentions me (I was the ticket tearer).

Read it here, and then go get your tickets! Read the full story

18 Reasons To See Pretty Theft

Sunday, May 3, 2009 3 comments

(Photo: Isaiah Tanenbaum. Pictured: Maria Portman Kelly, Marnie Schulenburg)

Wondering why you should see Pretty Theft? Here is a reason for every dollar of our ticket price. Read them, and then go get your tickets!

1. The Ensemble
"This ensemble could easily stand in the ranks of the greatest ensembles ever assembled"
-Toby Thelin, Theatre Knights (&Daze)

2. The Playwright
"(Adam) Szymkowicz has not only taken the notion of theft and flipped it on its head — he’s taken a story about human beings at their worst and shown how we can claw our way back from the brink by finding the good within ourselves."
-Steven Snyder, The Villager

3. The Director
"A taught production...disturbing but touching...Angela Astle, the director, elicits some strong, affecting performances"
-Anita Gates, The New York Times
Link
4. The Story
-"...It's these elements that come together to make Pretty Theft a sometimes sad, sometimes funny, and at times nostalgic coming-of-age story."
-Patrice Contino, Flavorpill

5. Candice Holdorf as The Waitress
"Candice Holdorf makes the most of every scene, suggesting a lifetime of disappointment and settling for a character not even granted a first name."
-Doug Strassler, OffOffOnline

6. Cotton Wright as The Supervisor/Allegra's Mother
"(Cotton) Wright's simple yet distinctive physical choices as Allegra's Mom, the Supervisor, and one of Joe's ballerina's gave her a specificity that allowed her really ground the play."
-Zack Calhoon, Visible Soul

7. Heather Cohn's set design
"The technical sureness of Heather Cohn’s set pays big dividends, as the ballet barres become the coffee shop counter, a bed-sized platform skilfully portrays several different rooms, and cubes outfitted with handy cloth pouches and that clever mirrored platform do most of the rest of the scenery work."
-Jon Sobel, Blogcritics
Link
8. Marnie Schulenburg as Allegra
"Wonderfully effective in the first play of the Flux Theatre Ensemble's Angel Eaters trilogy last winter, Schulenburg delivers a restrained, affecting performance as the quietly lonely Allegra."
-Mark Peikert, Backstage

9. Becky Kelly's Costume Design
"Becky Kelly's costumes are well-considered and spot on with a great use of color."
-Chris Harcum, nytheatre.com

10. Maria Portman Kelly as Suzy
"Equally compelling is Maria Portman Kelly as Suzy, whose pouty, mean-girl petulance does not overwhelm her affability as an actress."
-Kitty Lindsay, Theatre Is Easy

11. Andy Fritsch's Lighting Design
"The lighting design by Andy Fritsch also added a lot to the sheer visual beauty of this show."
-Toby Thelin, Theatre Knights (& Daze)


12. Zack Robidas as Bobby
"Zack Robidas...provides howling comic relief as the heroine’s appallingly selfish boyfriend"
-Patrick Lee, Just Shows To Go You

13. Ashley Martinez's Choreography
-"Sometimes lithe and lovely, sometimes screeching and twisted, these ballerinas serve as the linchpins which keep everything crazily bound together."
-Karen Tortora-Lee, Theatre Buzz

14. Brian Pracht as Joe
"Pracht is nothing short of a divine presence, heartbreaking and true"
-Doug Strassler, OffOffOnline

15. Kevin Fuller's Sound Design
"Kevin Fuller's sound design add(s) to this half-realistic, half-impressionistic world in frequently subtle ways."
-Chris Harcum, nytheatre.com

16. Todd d'Amour as Marco
"I’ll be damned if d’Amour doesn’t give one of the better performances as a villain I’ve seen all year."
-Ethan Stanislawski, Tynan's Anger

17. Lynn Kenny as The Psychiatrist
"Every performance is nuanced and extremely well crafted;...Lynn Kenny’s Nurse Ratchet-like Supervisor"
-Toby Thelin, Theatre Knights (&Daze)

18. Audience Members Love It!
"This show is never boring and will sit with you for long after you have left the theatre."
-posted on the Theatermania user website

You don't need reasons to be pretty when you have 18 reasons to see Pretty Theft.
(Sorry.)

Now get your tix before I'm forced to make more show based puns... Read the full story

New York Theater Review 2009 at BPC, Wed May 6th

Flux blog reading friends,

Be sure to go and support (or at least buy the book) New York Theater Review's 2009 collection of plays and theatre essays. New York Theater Review has been a friend to artists of Flux for some time now - Riding the Bull and Adam Szymkowicz's Food For Fish were published in the 2006 and 2007 editions, and this upcoming edition features a play from Ellen McLaughlin ( who participated in our Food:Soul staged reading of This Storm Is What We Call Progress) and David Ian Lee's Sleeper (developed at Flux Sundays). It also features short plays from our friends at BlueBox Productions Sticky series, which has frequently featured the work of Flux Sunday regulars like Erin Browne, Jeremy Basescu, myself and Michael Swartz. Editor Brook Stowe is one of the great champions of important Indie theatre work, and I am so excited about this edition - read on for more!

Black Wave Press
proudly announces the imminent release of the
New York Theater Review 2009
at the
Bowery Poetry Club
NYC
212.614.0505
Wednesday, May 6
6-7:30pm
FREE!
The evening will feature excerpts from this year's plays and essays
and inevitably
the unexpected
the out-of-control
but never
ever
the mundane
Come On Down!
It's
100%FREE!!
The fourth annual edition of the New York Theater Review continues our exploration of the finest in contemporary NYC alt-theater blended with an ongoing investigation of its colorful and often underrepresented past.

Justin Tracy leads off the 2009 edition with an appreciation of playwright, teacher and critic Arthur Sainer; Cynthia Croot sits down with six Arab and Arab-American theater artists to discuss similarities and differences in Middle Eastern and NYC theater and Lane Pianta contributes an insightful piece on the theater of Ben Spatz and his Urban Research Theater.

In plays, NYTR branches out this year with the inclusion of twelve short works from Manhattan's Blue Box Productions' "Sticky" series plus Ellen McLaughlin's Kissing the Floor, a disturbing Depression-era riff on Sophocles' Antigone that explores the lengths and limits of family blood ties and David Ian Lee's Sleeper, a continent-hopping, time-shifting dissection of America's troubled post-9/11 legacy.
New York Theater Review 2009
Bring a print-out of this email with you to our BPC Event May 6
and receive a $5 discount on our $19.95 cover price!
Shipping May 15
Read the full story

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Poetic Larceny - May 4th

Saturday, May 2, 2009 0 comments

(Photo: Isaiah Tanenbaum. Pictured: Zack Robidas)

Join us Monday, May 4th
at 7PM for our third
Poetic Larceny
At Access Theater's Gallery
380 Broadway, 4th Floor

The Director:
Michael Davis

The Playwrights:
Bekah Brunstetter (Old People, Making Out), Corey Ann Haydu (Runaway Love), David Ian Lee (And Now The Ruthless Truth), Andrea Thome (Shorakapkok)

The Actors:
Mariam Habib, Amy Fitts, Nick Monroy, Carolyn Ratteray, Isaiah Tanenbaum, Greg Waller


For reservations, please email August Schulenburg at gus@fluxtheatre.org.
Reservations encouraged, but not required. $5 suggested donation.


What is Poetic Larceny?
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OffOffOnline's Doug Strassler on Pretty Theft

Friday, May 1, 2009 0 comments


(Photo: Isaiah Tanenbaum. Pictured: Candice Holdorf, Cotton Wright, Marnie Schulenburg, Lynn Kenny)

Doug Strassler at Offoffonline has written a great review for Pretty Theft!

Read it here, and then come see the show! Read the full story

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The Villager's Steven Snyder on Pretty Theft


(Photo: Isaiah Tanenbaum. Pictured: Marnie Schulenburg, Brian Pracht)

Steven Snyder of The Villager not only reviews the show, but weaves in an interview he conducted with Adam - good and insightful reading. Check it out here, and and then come see the show! Read the full story