While life has been difficult in one way or another for just about everyone lately, I was recently reminded that it can also deliver nice surprises right when you need them.
About six weeks ago, I answered a call for submissions from a theatre company in the United Kingdom called INK. They were seeking two-minute duologue plays designed for radio.
I've certainly written very (very) short plays before, but not specifically geared for the radio. But I thought, what the heck. I'll give it a go.
I had a premise for the play, and the first draft took me roughly 30 minutes to write. I then returned to it the next day, made a few edits and then fired off my brand new two minute duologue, Finding Balance to INK.
To my surprise and delight INK selected the play for broadcast on BBC Radio Suffolk!
I don't believe any of my work has ever been performed by a U.K. theatre company before, so I was especially excited by the news.
The artistic team at INK and Jon Wright of Radio Suffolk who interviewed me after the play live (eek!) could not have been kinder, and the actresses, Jill Freud and Esther Freud (yes, they're related to THAT Freud) who performed the piece were terrific!
If you'd like to hear my very (very) short play followed by the interview, just click on the BBC Radio Suffolk logo at the top of this post. After a few seconds of earwormy dance music, Jon segues into his intro of the play.
Hope you enjoy it! 🤞
My second bike tour video that I produced in partnership with Village Preservation is now posted!
🚴♀️ In this latest short video I highlight examples of public art, monuments, and landmarks in the Greenwich Village area.
🚴♀️ The video also features SUPER interviews, including a special chat with UK-based professional sculptor Isabel Coulton and her delightful mum--who was Pablo Picasso's muse for "The Bust of Sylvette!" Sylvette (who now goes by Lydia) is, quite literally, an inspiration. You won't want to miss her! I also interview Michael Venturiello, the founder and highly knowledgeable lead tour guide of Christopher Street Tours.
🚴♀️ There is much to discover and enjoy in our neighborhoods, and I look forward to covering more meaningful downtown NYC sites in my next video.
🚴♀️ If you missed my first bike video, you can check it out HERE.
I'm a HUGE fan of LinkedIn. I've been a member for close to 10 years now, and I'm pretty active on the platform. It's way more than just a place to hunt for jobs and it's definitely my favorite of all the social media platforms out there by far. It's a place to network, learn, meet people from all over the world, and yes, job hunt, but it's also where I get the most promotional bang for my (free!) buck.
In fact, here's an article I just published there. My first! My plan is to publish an article on LinkedIn about once a month going forward. Articles are more long form than standard posts. The piece was really fun to write and I look forward to seeing what kind of interaction it gets. This is all trial and error, so, whatever interaction it gets (or doesn't) I'm just excited to have taken this step and to keep going from here.
I otherwise post on LinkedIn in my regular feed pretty often, so if you want to see what I'm up to or what's on my mind, let me know you found my website and send me a connection request!
So many industries are taking a hit as a result of Covid-19, but I would argue that no other industry is experiencing the level of devastation that Broadway, other live entertainment and cultural organizations and arts professionals are experiencing. The arts and entertainment industry and its jobs were the first to go...and they will be the last to come back.
The hit to the theatre industry in New York City, from Broadway on down, also affects the many restaurants and bars, hotels, parking lots and retail shops that rely on the theatre to keep their businesses afloat. New York City will not fully recover until Broadway is back. Tourists come to New York largely for Broadway.
Yet, while we all wait to see how Broadway can come back amidst Covid-19, there is currently no financial support in sight for arts and culture from the federal government. Hoping this changes, as I fear that many lives that are directly connected to Broadway -- mine included -- could become very challenging, very soon, especially if Congress does not vote to extend the $600.00 unemployment supplement.
I am confident Broadway and theatre in other parts of New York City and beyond will eventually come back, but it will take a while -- and, sadly, not all the organizations will be able to hold on long enough to return.
In the meantime, I hold on to my many happy memories as a playwright, musical theatre writer and theatre industry professional to keep my spirits up. To that end, I recently shared one of these memories as part of a challenge that has been circulating on social media. If you've EVER worked in the theatre in any way, be sure to share your own favorite memory on your social platforms!
To all professionals in the film, television, theatre, entertainment, and arts world, join the challenge to post a photo of you in your job. Just a picture, no description. The goal is to flood social media with our profession. #SaveTheArts 🎭💔
🗣️< MASSIVE shout out and special thanks to Metropolitan Playhouse, Producing Artistic Director Alex Roe, Director John Long, Artist Danny Licul, and our amazing cast: Maxwell Bartel, Alia Chapman, and Kim Yancey-Moore!
🗣️< The reading of my brand new short play Grassroots on June 27th was AMAZING!
🗣️< And -- despite our physical separation -- the talkback afterward was deeply felt and thought-provoking!
🗣️< And the Zoom after-parties were a total blast! 🥂🤪
🗣️< I'm so thrilled and grateful that I got to meet so many new lovely and talented individuals through this process!
🗣️< Like everyone else, I miss the live theatre experience, but, at the same time, I find myself connecting with people I would have likely never otherwise met...
...and this continues to be a gift.) ❤️
New York City and its people have a long history of heroism and resilience.
In this video I produced for the highly respected non-profit Village Preservation, I take you on a special bike tour that highlights downtown public art and landmarks that honor our past and resonate with our times today.
If you enjoy the video, please give it a “LIKE!"👍🚴🏼♀️
Well, the world has certainly changed since my initial 2020 post. (Yikes!)
Yet, despite this, I still continue to forge ahead with my number one 2020 goal -- Producing More Video!
These strange circumstances we now all find ourselves in have provided me with the unexpected gift of time. Time to focus on those activities that make my heart sing. Time to slow down and take in the small things. And just time to get totally quiet and clear and focus on what's important -- and that for me includes focusing on what's important through the camera lens.
Just before everything shut down around here back in mid-March, I produced a short video for Village Preservation that highlighted one of our terrific small downtown businesses. I was already planning to produce more small business videos for VP when things took a turn. I have tremendous faith, though, that small businesses will come back and, when they do -- I will be ready to help promote them!
In the meantime, the limits on the ability to interact with people IRL has forced me to figure out ways to use this restriction to my advantage. To that end, I conceived a video project that I'm currently in the midst of shooting right now, and that I expect to complete in a few weeks. It's going to be great, and I can't wait to post it here!
These are not only surreal times, but also terribly painful times for many, many people. Yet, I see this as a chance for each of us, in our own way, whatever our circumstances, to regain some sense of clarity, to regroup, to rejuvenate -- and to refocus.
I hope you also see 2020 as an opportunity to refocus your life in some way that brings you joy.
The short video I produced under my Rockinworks shingle featuring Left Bank Books.
I settled in a new place in 2019. Not geographically. I now see people, my world and the world at large from a new perspective -- and it feels really good. Though I'm still on the road of transformation, and it hasn't been easy, I'm excited to be on this route, and encourage anyone seeking an inner shift to consider taking just one step in 2020 towards making a tough, but meaningful inner change. I promise, it will get you on a smoother path with prettier views.
Seeing the world from this new vantage point, I plan to further explore video work with my snazzy new mirrorless hybrid camera. I feel a creative pull to express myself in this way. There's nothing like the creative pull, so when you feel it, you gotta run with it! Even if you don't know where it will take you.
The video I produced of the 2019 Happy Hour Theatre Crawl
I wish all of you a 2020 that takes you down smoother paths, brings creative pulls, and provides fresh new views and adventures both without and within.
I had one of the most joyful summers I can remember in recent memory, and it unofficially wrapped up with a literal "bang" over Labor Day weekend in Long Beach Island (thanks to a glorious fireworks display over the bay).
I hope you enjoy my happy LBI footage and puts you there with me.
More videos to come this fall.
I continue to have an excellent summer filled with friends, family, fun -- and learning.
I enjoyed combining both friends and learning in my latest short video piece. All shot and edited in a few hours at the lake house retreat of one of my best buddies. AND I added my new animated logo in the opening. I created the animation on my own. I didn't need to hire anyone to make it for me, or use an expensive design website. Nope. Taught myself.
What a super empowering feeling THAT was. Yeah.
And I continue to discover that examining life through video is expanding my perception and feeding my curiosity in new and vibrant ways. For this, I'm super grateful. Because life -- at least for me -- is always about staying curious.
So, if you are seeking 4 minutes and 30 seconds of peace from your day, I hope you will check out "Summer Daze: Pocahontas Lake".
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