Don’t expect any extended writing this weekend. I’m taking part on something called the “48 Hour Stage Show,” a one-act play showcase created entirely from scratch in one 48 hour period. It’s a very cool idea, but it remains to be seen how it’s all going to shake out.
I’m not completely new to this kind of idea. Back in 2008 I took part in a 24 hour play, cast and produced in one day. It was a fun experience, but it was also a bit of a cheat. The play, Months on End by Craig Pospisil, was not a new work. It had already been written – and our director presumably already had a few ideas in mind. Years later I would take part in a 48 hour short film festival, which was much more organic. My friend Jason and I wrote and shot a script (he did the editing – I’m not gifted in the technical arts). But this is a whole different animal.
I found out about the 48 Hour Stage Show through actors access, a resource that provides actors with casting notices. I submitted and was invited to join in. That’s all I really knew going into today’s casting meeting.
So there I sat, in a room with 20 other people. As we went around the room, introducing ourselves and presenting an object with unique meaning in our lives (I, of course, brought my cherished Buck Showalter bobblehead), the writers began generating ideas from what was being said. After they pitched their ceoncepts, the casting process began.
I’m a bit of a meek individual, especially if I don’t know anyone in a given crowd. It’s hard for me to make an impression in an environment like this. I probably could have gotten away with just sneaking out without being cast in anything. Believe me, I considered it. But I’m rooting around for new experiences, so I had a dilemma. The writers had pitched their stories, and now I had to pitch myself
I approached a couple of the writer-directors, hoping to find a place in their projects. Kenny was receptive to my involvement in his piece, based in part of my purported improvisation abilities. I lost touch with him as the evening progressed, however, so I don’t know if that one is still going down. I guess we’ll find out tomorrow.
Tomorrow we rehearse, and apparently most of my day will be taken up by Kun’s play. This gentleman was looking for actors willing to collaborate and make something together. Very vague, I know. And I’m still not sure what Kun’s one-act will entail – it’s being written as we speak. But apparently I will find out tomorrow between 1 and 4 pm.
I say “apparently” because I don’t really know. Obviously there is bound to be quite a bit of on-the-fly planning involved in a project like the 48 Hour Stage Show, but I was pretty surprised by just how disorganized a couple aspects of the endeavor are. That’s the nature of the beast, though. I expect everything will become more clear as we move along.
And that’s the whole point. We’re not going to know what this show is until it goes up on Sunday. And I kind of can’t wait to find out. There’s always a chance it will be a shitshow, but it will be our shitshow.