Category Archives: Jen Browne

MEGA ROUND UP!!!

You’ve read our weekly rounds ups and they were of course entertaining and now we bring you (in a booming echoing voice) MEGA ROUND UP!!!!!!

MEGA ROUND UP!!!!! compiles an entire summer’s worth of happenings, two weeks of long form adventures, and a whole lot of madcapperie in one concise post.  It’s MEGA ROUND UP!!!!

THE BEGINNING:

It all started in June 2014 when Filling the Well: An Artists Retreat took the Lather, Rinse, Repeat playwrights by the hand and led them on an amazing journey at the Dragon’s Egg Studio in Ledyard, CT.   Gorging on healthy, hearty food, sunshine, and inspiration everybody left very full indeed.

SUMMER: A SEASON OF DOING AND THEN DOING MORE

Moving ever deeper into summer, a time when many New Yorkers escape the city, travel, maybe even rest or “chill-out” as the kids sometimes say, but not our LRR playwrights, not at all.   LRR playwrights do not believe in taking it easy.  They laugh at summer vacations.  Their work is their vacation.  When asked what they did on their “summer vacation” here is what some of our playwrights had to say:

Tim Errickson: For my summer vacation I’ve directed the New York premiere of John Patrick Bray’s DONKEY in the Planet Connections Festival, which was nominated for 13 Festival awards, followed by producing A MIDSUMMER NIGHTS DREAM in Central Park and LOVE’S LABOUR’S LOST in Bryant Park. I also returned to serve on the New York Innovative Theatre Awards Honorary Awards Committee, and am leading NYIT through a six month Board refresh process. Plus I’m getting married at some point.  (and he did, just last week)

Isaac Rathbone: For my summer vacation my play “The Gnome” received a staged reading at Barter Theater’s Appalachian Festival of Plays and Playwrights in Abingdon, VA on 7/8. I attended the festival and met some wonderful people, including the other amazing playwrights associated with the festival. (he also just remounted an amazing play called March of the Bonus Army, if you missed it, well, you missed out, didn’t you)

Lauren Ferebee: For my summer vacation I finished up a six-month residency in South Carolina with a workshop production of my play The Reckless Season (my first round Lather, Rinse, Repeat play).  In July,  I was a juried fellow at the Saltonstall Arts Colony, where I wrote, read and ate delicious food in Ithaca, NY. My play Sexual Geography (third round play for LRR) was selected for March Forth Productions’ Summer Salon in August. As the summer wraps up, I’ll be spending time with family in Dallas and bringing pages in for the brand new Dallas play incubator The Aviary.

Amanda Keating: For my summer vacation I spent a few wonderful weeks out of town workshopping my play GO THAT WAY with the Williams College Summer Theater Lab. Highlights include a) kicking it all day every day with smart, cool, seriously talented students and fellow artists, b) seeing the play on its feet for the first time, and c) eating, hiking, and biking my way through the pastures, farms, and fields of Williamstown MA. Aside from these glorious days of writing and drinking copious amounts of beer in the great outdoors, I sweated my way around the city working my myriad jobs and lamenting my lack of air conditioning. It was a killer summer.

Who’s That Girl?:

Woah, Amanda Keating, who is that?  WELL, if you haven’t been paying attention, Amanda Keating is our newest, shiniest member.  LRR member Lauren Ferebee is off sowing artistic seeds south of the Mason Dixon line and will remain a member at large (#lrr4eva) so we needed another amazing playwright to round out the team.  We held an open call and received an astonishing amount of submissions all of which were really, really fantastic.  So after reading loads of plays and talking it through all signs pointed to Amanda and we couldn’t be more excited to have her!  Keep an out for more from Amanda, a #selfie interview could be on the horizon…..

ALMOST DONE:

Now, to round off this, our first ever MEGA ROUND UP!!! (don’t forget the voice) Let us reflect on the last two weeks of long form plays.

Kicking this cycle off was none other than Mariah MacCarthy, she brought us the beginnings of what will no doubt be an amazeballs play filled with plotting teen girls, a dead dog, magical You Tube videos and thousands and thousands of dollars.  Week two Jen Browne brought in an updated version of a play we’ve seen before that may or may not be about a mermaid, the jury is still out but let’s just say there were a lot of questions about mermaid rules and habits.

THE FUTURE:

The future, oh yes the future holds many things, eight more weeks of brand new plays, new LRR workshops, parties, adventures, and more, literally more and more.   Check in and often, you never know what we’ll be throwing down.  You don’t, you just never know, there may even be another MEGA ROUND UP!!!!!!!!!!!!!

4 LRR Playwrights Featured at Hell’s Kitchen Commons

This Monday August 11 at 7pm thanks to Hell’s Kitchen Commons, the West 45th/46th Street Block Association and the Irish Arts Center we’re serving up a theatrical smorgasbord to the people of Hell’s Kitchen.

Check out FREE readings from four of our lovely LRR playwrights:

Spirit Dust by Natalie Wilson
The Ferryman by Isaac Rathbone
Pity the Fools by Mila Golubov
Love is a Blind Squirrel by Jen Browne

Talented Actor Folk:

  • Mike Callaghan
  • Nick Cocchetto
  • Gabby Sherba
  • Peter Smith
  • Sarah Todes

Bring chairs, blankets and snacks to Matthews Palmer Playground.

The fun continues with on August 25th with another Hell’s Kitchen Commons Play in the park night featuring Fundamental Theater Project’s new play Sanctuary Park by Ben Holbrook

For more details visit: https://www.facebook.com/events/636623459778594/

See the Partners’ websites for more info on their Partnerness:

West 45th/46th Street Block Association

Hell’s Kitchen Commons is the program name sponsored by the Block Association

Mathew’s Palmer Playground

Irish Arts Center

Fundamental Theater Project

Guest Star Selfie #3

On March 4th, Lather, Rinse, Repeat had the ultimate luck to snag the delightful and talented Kevin R. Free to join the feedback fray for LRR playwright Jeremy Wine’s new play.   Despite being knee deep in a production of a new concert version of The Music Man, Kevin took the time to answer a few questions from Jen Browne.

1. Jen Browne: Last week you spoke briefly about working with the New York Neo-Futurists and on your website you credit them as “the people who helped me find my voice.”  Can you talk a bit about your time with them and how it’s shaped you as a theater maker?

Kevin R. Free: Being a Neo-Futurist was the most amazing challenge! It’s a grind – from writing all the plays, learning the plays, running the whole organization administratively, and navigating being in an ensemble in which we are all artistic directors. It made me a better theatre-maker. I make my own sound cues now; I know more about how to make or procure my own props; I am generally much better at making a way out of no way when there isn’t budget to do all the things I want. As the only writer of color in the company for a while, I had race and identity on my mind a lot, and I learned how to write about it. Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind  is still the item on my resume that gets the most comments when I audition. I am so grateful to have done the show.

2. JB: Trolling through your website I also found an amazing list of books that you recorded as audio books.   Are there types of books that are more fun to record?  Is there a book out there new or old that you would love to add your vocal talents to?  Do you listen to audio books or are you more of a book in hand type of guy? (If it’s against the law to say you prefer to read a book over listening to it if you record them, don’t answer!)

KF: Thanks for trolling my website! I really love my job, though sometimes it is harder than I expect it to be. I love a good story, so it’s hard to say which kinds of stories are my favorites. I can say that my favorite book I’ve ever recorded was a book called The Mushroom Hunters. It’s a non-fiction book about people who forage for mushrooms. There are restaurants in Seattle mentioned in the book that I cannot wait to visit. There’s an author named Mat Johnson whose books I LOVE, and I want to be his narrator. Really bad. Mat, hit me up. I generally don’t listen to audiobooks, but that’s only because I have a short attention span. My mind wanders easily…

3. JB: You also mentioned your work as the producing artistic director  for The Fire This Time Festival can you speak more about the festival, where you’ve been and where you’re going?

 KF: The Festival provides a platform for early career playwrights of African and African-American descent for two years. The first year, we produce 10-minute world premiere plays of the playwrights we’ve chosen; the second year, we produce readings of full-length plays written by those playwrights. I was a playwright in Season 3 and 4, and I became the Producing Artistic Director of the Festival in Season 4. At the end of March, we are taking 6 plays to Boston to Hibernian Hall, and we hired a company of four kick-ass actors (Chris Michael Burke, Tracey Conyer Lee, Sara Thigpen, and Chinaza Uche) to play the roles, all directed by Nicole A. Watson! I really love the work we do, and I love cultivating and working with this community of artists, and I am excited about the way the festival is growing!

4. JB: You are an actor, writer, director, and a producer.  What challenges, if any do you find wearing all of these hats?  Do you think your work in any of these roles is mirrored or reflected in any of the others?  Is producer Kevin different from actor Kevin who is different from writer Kevin?

KF: I think Writer Kevin reflects actor Kevin pretty well. I like to make broad choices as an actor until I am reined in by a director, and my plays tend to be a little larger than life. Producer Kevin is much more tired than any of the other Kevins, and doesn’t like the fighting involved with Producing.

5. JB: You seem to be a snappy dresser and I appreciate your use of the bowtie.  Do you have a go-to bowtie shop?  When it comes to personal style, is there a word that best describes you?

KF: YES. Thank you! I love shopping at Beau Ties Limited. beautiesltd.com. They are the best!

Kevin R. Free

After a great run at Two River Theater Company in Red Bank, NJ, The Music Man, featuring an all-African-American cast can also be seen this weekend at NJPAC.   Get your tickets here: http://www.njpac.org/events/detail/the-music-man.  And for more from Kevin R. Free visit his website kevinrfree.com. 

 

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Want to hear more from the writers of Lather, Rinse, Repeat?

You can! Just follow us on Twitter @LRRIT

If you do, you’ll get fun nuggets like:

 

And while you are at it, check out our playwrights and give them a follow. We would love to connect with you!

Brandon Marianne Lee

Isaac Rathbone

Jen Browne

Jeremy Wine

Lauren Ferebee

Mariah MacCarthy

Mila Golubov

Natalie Wilson

Tim Errickson

Only Tim Duncheon seems to have avoided the Twitter phenomenon (even though he wrote a short play ENTIRELY out of tweets, gotta love it).

Have a great week. Happy Presidents Day. Keep writing.