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Matthew Freeman is a Brooklyn based playwright with a BFA from Emerson College. His plays include THE DEATH OF KING ARTHUR, REASONS FOR MOVING, THE GREAT ESCAPE, THE AMERICANS, THE WHITE SWALLOW, AN INTERVIEW WITH THE AUTHOR, THE MOST WONDERFUL LOVE, WHEN IS A CLOCK, GLEE CLUB, THAT OLD SOFT SHOE and BRANDYWINE DISTILLERY FIRE. He served as Assistant Producer and Senior Writer for the live webcast from Times Square on New Year's Eve 2010-2012. As a freelance writer, he has contributed to Gamespy, Premiere, Complex Magazine, Maxim Online, and MTV Magazine. His plays have been published by Playscripts, Inc., New York Theatre Experience, and Samuel French.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

Another quick set of questions

Since that was fun...

1. Are you, or have you ever been, religious?
2. What sort of dreadful thing made you want to go into theater (or another creative endeavor?)
3. Do you read poetry, and if so, who do you prefer?
4. Do you think blogging is useful?


parabasis said...

1) Yes. I was raised a Christian Scientist, although culturally my roots are definitely in my Judaism. I am not currently religious.

2) Nothing. As far back as I can remember, I wanted to go into theater. I do, however, remember my first "adult" play... it was St.Joan, put on by what was then known as the Folger Shakespeare Company. Philip Goodwin played the Daufin. I was hooked.

3) Not really. I should, but I don't. I loved my high school, but they were very bad at teaching poetry. If anything, I think they turned off a lot of kids to poetry by only (really, ONLY) teaching Robert Frost as poetry the entirety of Freshman year. I mean, Robert fucking Frost??!! I've read quite a bit of poetry, tho, and like Shakespeare, Lorna Dee Cervantes' "Emplumada" and I love love love Wilfred Owen.

4) I think political blogging is useful to political parties, if by use, you mean in a practical sense. I think the whole idea of the "netroots" might really be an epochal event in terms of politics in America, but I'm not sure yet. I certainly don't think my blogging is really useful to anyone other than myself. It helps me focus my thoughts artistically, and exorcise my thoughts politically, whihc kind of clears the cobwebs and allows me to actually do my theater work.

What are your answers?

kirabug said...

1. Are you, or have you ever been, religious?
Yes... not as much as some but certainly more than others.
2. What sort of dreadful thing made you want to go into theater (or another creative endeavor?)
The monster created by combining fear and imagination clawing at the inside of my skull.
3. Do you read poetry, and if so, who do you prefer?
Yes, but not very often anymore. Tastes vary - sometimes it'll be the classics, sometimes something new. Occasionally I still write.
4. Do you think blogging is useful?
Heckyeah. Of course, I've been blogging for over six years now.... Seriously, though, it's a quick and easy way to keep in touch with friends (hi Matt!) and at the same time it allows me to share with others my more creative side.

Joshua James said...

!) I started out a christian, vey religious, went to a church affiliated college - but got over it with rational thought and reason. Now I'm a buddhist - I started out one type of buddhist but moved on to another. the wonderful thing aboub buddhism is that, at its essence, it encourgages that kind of free thinking and independent exploration.

2) I got into theatre as an actor, and I wanted to do that in order to be someone else. I wanted to be someone else because who I was wasn't, at that time, accceptable. I later discovered that, as an actor, the more succesful actors got into actor because they wanted to get closer to who they were rather than get away from it. It was a valuable discovery. One that would inform later work in not just theatre but everything. I later discovered a talent for writing and found it to be a much more enjoyable pass time.

3) no. But I think that old school poetry, like ferlingety, can be valuable, but mostly I find most of the people that populate the poetry circuit to be people of lessor talent and ambition. I think most of the folks that have a taste and feel for it to find their way into literature and film work. I find most of the folks, today anyway, into poetry, to be self-masturbating jagoffs. except for Maya, of course.

4) blogging is wonderful. I used to make fun of people that kept journals, and then I started one and found the value in them. a blog is even more useful because it is open to others. Like a dofo, where you have to do pushups and situps every day, a blog keeps the writing muscles limber. It's a good thing if used correctly.

devore said...

1. Catholic
2. Sigh. High School Godspell.
3. I love the Beats, even if they were mediocre poets.
4.I find blogging fascinating. I don't do it, per se. I wonder if it will actually foster any kind of significant artistic cross-pollenation.

Zay Amsbury said...

1. Are you, or have you ever been, religious?

No. I was raised by liberal intellectuals. Every once in awhile they'd take me to a Unitarian Universalist Church on Sundays, or before Christmas, but that barely counts.

How do you get a bunch of Unitarians out of your neighborhood? Burn a question mark on their lawn.

2. What sort of dreadful thing made you want to go into theater (or another creative endeavor?)

Seeing "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woold" at Berkeley Rep when I was 15. That did it.

And also, in high school, my drama teacher let me write plays. We'd perform them at the end of the year at a full-on 250 seat theatre at UC Berkeley. I loved the culture. The process. The whole deal.

3. Do you read poetry, and if so, who do you prefer?

Not as much as I used to, but I only recently discovered Hart Crane. He's unbelievable.

4. Do you think blogging is useful?

Sure. Networking. Sharing information and ideas. Slowly breaking apart centralized media. Humor. Staying in touch with people.

I'm achieving what I wanted to do with my site -- keeping in touch with students, meeting people, getting some ideas out there.

It's a lot more work than I thought it'd be, though.

George Hunka said...

1. I was baptized Russian Orthodox but it didn't stick. At some times in my life I've thought seriously about religion, but now I find myself thinking more about the spirit: if I had to write something in the box, it would have to be "Metaphysician" these days.

2. Foreman's "Threepenny" at Lincoln Center and Pinter's "No Man's Land" directed by Peter Hall in 1976 confirmed what I'd suspected for some time, that I'd end up writing for theater in some way.

3. Nowadays I'm reading poetry more than anything else. I pick up The Divine Comedy every year or two, though I've also grown quite fond of Spenser lately: I also keep anthologies of John Donne around. There are one or two contemporary poets whose work I hold in high regard.

4. It's had its professional and personal value, in large part to clarify my own thinking about matters, and I've met some fine people this way.

Alison Croggon said...

1. No. I was baptised Catholic but was sent to Anglican schools. I became fiercely atheist at about seven.

2. Theatre has always been an accident in my life; I never planned to be involved in it. The first piece of theatre I ever saw, at about 14, was Jesus Christ Superstar. I thought it was amazing.

3. I read a lot of poetry. What I read depends on mood; big favourites are Sappho, Blake, Eliot and Rilke.

4. Yes.

Scott Walters said...

1. No. My family was, theoretically, Lutheran, and I did spend three years in confirmation class (can you imagine? 3 years, twoce a week for a total of 3-1/2 hrs, including two on Saturday morning). I left the Lutheran Church on Mother's Day, when the minister said in his sermon that homosexual men were caused by overbearing mothers, and I decided I'd had enough.

2. I'm not certain. I think it happened in 9th grade when I was in a talent show and a horrible play called "Learn, Baby, Learn." By 10th grade, I knew I wanted to be in theatre, and by the end of 11th grade I had talked the school and the city Parks and Rec department into letting me use the theatre for free and to fund a summer theatre devoted to 20th century American plays.

3. I read poetry very infrequently, alas. When I do, I like Robert Bly and W. B. Yeats.

4. Yes, I think blogging is useful, because it creates a sense of community. If you examine the major movements in the art world, they often occur when a group of artists have daily contact with each other.,Blogging allows this to happen across the miles. For me, it serves another purpose: I can float ideas and see which have legs, and which provoke disagreement or misunderstanding. The latter is particularly important, because I am prompted to make my language clearer and clearer. I hope to write a book in the next few years based on some of these ideas.

hpmelon said...

1. Yes. This story, is epic in it's insanity. Maybe when I am in NYC next we can meet and I can share what could be great fodder for a playwright.

2. I was raised by an artist, so maybe that. I got hooked young.

3. Sometimes. I recently read two collections by Beth Ann Fennelly that were fantastic.

4. Yes. For whatever reason, be it communication, information gathering, or information sharing. I love it for its unedited freedom, but I also find it scary. E-tone or blog-tone is a tricky thing. We try to superimpose our vocal habits into type and the results are mixed. My favorite bloggers are writers, because they have better mastery over this.

Adam said...

1. Was raised Catholic and was religious in the years before driving. Now I tend to be more agnostic with tinges of buddhism.

2. I was in play after play from kindergarten on. I kicked that habit late in college but when I started to write it came out as theatre.

3. My gfriend K has introduced me to a lot of poetry. I love reading her work and have been digging also Anne Sexton, Frank O'Hara, sometimes Ferenghetti and others who I forget.

4. I'm not sure if blogging is useful to me. I'll let you know. I like it.

Floyd said...

1. I am very religious. Don't anyone poke fun at my religion because then I will get mad but I won't ever mention it and you won't ever know I'm mad but I will be. And eventually I'll forgive you but I'll still be mad underneath it all and resentful.

2. The tight pants.

3. I love poetry, especially the kind made with any sort of magnet. I also enjoy acronyms.

4. I LOVE you blog community!! LOL!! WOO HOOO!!

MattJ said...

1) I was raised Mormon actually, but my family sorta dropped in when I was 12 or 13. Since then... not religious.

2) Being raised in upstate NY where there wasn't a whole lot of theatre going on, I remember my first longings were playing in the pit band at high school musiclas and wanting to be on stage. In my first year of college I got really interested in theory and dramatic lit., and directed my first play soon after. As soon as I directed that first play I knew I wanted to be a director.

3) Not as much as I'd like. But I read lots of beautiful poetic language in plays. And plays are their own sort of poetry.

4) Blogging is fantastic. It is a complete outlet for me to have the kinds of conversations I don't get to have regularly, and with an informed and passionate audience. It has helped me build a stronger sense of self as a person of the theatre. I more clearly know how I feel about the art I make and the art I want to see. And of course, the sense of community is fabulous and fills me with energy.