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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.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Rehearsing "When is a Clock" #3

First read-through with the full cast last night. Everyone did a wonderful job. This is a cliche, but it was far funnier than I was expecting. I'm glad we've got actors who can find those moments of humor in what is an otherwise rather dark play.

Kyle swore, before the cast, that he wouldn't speak to me because I would blog what he says. I am, in this moment, proving him right.

Still a few odd lines inconsistencies: legacy issues from old drafts. Got to hammer that stuff out.

The question becomes how much do I manage the writing at this point? The play, as originally written, is not told in a linear fashion. With each succeeding draft, the play has become more and more linear (although I'm sure it's only more linear to me) and I've been trying to maintain the original tone of the thing while attending to the realities of presenting something that has reveals, builds, and information that needs to be doled out in a careful way. I'm definitely noticing what flows and what is held back far more: the narrative of a journey or mystery story.

But it's not about mystery. Mystery is a tone, a genre. It's not content. It's form.

Of course, sometimes you just need to set the play and leave it in peace. One can fiddle until the fiddling becomes mistaken for work.

At this point, I'm sure I'll get a call when I'm needed.


David Johnston said...

I'm really enjoying your rehearsal diary. And if Kyle won't speak to you, just make things up. What's he gonna do?

Kyle said...

Freeman, you're fired.

And Johnston, you're cut off.

And Trumbull? Where's your script!

Oh my god...the humiliation...is unending...

Freeman said...

Good point Kyle: Trumbull showed up without a script. He's usually quite professional. I think he looks at me, these days, as something he has to do like laundry.

To be fair, though, some of the cast showed up with the wrong draft.

The solution (heed my advice Oh playwrights) is that I will be sending scripts by way of Susan, the Stage Manager. I know that the cast will, in fact, open her e-mails. They respect her. Not me.

David D. said...

I would like to add, for the record, that at the point I arrived, Playwright Matthew Freeman had already been drinking. How much, I'm not sure. And he neither gave a toast, nor had he written a letter from his heart to read to the cast before the read-through.

Anyone who is familiar with the customs of the Russian Theatre should recognize these as portentous signs of what is ahead.

David Johnston said...

At the first read-through of Oresteia, I threw an empty gin bottle at Speights. Winged him. Hey, I'm an artist.

Freeman said...

I had two bottles of Yuengling Beer. Out of respect for the Pennsylvania content of the play.

David D. said...

I just like the idea... nay, the FACT, that when a temperamental artist gets mad in a Blue Coyote rehearsal, and reaches for something to throw, it is likely to be an empty bottle of booze.

Kyle said...

Thank you, DelGrosso. That's now part of our official branding effort.

Blue Coyote Theater Group:
We Drank All Your Liquor

Philucifer [aka Charlie Willis] said...

I'm very sorry, but Nosedive has already copyrighted that phrase, and by just typing it here it means that Blue Coyote is underwriting our 2008-2009 season.


Our lawyers (and by "lawyers" I mean James) will be in touch. With a bat.