About Me

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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, December 30, 2006

Page 123

Well, a Meme is going around and Mr. Isaac Butler tagged me. Here's how it works.

1) Find the nearest book
2) Open to page 123
3) Type lines 6 - 8 of said book
4) Tag three others.

I shall now jump blissfully through these hoops.

The book on my desk is Selected Early Poems of Charles Simic. Page 123 presents a poem called "The Prisoner." Lines 6 - 8 of this poem are:

Her eyelids closed, her moist lips
Against my forehead, and the shadows of the trees
Hovering on the ceiling.

I shall tag:

James, Adam and Tom.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Nytheatre's People of the Year

The four gents (Kyle, Stephen, Gary and Bob) who make up Blue Coyote Theater Group are some of the People of the Year on Nytheatre.com. Good stuff guys.

Also, big props to CollaborationTown, a young company that's making waves.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Nytheatrecast: 2006 Year in Review

Take a listen... The Most Wonderful Love is mentioned by Mario Fratti.

Quite kind. Merry Christmas to all, and to all, a good night.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Nytheatrecast "Playing with Canons"

David Johnston, Tom Ridgely and I are interviewed by Leonard Jacobs on the latest nytheatrecast, concerning "Playing With Canons."

Listen to the podcast here.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Standards of Decency Extends!

First week of the New Year, we're back for a limited time. Tickets are available now.

Make seeing a bunch of nudity and blasphemy and violence your New Year's Resolution!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

The 50 Greatest Cartoons of All Time

Check this out. Awesome.

Rocky Balboa

I am officially ALL SIGNED UP to see that flick. I don't care who knows it.

Homo Domesticus: Notes from a Same-Sex Marriage

My friend and mentor, David Valdes-Greenwood, has huge news today. His book, Homo Domesticus: Notes from a Same-Sex Marriage, was released today in Hardcover.

David's short play Dream of Jeannie-By-The-Door appeared in the Humana Festival in 2005. A link to Baker's Plays edition of his play "Brave Navigator" is in the links section of the sidebar.

By David's book for a loved one, or yourself, today.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Looking Back on 2006

As a trip down memory lane (thanks to Brian Olsen for the idea) what follows are the first sentences of the first posts of each month of this year. A random assortment of snippets of thoughts. Interesting exercise or way to waste time at my desk? YOU decide!

“A gentlemen decided to berate two young people who did not give up their seat for an old woman.”

“Strange that during a season of real political crisis in this country, the supposedly liberal media is covering yet another Republican fiction ("John Kerry insults the troops").”

“Go see TRUTH, Mike Daisey's newest. Sounds cool.”

“Gone for the weekend then being sent to Baltimore most of next week for my day job.”

“Mixed feelings about this. I don't think I'm as disgusted as everyone else is.”

“Tonight is the final performance of The Most Wonderful Love!”

This is an important legal document.

“Wednesday was our first rehearsal and read-through of MWL, and it went swimmingly.”

“Recently reading Boo's blog... it occurred to me that it can be hard to make the distinction between theatre that speaks with raw honesty, and theatre that is artfully created and expressed.”

“I've been a bit remiss in discussing the "Rachel Corrie" issue.”

“Before I get to the union today, I'd like to send any readers over to Isaac Butler's passionate "gut response" to a NY Times piece about creative control issues between writers and directors. Here it is.”

“I tried this a while back, but didn't get much response. Never one to be cowed, I thought I'd try it again.”
...hm. What could that all have been about?

Monday, December 18, 2006

Standards of Decency Closes

Not sure yet if we're going to bring it back for an encore in January, but it seems possible.

Thanks to everyone who came out to see the work. We're all proud of it, and it seemed very well-received and worthy of the conversation it was meant to inspire.

Thanks, especially, to Kyle, Cat*, Matt and Joe, who put together my quickly written play with skill and verve. Made me look like I knew what I was doing. That's all a writer can ask for.

A couple of thoughts from the experience for both of my readers:

There's been a great deal said recently on the blogosphere about "Development Hell." Standards of Decency certainly was the opposite: untested, commissioned works, that were put on their feet, essentially as-written. Lots of imperfect writing, unneccessary beats, oddball moments, messiness. Speeches that could have been cut in half. It had tons of life in it. I wouldn't say anyone walked away feeling like they saw anything polished on the part of the writers...but polish certainly isn't the only virture.

I did talk to one actress who was wrestling with a play that she felt had language that felt intuitive and unclear and she couldn't make sense of each word. I, personally, love both writing that is careful and clean, and writing that seems to come from a place of impulse. Writing that is impulsive can be very difficult for an actor to parse, of course. It's a bit silly to think, though, that the playwrights job is to justify every word for an actor, or the audience, or a director, or a lab.

The goal of perfection often seems to be reductive: take out all that doesn't work, leave what is justified and proven correct and good, the rest is first draft impulse and meant for the red pen. Certainly makes for compact, direct, narrowcast plays and seem far more clear than my life ever has been to me.

Should our art surpass our thoughts or reflect them?

Friday, December 15, 2006

"Development Hell" with Mr Excitement

Great discussion on Mark Armstrong's blog about so-called "Development Hell." Also, The Playgoer chimes in here.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Standards of Decency Opens Tonight

I have it under good authority that we're looking at a sold-out run, or close to it. Best to get tickets immediately, if not sooner.

Last night I sat in on the dress and had my first look at the other eight plays in the evening. Just consistently wonderful, impactful, audacious work. Proud to be a part of it.

The plays speak for themselves, so I won't say too much.

Angels, the Isaeli-Palestine conflict, fundamentalism, dancing while crying, bruises, panties, drunks, prep school, Mickey D's, pissing on a bench, breastfeeding and nipple rings...Who could ask for more for under $20?

Monday, December 11, 2006

For the Holiday Season - Give to Theatre

As 2006 draws to a close and we're all in a giving mood, I'd like to suggest that you choose your favorite 501(c)3 theater company, preferably an upstart, independent-minded, ragged band of intrepid artists, and give them a charitable donation.

Think about this: throughout the year many of us give to Church, Universities, Public Television and Public Radio, political activism and causes like disaster relief and medical research. All terribly imporant, all in need of a few dollars of public help.

But, think about all the theater companies in NYC, Seattle, San Franscisco, Los Angeles, Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia (need I go on) that would not only appreciate a donation, but put it to very good use. That would take a one hundred dollar gift as truly important for not only their next show, but their continuing existence.

Here are a few suggestions:

Blue Coyote Theater Group - where I've lately lived and served. Fantastic group that lives at the Access Theater downtown. Produced my last few plays, as well as the work of David Johnston and David Foley. Any donations to them would be greatly appreciated. The smallest gift goes a very long way. Here's where to click to donate.

Inverse Theater - Kirk Wood Bromley is a writer extraordinaire who has just barely gotten his due from the mainstream press. His next production will be the breathtaking "The Death of Griffin Hunter." Want to give a gift that shows true support for the downtown spirit, give a gift to Inverse. Here's how.

Nosedive Productions - Not sure how you officially give a donation to this crew (don't see a link on the site) but I'm sure James Comtois would happily fill you in, or you could contact them on the website. Constantly producing great plays. Show James some love.

13p - Certainly making a lot of noise. Check out this sparkling list of some of the biggest talent in NYC. Donate here.

theatre minima - Not only is George the patron saint of the bloggers and a heady proprietor of deep thought, but also a producer of plays and one that is dedicated to paying everyone that works on his shows. Dig that? I thought you might! Here's how to show some support.

La Mama - 'nuff said. Donate through the link on their website.

The Ontological - Hysteric Theater - Never forget the little guys, like Richard Foreman. Wouldn't it be nice to vote with your dollar on this one? Say YES to art. Here!

www.nytheatre.com - This site covers more of the downtown New York Theater Scene in a day than most newspapers cover in a week. Now with podcasts! They publish plays! They do it all. And each year they cover every single Fringe show. Can't beat that? Read the Holiday Message from Martin Denton and learn how to support this worthy cause.

The Brick - One of the very best theaters operating in New York. Can't beat them. Each year a new festival in the summer, all year long, new, edgy work by the best of the downtown theater mainstays. They are, in fact, the real deal. Show Brooklyn the love.

The Subjective Theatre Company - Dedicated to $0.00 ticket prices. In order to pull that off, they might need a little support, no? Find how to donate on their website. Their motto? "Only You Can Prevent Expensive Theater."

So...that's a few of my thoughts.

I'd love to see other bloggers add to this list or readers make suggestions of their own. These are all New York Companies... where else should people be looking? Have a project that needs some holiday love? Let us know.

Let's put our money where our mouths have been all year. Let's give a little to many companies or a lot to one. Don't let yourself spend more on your iPod than you did on donations this year!

UPDATED! - David J sends these suggestions...

New York Foundation for the Arts does a lot, and also gives unrestricted grants to NY State playwrights:


NYC Performing Arts Spaces offers great website services to performing artists looking for real estate in this town, no mean feat - plus, we're launching a site just for theatre in a few weeks:


This organization is great - I've worked with them on some projects and they are the ones really looking out for small theatre groups in New York City.


Holocaust Deniers on Parade

It's not even worth being furious. Depressed, maybe.

Here's something to cure this sort of sickness.

Not all that familiar with Barak Obama?

You should be.

Take a listen and read over here.

Standards of Decency Opens Tomorrow

Shill, Freeman! SHILL! SHILL!

It'll be good. And fun. And weird. Like all wonderful things.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Tom Waits - Orphans

Phantasmaphile gave me Tom Waits new album for the b-day. Can't recommend it more highly. Best album I've gotten in years. Period.

Thursday, December 07, 2006


Today, I'm 31. Pearl Harbor Day. A day that shall live in infamy.

Going to see a taping of The Daily Show. Listening to Tom Waits. Took the day off work. Making some raw cookie dough with this kid and going out to a cheap lobster dinner tonight.

What could be finer?

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

"Rachel Corrie" to close

Well, there you have it. Uproar and hoopla before it happens, and in the end, a modest run of a modest one-woman show.

I'm curious: Do you think this play would have gone further had Rachel Corrie lit herself on fire and protested Israel on-stage? If the attempt to impact or incite passions was more direct, more unapologetic?

What accounts for this unceremonious exit?

Theatre Museum in London set to close

The Theatre Museum in London is set to close its doors on January 7th.

This would be, as they say, no good.

Read more about the campaign to save it here.

Thanks for the heads up from Ian on this...

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Naked and Objectified

Over at Middle of the Melon, hpmelon takes issue with my post seeking an actress for my upcoming short in a post called "Barely Reason." I think what she has to say is worth a look, for certain.

I would defend the play in detail, but my guess is that it speaks for itself rather nicely.

We did, for the record, find an actress for the role.

In the spirit of 'The Season'...

...and of Standards of Decency, I offer up this beautiful gallery of terrified children.

(Thanks to Phantasmaphile, who is adept at using the internet for it's true purpose: Finding Weird Stuff.)

Friday, December 01, 2006

This morning on the subway

A gentlemen decided to berate two young people who did not give up their seat for an old woman. Crowded train. He did a lot of Bible quoting at them at and everyone. No one loves that on the 4 train at 8:55 am.

Much to my surprise, it was touching. It's always nice to see someone bravely and eloquently standing up for being a decent person. No matter how uncomfortable it makes everyone.