Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Ramblin' Blog Entry

I’m amidst the “dialogue” with playwright Mac Rogers and am awaiting his answers to my quite nosy questions, and we here at Nosedive Central are organizing the first reading for The Adventures of Nervous Boy (A Penny Dreadful), which will take place sometime next week, depending on everyone’s schedules. In the meantime, I figured I would take this time to treat this page as a typical blog. You know, blather on about what’s been going on in my life for the past few weeks, what sort of music I’m listening to, that sort of trite stuff.

Okay, I’m not really listening to any music right now (my “Cherry Pie” ring-tone on my phone notwithstanding). But I’ll still blather.

* * *

In theatre-related news, Wendy Wasserstein died (as I’m sure you all no doubt know by now). Admittedly, I’m ignorant of her work. I’ve never seen nor read a play by Ms. Wasserstein. I know, I should be flogged and exiled from the theatre community, but since I’m already so on the fringe of the theatre community as it is, I doubt I’ll notice much difference between exile and integration.

However, I’m guessing it’s now time to get acquainted with her work.

Also, Patrick, a.k.a. Philucifer, a.k.a. Charlie Willis, sent me this link in the New York Times about directors protecting their work and suing others who “steal” their directorial input. The implication is that directors want to copyright their work. It’s an interesting can of worms to open, since a director works on material that’s copyrighted in someone else’s name (the playwright).

Legally, the only precedent I can think of in which a director’s work can be copyrighted is to protect the blocking/stage directions as choreography, since choreography can be and is protected under U.S. copyright laws. I brought this up to Pete, however, and he was mildly offended at the idea that all a director comes up with is blocking. Although I agree that there’s much more to what a director does than blocking, copyrighting the blocking and stage directions is the only way I can think of where there’s a legal model (i.e., copyrighting directorial work by arguing that the directorial work is blocking, blocking is choreography, choreography can be copyrighted). Anything else is a bit…murky and gray, since — despite what many may think — ideas can’t be given copyrights or trademarks (i.e., how can a director legally claim ownership to an actor’s motivation and, more to the point, how can said motivation be proven to be stolen?).

This is all the beginning of an interesting yet slippery slope. Bear in mind that I'm not wild about stage directors having constitutional rights or civil liberties to begin with. I'm pretty much against stage directors being given citizenship. But that's just me.

(Yes, I’ve received several angry letters and phone calls from the ACLU for keeping Pete in a cage in the basement.)

Finally, on the subject of theatre, I saw my first play of the year last week: Red Light Winter, playing at the Barrow Street Theatre, written and directed by Adam Rapp. I really dug it. It was right up my alley and Mr. Rapp does seem to share a kinship with Bug author Tracy Letts (although Red Light Winter is not nearly as violent as Bug). (Yes, I am also aware that another superficial connection between the two plays is that I saw them both at the same venue.) I recommend it to people who are emotionally troubled, feel increasingly alienated from the world and enjoy onstage nudity. Namely, people like me. Thanks to Marsha for getting me the free tickets!

* * *

As I had mentioned briefly in my “2006” Jamespeak entry, one of the items on my “to do” list was to spend one day watching all six episodes of Star Wars in order. Well, during MLK weekend, a bunch of us in Nosedive did indeed do that. Well, sort of (we basically crapped out during Return of the Jedi). Let’s just say that it is days like this that make me realize I should be doing something more worthwhile with my time. Like reading Ms. Wasserstein’s plays.

Still, it was fun, albeit a bit draining (I don’t quite recommend it, people. Watching 10-12 hours of Star Wars is kind of like forcing yourself to eat nothing but Pringles and Snickers bars for 10-12 hours). I’m still a fan of the movies (although I’m really glad to never have to see Episode I ever again) and I liked watching how Episode III (the last of the prequels) flowed rather nicely into Episode IV (the original Star Wars).

What, you were expecting tight, intelligent commentary on the movies? Hells no! Basically I like light saber “twirly-whirly” action and movies where shit blows up. The first movie I saw in the theatre was The Empire Strikes Back, so I’m one of those people who grew up with Star Wars as a staple of my childhood. There’s really precious little more that can be said on the subject.

Except that Yoda’s a pretty kick-ass light saber fighter. Even though he doesn’t win a single light saber fight in any of the movies.

I also got a sandwich, so January wasn’t a total washout (in terms of achieving goals).

* * *

Also, as mentioned in a previous Jamespeak, Cars Can Be Blue, the official Nosedive house band, had been on a self-made cross-country tour for the past couple months. However, their tour came to a grinding halt when their bus broke down in Ranger, Texas.

But here’s what really sucks about this: they’re still stranded.

According to their blog on their MySpace page, they’ve been working at the truck stop in Ranger where their bus broke down for the past month, so they can raise enough money for a new injection pump and thereby return home. They’re now asking for donations from fans and friends to help bail them out. So check out their page for the details (you do need a PayPal account).

* * *

And that’s really about what’s happening over on my end of the barnyard. Part One of my online dialogue with Mac should be up pretty soon.

Until then, don’t take any wooden nickels.

Loving onstage nudity,

James “Increasingly Alienated” Comtois

February 1, 2006


Post a Comment

<< Home

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.5 License.