This fall I'll be working with a very talented--and very funny--young musical theatre writer, Billy Reece, on his new musical political satire, Wally Weasel's GOP Jamboree. I'm looking forward to diving in to this fantastically over-the-top mash-up of political extremism, family dysfunction and American theme park culture with Fordham University-Lincoln Center students and staff! Tickets and more information HERE.
I'm excited to have been invited to return to Kent State University July 26-28 to lead a directing workshop for South Korean students taking part in the Porthouse Theatre International Academy. I led brief 3-hour session last summer, and I look forward to having an expanded 3-day period to work with these amazing young artists!
Throughout the three-week program, PITA students will experience life on an American college campus; take classes in dance, acting, directing and voice; strengthen their language skills through ESL classes; and and observe rehearsals of a Porthouse Theatre production. I'm so pleased to be a part of this unique experience.
I'm excited to be continuing "Doctors in ACTion," a program I created in collaboration with CWRU and University Hospitals for 1st year medical interns, beginning this Wednesday.
Each spring for the past four years I've had the opportunity to work with 30-40 young doctors from across the country--and the globe--as part of their clinical skills training. Using activities ranging from simple sound-and-movement exercises to Viewpoints we explore how the terms, ideas and techniques we use in theatre can help the interns be more present and open; be more capable, holistic, “extraordinary” listeners; use simple scene analysis techniques to help respond to impulses and successfully accomplish their "objective" in any situation; and employ empathy as a part of effective communication.
I always love blending the Arts and Science in this way. It's such a unique collaboration, and like all good collaborations we all come away surprised and inspired by each other.
I'm honored to be directing the premieres of several plays commissioned by Cleveland Play House from its Playwrights Unit and other affiliated writers. They are: Two Joans by George Brant (Grounded, Marie & Rosetta), CPH RAW by Eric Coble (The Velocity of Autumn), and Faye Sholiton, Artistic Director of InterPlay Jewish Theatre, and Dramatist Guild Regional Representative . A total of ten playwrights' work makes up The CPH Centennial Plays, a collection of short plays exploring the Play House's first 100 years to be performed as part of the Centennial Celebration Weekend.
Two Joans is inspired by the true story of two young actresses, one Swedish and one British, who survived torpedo attacks on their ships as they traveled to Cleveland to study and perform Shaw's Saint Joan at CPH during WW II. CPH RAW is a hilarious and highly physical satire which imagines the ups and downs of CPH's last twenty-five years as a WWE-style smackdown--with a happy ending for all. Faye Sholiton has written ten 60-second transition scenes which seamlessly connect the individual plays, using moments of CPH history--real and imagined--ranging from the impact of childrens' theatre programs on one family during the depression, to a seven-year-old Joel Grey's (nee Joel Katz) audition for his first acting job CPH, to what the company's founders might think of its current status as community touchstone and Tony Award recipient.
For information on FREE performance times for The CPH Centennial Plays check out THIS article about the CPH Centennial Open House (which I'm also producing...!).
Over the past 2 years I've worked with Editor Coleman A. Jennings on the new anthology Steven Dietz: Four Plays for Family Audiences, and was thrilled to contribute a biographical essay as the book's introduction. Though Steven Dietz is one of America’s most widely produced and published contemporary playwrights, this is the first anthology of his plays for youth and families. The collection includes: The Rememberer; Still Life with Iris; Honus & Me; and Jackie & Me.
The book is now available for purchase Amazon.com.
The full essay can be read on the University of Texas at Austin Press' website by clicking the "excerpts" tab of the book's webpage.
Today Artistic Director Laura Kepley, Managing Director Kevin Moore, and the staff of Cleveland Play House, America's first Regional Theatre, announced our historic Centennial Season!
To add to the excitement, I had the pleasure of working over the last several weeks with our CWRU/CPH MFA Acting faculty and students as I directed and "Corey-ographed" (see what I did there...?) scenes and songs from four season shows, performed to a packed house as part of the Season Announcement event: The Crucible, Little Shop of Horrors, Rebecca Gilman's Luna Gale, and Steel Magnolias.
It's been an honor and thrill to be a part of the team involved in selecting--and unveiling!--this season of bold, thrilling, necessary, relevant theatre.