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My beloved collaborators, friends and geniuses at IAMA won big at last night’s Ovation Awards in LA for our production of Jon Caren’s THE RECOMMENDATION.

Best Production & Best Actor (Intimate Theatre)

I couldn’t be more proud to have been the Artistic Director of this incredible group of artists for the last 2 seasons. This is the company’s first year winning at the Ovations, and it was amid a field thick with amazing shows. The LA Theatre scene just keeps getting more awesome.

Keep your eye on IAMA to see what happens next.

Betta Meta: THE BOOK CLUB PLAY

THE BOOK CLUB PLAY by Karen Zacarias is a comedy. It’s also super meta

So meta!

It features a book (“The Book Club” by Ana Smith) within a documentary (“The Book Club” by Lars Knudsen) all within a play (“The Book Club Play” by Karen Zacarias).

Creating this Russian Doll of a world is the challenge that I’ve been at with set designer Michael Locher & sound designer Matt Stines, along with the whole Center Rep team, for the past 2 weeks. We are deep into the process of design for our Feb 2015 opening.

I’m really excited about what we’re coming up with. The experience of the play will let audiences leap between worlds. In the play, they will see into the private life of the book’s author, they will see the making of the documentary and the documentary itself.

This “shifting lens” feels like the truest depiction of life as I know it. I see the world through face to face interactions, but also through my Facebook timelines and Twitter feed. I experience the news of our day from my own point of view, but also through the NPR interview and the Instagram post. Like standing in a three-way mirror at a department store, I see parts of my world and myself that seem impossible to catch sight of, and I love that. Because sometimes you just need to see for yourself if the jeans are really too tight, or if that tattoo on your back REALLY suits you, or if you simply look flawless all over.

A Richard Rutledge classic

I’ve often wondered if others have this hall-of-mirrors experience of life, and Karen’s play makes me feel in great company!

Link

http://kilbanes.com/weightless/

Way excited to be sitting in this week on the workshop of the Kilbanes WEIGHTLESS at Z Space. So cool to see this killer group of musicians under the direction of Kate and Dan creating rock music theater right now.

The fabulous Lisa Steindler of Z Space is making out fair city ground zero for just the kind of boundary pushing hyper-creative music theater.

 

One-Man Shows & the Brilliance of Alex Knox

In any one-man show, audience and performer face one another in an uniquely focused way. We have nowhere to look but at the performer. Whatever we desire of him — whether to be entertained or enlightened — is directed straight at him, while his expectations of an audience — laughter, tears, attentive ears — are focused straight at us.

Alex Knox has a particular gift for this kind of head-on performance. He never hides his gaze, and never hides from the gaze of the audience. He manages to always receive attention with grace.

In NO STATIC AT ALL, we have embraced this relationship by keeping the design and staging stripped-down. Alex is mission control — he is in charge of the theatrical space. He plays the records, he cues the lights. In this way, he can be completely engaged with his audience, responding in the moment to the ups and downs of their energy, as they respond to the ups and downs of his.

Working in Alex’s Orange County living room last weekend, we created a new ending to the show based on a recent experience that brought him a new understanding of this journey he had undertaken. I felt a sudden relief at the closure we had found — not just for the story, but for the experience described within it. It was as if I myself had been searching for the answers that Alex was seeking. That is his gift, and the gift I hope this show gives audiences.

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FB cover art - for TF compnay

NO STATIC AT ALL, Alex Knox’s one-man show that I directed & developed over the past year is on its way to NYC! We open at the NYC Intl. Fringe Festival on Saturday August 9 at 8:30pm.

Alex and I have crafted this 55 minute monologue from over 70 pages of material he wrote about his search for enlightenment and how it culminated in a rather other-worldly obsession with the rock band Steely Dan. The journey includes stops at untamed beaches in Kauai, West Village jazz clubs and a tiny town in Israel that hides an earthshaking relic.

I couldn’t be more excited to be working with Alex again, along with the incredible Tilted Field crew. My partner in crime Jacob Padrón, along with Roberta Pereira will be producing (in their time off from their work on The Public’s Shakespeare in the Park & Off-Broadway’s The Opponent, respectively). Our all-star design team is JiYoun Chang (lights) & Michael Locher (sets) along with special guest artist Paul Carey (costumes).

 

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San Francisco Playhouse at 450 Post Street

SF Playhouse has invited Annie and me to work on the Antigone Project with them this spring!

We are looking forward to being part of this beautiful season that features Julie Hebert, May Andrales, Aarons Loeb and Posner & many others.

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I will be directing Karen Zacarías’s THE BOOK CLUB PLAY in its West Coast Premiere at fabulous Center Rep in Walnut Creek, CA.

The play is a spot-on send-up of our politely fame-obsessed culture. A story about books, and the people who love them.

Opening January 30.

 

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http://tapmasterj14.deviantart.com/art/Turning-Heads-116990138

http://tapmasterj14.deviantart.com/art/Turning-Heads-116990138

I am working on a new adaptation of Antigone with Annie Saunders of The Wilderness, exploring “universal values” within the body politic and the body corporeal.

More details to come soon.

 

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If you would like further information on me or the projects, please email me at wolff@aya.yale.edu