Saturday, July 21, 2012
The Adding Machine
Well, the big day is finally upon us. Opening night of The Adding Machine! Like an idiot, I've gone and overbooked myself today. Coffee with a friend I haven't seen in nine months this morning, nail appointment with some actor friends for our weekly "Get Focused!" meeting after that, and then we have a final tech this afternoon before this evening's show. As most tech weeks go, my apartment is a disaster, I'm down to my last clean pairs of underwear, and I think the only thing I have left in my pantry are some stale pretzel chips I bought two months ago.
I have cupcakes. God knows why, but I went on a cupcake bender this week. If Armageddon comes and anyone is sitting there fighting off zombies and whining, "Today was my birthday..." come on over. I got you covered. I've got enough cupcakes to survive a nuclear holocaust. I have so many cupcakes, I think I'm going to build my bunker out of cupcakes. It'll be like a tent fort. Except tastier. And thinking I can use the stale cupcakes as bricks in my survival shelter sure takes off the pressure of eating them before they go bad. Because I'm under a lot of pressure right now.
But back to today's BIG EVENT, it's opening night of The Adding Machine.
The director, Kevin, is pretty much the Tim Burton to my Johnny Depp. He called and I was like, "I'm IN!" and he said, "Wait, don't you want to know what parts you'll be playing." And I said, "No. I mean, yes, just because I should probably know what lines to memorize. But other than that, no."
For those not in Los Angeles, LA theater sucks. I mean, flat out stinks. I once was a voter for our big awards here in town and I cannot tell you how many eye gougingly bad productions are barfed up all over this city. It's no wonder everyone in Southern California backs away slowly when you mention you're doing a play. They are usually just an actor showcase in the hopes of getting some lousy casting director out to see you. They are filled with actors who really just want to be doing film.
But you know, once upon a time theater was considered an art. Crazy, I know! I swear I'm not talking madness! There are actors out there who actually only do stage work because * whispering* they actually like acting on stage. MADNESS!
And that's been the cool thing about a lot of our cast. We have a bunch of Broadway veterans and we have a production team that LOVES producing theater. The set and the direction and the lighting and the sound design... We actually did text work before we started blocking. For those of you normies, that means we actually sat down to figure out what the script was saying before we got up on stage to figure out where we were going to stand. Believe me, this is actually a luxury out here in the wasteland of Entertainment.
The play is not for everyone. It is most definitely not Singing in the Rain. The borders of reality are pushed in an attempt to say something important. Kind of like caricature artists. Hear me out. They exaggerate a feature and in the exaggeration, you know who you are looking at. It's the same thing with Expressionism and this play defined the Expressionist movement. If you're ever on Jeopardy, this is the play they will ask you about under the "Expressionist Arts for $1000". It has some deep things to say about predestination and humanity and our roles in society. And you know what? It is awfully nice to get to go diving in the deep end after hanging out in the kiddie pool for so long.
The Adding Machine
at GTC Burbank
July 21 - Aug 11, 2012
Friday and Saturday at 8 pm
Sunday at 3 pm
This Sunday is Pay What You Can