I guess we’re used to hearing about my various computers crashing, but this time my phone crashed, and with it all of my numbers and addresses!
If you’re a faithful (more or less) reader of The View From Here, this would be the perfect time to e-mail me your name/address/phone number (to firstname.lastname@example.org) so that I can make sure that I’ve got you entered into my hot new 3G/4G-coolest-phone-ever… which I am desperately trying to figure out how to make work, even as I type these words.
And, while you’re sending me your info… here’s another thought…
I’ve spent this summer doing about four new drafts on the new book: Acting at the Speed of Life, and I’ve got 99.9% of my typos squeezed out of the text, and the narrative trimmed down to fighting weight.
It expands on my workshop, Acting in the Classical Theatre, introduces some other ideas and exercises, and captures some wry and (if-I-do-say-so-myself) hilarious anecdotes and life lessons as well. The book (260 pp, give or take) is right on the brink of completion, and I am planning to have it self-published by Moliere's birthday, January 15, 2011, if not before. (Selling for $19.95 plus shipping.)
For a limited time, you can order a copy of the very first edition!
If this sounds like the sort of thing that you want for your personal library (or your acting class, or your cast…), then please mention that in your e-mail to email@example.com (I’ll even autograph it if you want!…or… not.) You don’t have to pay for it now, but if I know that you want a copy, I can adjust my numbers to the anticipated size of the order!
IN THE MEANTIME... in case you're not sure if it's something you'll want ... I am starting a NEW BLOG!!!
I am going to release selected chapters of the new book to my new blog! I'll be uploading a new chapter every week! Given that some of you are more interested in Moliere from the French perspective, than the Acting perspective, I don't want to drag you through a lot of my wonky Acting theories (actually, they're not wonky AT ALL! That's me feigning humility...), and so, when you send this ALL-IMPORTANT E-MAIL back to me(!), do let me know if you'd like to be on the list for the new blog! (Which you can find: HERE.)
I'll be putting chapters out in somewhat random order, and once the book is published, I expect I'll be using the new blog for other postings on acting and the theatre. (Once I start something like this, I generally find something to continue to talk about...!)
In OTHER publishing news…
In honor of my 15th script published through Playscripts, Inc, they have made me this month’s “Featured Playwright” in their newsletter that just went out to some 25,000 producers and theatre practitioners. In it, they include my bio and my answers to four interview questions, as follows:
Timothy Mooney has given tens of thousands of students their first introduction to Moliere through his one-man play, Moliere Than Thou. He has written seventeen iambic pentameter variations of the plays of Moliere, produced around the world. High School productions of Mr. Mooney's The Misanthrope, The Miser, The Imaginary Invalid, and Tartuffe have gone on to state finals in Massachusetts, Wisconsin, Virginia, North Carolina and Alabama. Mr. Mooney continues to present Moliere across North America, while teaching classical acting and performing his other one-man shows, including the sci-fi thriller Criteria and Lot o' Shakespeare!
What made you decide to become a playwright?
When I was an actor, I believed that it was the directors who got all of the power and control, but when I was a director I could see that that person was really the playwright... though, now that I'm the playwright, the life of an actor looks pretty good.
What's the best thing about being a playwright?
Stumbling onto the perfect word at two in the morning, that makes me howl with laughter as I write it, and then discovering, years later, that same word makes an audience, likewise, howl with laughter.Why have you made Playscripts the home for your plays?
I could see Playscripts leading the play publishing universe (sometimes kicking and screaming) into the current century, using the power of the internet, both as a distributive and an interactive force, without skimping on the books-in-hand that are such a tactile joy.
What are you working on now?
When not on tour performing Moliere Than Thou or Lot o' Shakespeare, I'm working on an acting book, (Acting at the Speed of Life) aimed at supporting actors who are tackling classical material.
For one scene, I requested a volunteer for the sexual harassment scene of Measure for Measure, and a girl volunteered, noting “What’s the difference? I get that at work every day!”
April and her daughter Amber came down to see that show, and Amber ran the video camera so that we could capture some fresh video which would feature the new costume. (captured on a new video camera, purchased after my last camera was stolen in Minneapolis…!)
We drove back to Chicago right after that performance, and I got back just as the Chicago Fringe was getting underway, with the opening night party that same night!
The Chicago performances were thinly attended… On the one hand, I didn’t know who in Chicago to invite who hadn’t seen the show already! And then when I saw the conditions of the auditorium, with audience seated on boards stretched across cinder blocks in an un-air-conditioned room (I thought of this as the Theatre Gulag!), I was hesitant to promote it. Even so, several close friends came, including Michael Herzovi, who I hadn't seen since college, and my friend, Linda, from Dramatic Publishing.
I managed to get through the festival without doing too much harm to my dignity, with audiences of 8, 9, 5, 15 and 20 over the five performances, and got packed and onto the road the very next day with the official start of the fall tour.
And with that particular departure, I said au revoir to Dad, who, by the time of my first return, would be on the road himself. After 48 years in the same house, he was moving to Norfolk, Virginia, where he now lives with my sister, Maureen, and her husband, Tim. It’s the end of an era…
First stop: Detroit, and dinner and a movie with Isaac.
Then, on to Steubenville, Ohio, where I would be performing Moliere Than Thou, and doing workshops with the students, who were working on a production of my version of Bourgeois Gentleman.
The show was a blast. The theatre was almost packed, with a group of students that had bussed in from about an hour away. The video doesn’t quite capture the electricity of the event, (which was so edgy that there were a couple of walkouts during the Tartuffe scene), but there was one very memorable ad-lib sequence (below), when I apparently stumbled across a reviewer while climbing through the audience.
The workshops the next day were almost as good. I did an hour in the afternoon about “the business side” of acting, followed by Acting in the Classical Theatre, which seems to have significantly improved, after all of the time that I’ve spent on the book this past summer. The actors in Bourgeois Gentleman were listening very attentatively, and we did a little bit of extra exploration with monologues and scenes from that show. One of the exercises went so well, that I immediately went back to my computer and added a chapter to the book, while integrating the exercise into my workshop lineup. (It was one of those scenes where the actors speak in fragments of lines of verse, with several one or two-word lines combining to make up larger lines, and four actors working together to create order in the midst of chaos.)
I got the chance to try out that new material almost immediately, as my next stop, at Wake Forest University, was bringing me in for workshops only. They, too, were producing a Moliere play, though not one of my scripts, and I did a French class, a Theatre workshop and a combined Life-of-Moliere workshop.
They put me up in the poshest hotel I think I’ve ever been in. It was a grand mansion.
My host pointed out at least twice before the final workshop that I would have access to a dressing room, so I took that as a sign that they would really like this workshop done in costume. Given that I’d already given much of my Life of Moliere material to the French class earlier on, I donned some of the Moliere costume for the evening workshop, and added as much performance to this event as I had stored away in my memory. All seemed pleased and even the director of the Moliere production, who’d chosen some OTHER translator for her text, seemed to appreciate the stylistic direction that my workshop was promoting.
I headed home the next day, making it as far as Indianapolis, where I met up once again with the host of the Fringe Festival, who was now engaging in serious conversations about hosting all four of my one-man shows as part of a two week One-Man-One-Man Theatre Festival this coming May. It also happened that a big booking conference was going on in town, and I stuck around the next morning, to hang out in the exhibit hall for an hour or so, running into a bunch of people that I’d met on the booking conference circuit.
Back home. I had a show at Dominican University the next day, which was very well received. The French professor ran the video camera, so I came away with a bit of footage on that one. And, like many of my recent bookings, I was actively promoting the Shakespeare show as an effective follow-up for next year.
That weekend the old homestead seemed quiet and empty. I was working on getting the Shakespeare show back up to speed, and putting together a photo session. April took pictures of the new show (the product of which you’ve seen scattered throughout, above). A few weeks ago, I’d gotten an offer from Marcus Fernando, a good friend from the Canadian Fringe circuit several years back, that if I needed any help with photoshopping, that he’d be happy to contribute his talents… and so I sent to him some of the best shots that April had captured, and he almost immediately turned around the PERFECT composite photo below.
Off again… this time to St. Joseph, Missouri, with performances of both Moliere and Shakespeare in a single night! Last March, with the very first public performance of Lot o’ Shakespeare, I'd also done both, feeling extremely apprehensive, but LoS had grown a lot since last March, and I was confident enough that either show might stand on their own.
But together…? I thought their heads were going to explode!
MTT went about as well as some of my best performances, with an audience of perhaps 150 responding raucously, and a standing ovation at the end. LoS was almost as successful… with several t-shirts sold after the fact, and enthusiastic students coming up to shake my hand.
The next morning, I was pushing west, with a stop in Kearney, Nebraska, droping in on a friend from UN-Kearney and then on to Denver, CO, to check in with friends from DU, all of whom continue to talk about wanting to book another show.
I’ve had a bit of down time before my Monday, October 4 show at California Lutheran, and holing up in Salt Lake City, Fresno and L.A., I've managed to do some final prep-work on “The Book”.
Okay, now that you’ve read all the way through to the end… don’t forget your assignment from the beginning of this newsletter:
Send me your contact info (address/phone to firstname.lastname@example.org), and indicate if you’d like to order a copy (or copies) of the new book, or to be added to the new blog list!
Miles on the Escape: 36,000
Temperature: 90s falling to the 50s
Discoveries: I was actually relieved that my phone crashed, as finally I could get a phone that wasn’t dependent on Palm Software, which enabled me to get the very flashy Evo! * The real entertainment value of farce comedies performed in verse is seeing just how, even in the very formal structure of verse, riotous chaos can ensue.
Next performances: California Lutheran University, 10/4; Rogue Theatre Festival, 10/5
On the I-Pod: Kate Nash, Shakira, The Killers
Timothy Mooney Repertory Theatre Tour Schedule
(Available dates in CAPITAL LETTERS; Already-booked dates in GREEN; Pending bookings in PURPLE) )
10/4 California Lutheran U, Thousand Oaks, CA
10/5-7 CALIFORNIA / OREGON
10/8 Oregon Theatre Arts Association, Cannon Beach, OR
10/8-9 OREGON / WASHINGTON
10/10-11 WASHINGTON / OREGON
10/12 North Idaho College, Coeur d’Alene, ID
10/13 IDAHO / MONTANA / UTAH
10/14 UTAH / COLORADO / MONTANA
10/15-16 WYOMING / SOUTH/NORTH DAKOTA / NEBRASKA
10/10 U-Wisconsin-GB, Green Bay, WI
10/20 WISCONSIN / ILLINOIS
10/21-22 ILLINOIS / INDIANA / MICHIGAN / IOWA
10/23-24 INDIANA / MICHIGAN
10/25 Saginaw Valley State University, Saginaw, MI
10/26 Northern Kentucky University, Highland Heights, KY
10/28-29 PENNSYLVANIA / NEW YORK
10/30-31 NEW YORK / NEW ENGLAND
11/1 NEW ENGLAND
11/2 Gettysburg College, Gettysburg, PA
11/3 NEW JERSEY / DELAWARE / MARYLAND / DC
11/4 Virginia Intermont College, Bristol, VA
11/5-6 West Virginia Theatre Association
11/7 SOUTH CAROLINA
11/8 Columbia College, Columbia, SC
11/9-10 Spartanburg Day School, Spartanburg, SC
11/11 Francis Marion University, Florence, SC
11/12-13 SOUTH CAROLINA / GEORGIA / FLORIDA
11/14-15 TENNESSEE / ALABAMA / MISSISSIPPI
11/16-17 ARKANSAS / LOUISIANA
11/23-24 OKLAHOMA / KANSAS / MISSOURI / IOWA / ILLINOIS
1/19-20 MISSISSIPPI / ALABAMA
1/21 Southeast Oklahoma University, Durant, OK
1/22-23 ARKANSAS / LOUISIANA / OKLAHOMA
1/27-30 Texas Educational Theatre Association, Houston, TX
1/31-2/1 LOUISIANA / MISSISSIPPI / ARKANSAS
2/2 ALABAMA / GEORGIA
2/4-5 Highlands Little Theatre, Sebring, FL
2/8-10 GEORGIA / TENNESSEE / NORTH CAROLINA
2/25-3/1 Alabama Thespian Festival/Randolph School, Huntsville, AL
3/2-6 SETC, Atlanta, GA
3/7 TENNESSEE / KENTUCKY
3/8 Shepherd University, Shepherdstown, WV
3/9-10 WEST VIRGINIA / OHIO / INDIANA
3/10-13 Pathways to Successful Living Seminar
3/15 Monmouth College, Monmouth, IL
3/14-17 MICHIGAN / MISSOURI / WISCONSIN / ILLINOIS / OHIO /INDIANA
3/18 U-Penn-Fayette, Fayette, PA
3/19-22 PENNSYLVANIA / NEW YORK / NEW ENGLAND
3/23-24 NEW JERSEY / DELAWARE / MARYLAND / DC / VIRGINIA
3/25-27 VIRGINIA / NORTH/SOUTH CAROLINA
3/28-31 GEORGIA / FLORIDA
4/1-2 GEORGIA / ALABAMA / TENNESSEE / MISSISSIPPI
4/3-4 MISSISSIPPI / ARKANSAS / LOUISIANA / MISSOURI / TEXAS
4/5 Texas Wesleyan University, Ft. Worth, TX
4/5-8 TEXAS / OKLAHOMA
4/9-11 KANSAS / MISSOURI
4/12-13NEBRASKA / IOWA
4/14 Saint John’s Prep, Collegeville, MN
4/15-16 MINNESOTA / WISCONSIN
4/17-18 NORTH DAKOTA / SOUTH DAKOTA / COLORADO
4/19-21MONTANA / IDAHO / UTAH / NEVADA
4/22-25 WASHINGTON / OREGON
5/1-3 NEVADA / ARIZONA / NEW MEXICO
5/4-6 UTAH / COLORADO
5/6-9 TEXAS / OKLAHOMA
5/9-13 LOUISIANA / ARKANSAS / MISSISSIPPI / ALABAMA
5/5-15 Indianapolis, Indiana
5/19-29 (est) Orlando Fringe Festival
6/20-26 American Association of Community Theatre, Rochester, NY
8/25-10/9 University of Central Oklahoma: Directing “Tartuffe”
10/11 KANSAS / NEBRASKA
10/12 COLORADO / WYOMING
10/13 COLORADO / UTAH
10/14 (N) NEVADA / UTAH / IDAHO
10/15-16 (N) CALIFORNIA / OREGON
10/17-18 OREGON / WASHINGTON
10/19 IDAHO / MONTANA
10/20 MONTANA / WYOMING
10/21 NORTH/SOUTH DAKOTA / NEBRASKA
10/22-23 MINNESOTA / IOWA
10/24 IOWA /MISSOURI / MINNESOTA / WISCONSIN
10/25 MISSOURI / WISCONSIN / ILLINOIS
10/27 ILLINOIS / INDIANA
10/28 INDIANA / MICHIGAN
10/31 INDIANA / OHIO
11/1 KENTUCKY / OHIO
11/2 KENTUCKY / TENNESSEE
11/4 TENNESSEE / WEST VIRGINIA
11/5 WEST VIRGINIA
11/6 WEST VIRGINIA / PENNSYLVANIA
11/7 PENNSYLVANIA / NEW YORK
11/8 NEW YORK / NEW ENGLAND
11/9 NEW ENGLAND
11/10 NEW ENGLAND / NEW JERSEY
11/11 NEW JERSEY / DELAWARE /MARYLAND / D.C.
11/15 VIRGINIA / NORTH CAROLINA
11/16 NORTH/SOUTH CAROLINA
11/17 SOUTH CAROLINA / GEORGIA
11/18-20 GEORGIA / FLORIDA
11/24-27 Thanksgiving Break
11/28 GEORGIA / ALABAMA
11/29 ALABAMA / MISSISSIPPI
11/30 Louisiana Tech, Ruston, LA
12/1-4 ARKANSAS / LOUISIANA / TEXAS
12/5-6 NEW MEXICO / ARIZONA
1/2-2/25 GUEST ARTIST OPENING
2/27 WASHINGTON / OREGON or KANSAS / COLORADO
2/28 OREGON / CALIFORNIA or UTAH / COLORADO
2/29 CALIFORNIA or NEVADA
3/4 NEW MEXICO
3/7 TEXAS / LOUISIANA
3/8 LOUISIANA / MISSISSIPPI / ALABAMA
3/9 ALABAMA / GEORGIA / SETC
3/15 SOUTH CAROLINA
3/16-17 NORTH CAROLINA
3/18 NORTH CAROLINA / TENNESSEE
3/19 TENNESSEE / GEORGIA
3/20 ALABAMA / TENNESSEE
3/21 ARKANSAS / MISSOURI
3/22 ARKANSAS / OKLAHOMA / MISSOURI
3/23 NEW MEXICO / KANSAS / COLORADO
3/26 COLORADO / UTAH / WYOMING
3/27 UTAH / NEVADA
3/28 NEVADA / IDAHO
3/31-4/1 WASHINGTON / IDAHO
4/3 IDAHO / MONTANA
4/4 MONTANA / WYOMING
4/5 MONTANA / NORTH/SOUTH DAKOTA
4/6 NEBRASKA / MINNESOTA / IOWA
4/7 IOWA / MISSOURI
4/9 MISSOURI / ILLINOIS
4/10 ILLINOIS / KENTUCKY
4/11 KENTUCKY / INDIANA
4/12 INDIANA / OHIO
4/13 OHIO / WEST VIRGINIA
4/17 MARYLAND / DELAWARE / D.C.
4/18 NEW JERSEY / PENNSYLVANIA
4/19 PENNSYLVANIA / NEW YORK / NEW ENGLAND
4/20-23 NEW ENGLAND
4/24 NEW YORK
4/25 NEW YORK / PENNSYLVANIA
4/26 PENNSYLVANIA / OHIO
4/30 INDIANA / ILLINOIS
5/1-2 ILLINOIS / WISCONSIN
5/3 WISCONSIN / MINNESOTA