Over the weekend we wrapped up underground episode. This was a test on how to run a show for two weeks and I must say there was a lot to be learned but it is definitely worth it. First things first, the cast compose of both veterans and newbies with a short timeframe of two months to learn probably one of the most challenging work that some of them have been a part of. For many including myself it was jumping from one production to another that was a challenge however for others it was just coming in and beginning the task at hand.
This time around we utilized collaborating with makeup artist Andrea Blassingame to create the looks, set up radio time for interviews, bloggers, and paid advertising in the metro Philly to get the word out on the production. We also utilized the site which the facility used instead of going the eventbrite way.
It was scary but I had to see what we could do and the end result turned out to be what we wanted. Now we are gearing up for next year to actually take advantage of all we learned.
The beauty of it all was swing how no matter what RunBoyRunProduction still continues to grow as a family and in the end this makes for good business.
Since our beginning RunBoyRunProduction has believed that art is the best way to tell not only stories but how reality is affected daily but the average person. One of our most impactful stories has been “Bully” (performed here by Ra Wilson) which is a story about a young man that got expelled from school but as he tells it they thought he was the bully but it turns out that he was the one being bullied.
For many of us the story is relatable especially if you come from the 80s and 90s when it was always those of us that were nerds that were being bullied. I tell you from experience being bullied as a kid was not a happy moment for me. Whether it was done by high school jocks or just someone who though I was an easy target my terror as a child was often followed by rage and regrets. However as an artist I had an outlet and that was being able to write, act, dance or draw the need to have an outlet was important In getting through such pain.
Because art was my outlet as a child for so many things, I make it my duty to do such for others after all we all need someone to listen to our stories. As I said before Ra has been doing bully since its incarnation and has since grown as an actor doing films and becoming a playwright himself. So now as we go into our forth year Ra has decided to pay it forward and give the role to a young up and coming Quashawn White as he makes his stage debut.
Bullying is not a laughing matter and in this day in time it has taken on a new form with the days of social media that it’s panic and terror has been one that many of us can’t turn our eyes from. However what we can do is stand up and fight for those that that need a voice those that need and outlet that in the end will look to you and say thank you for showing me how to stand.. How will you stand up to bullying?
In every moment we often have to take steps that speak to us years to the day of actual doing. The stage was set black light no sound no movement but we stood in a booth awaiting words to begin the tunes. Jody and I looked at each other then she said play it. The track came on and a voice spoke. Out from the darkness walked a young lady tall thin but strong in stance.
The story had begun with a journey of engagement streaming between childhood to adulthood. She spoke of her times wanting to be free and in those moments the freedom was noticeable through leaps and bounds of a younger version in a tutu prancing with fun bringing life to the eyes that watched until they found moments within the story to tear.
In the mist of this we began to feel our own spiritual movement understand that this story has more than one meaning. In the end many say this as a gospel of not just a dancers life but all as the music and dim lights came outpouring cheers filled the room and three generations of one took a bow Justine understood that this wasn’t the dancers last dance…
If you didn’t know runboyrunprod is involved in everything. Last night was about the stage play #mysisterskeeper part of the #thinkcreateinspire festival with director writer Jody ‘Tru Story’ Austin assistant directors Tiffani Dean and Antoine K D Stroman. With an all woman cast covering powerful and emotional subjects, these women proved that #poetictheater is here to stay.
For Jody this was a dream come true as she took the moments of pain noticed in all women’s lives and made it a journey of sisterhood that could not be denied.
Covering matters of mental, physical and emotional abuse, self perseverance, body images, social awareness, equal rights and many more this play has answered the called that women have been waiting for and is the beginning of a journey that will go beyond the stage.
Take a bow ladies for the night is yours and the road has just begun.
What is talent ? Talent is something that is noticed before it ever hits the stage pound is something that is noticed at a young age. When the cast saw Darryl and Kylia come in to the rehearsal room it was an instant embrace after all this was a first time seeing them since June and July show. For new members to see them or should I say to hear them in a group chat was all they knew but on this day they would get the chance to see the talent that they possess on stage.
I couldn’t resist her look her emotions of being we connected from a distant window and I knew what she liked what she wanted what she needed a gentle hand a passionate hand someone that cares enough to take etchings filled with fabric apply them to her and allow her to show the world how beautiful she is from a window marked Macy’s…#
Week two was a good one as the UE cast began exploring the characters a little more. Beginning the session as usual,we had a discussion concerning how each person felt towards the character they would be portraying. For many they already saw the relation of how these characters can be someone in their lives. From utilizing life events many saw themselves as a mother loosing her child or a trash man or teacher talking to kids trying to help them onto a straight path. With the vision of stepping in these shoes life was able to be brought to these characters.
For the vets reprising roles was both easy and hard as it becomes a moment of generating that emotional felling back up but first it needed to be summoned through the memory of words to cast life once again.
In some cases it became more of a call to stepping up that would prove to be the challenge as it would be more so about them being able to lead and getting others to follow. However as the path is laid out seeing the emotion of all will prove to be the tops of the actors grind.
If there is one thing that we all know from experience,fitting in isn’t always that easy. In theater being able to fit in means more as it deals with having the ability to show fellow cast mates that you have what it takes to nail a line a character and all that within the first time they see you in rehearsal. The best part of this is when you take your last breath after the last line after the last action and you hear nothing but claps it means you have done what you came to do and you have now been initiated into the fold.
As we begin the new journey we took a totally different approach taking the time to show newbies a run through of what many did. It was helpful as it gave many of the cast members a chance to see how much they retained also it was worth seeing to know what needs to happen in the coming weeks as we freshin up.