Hey everybody, what is the use in having your own personal bitching blog if you don't write bitching things regularly? What kind of bitcher am I? :) Oh well, lots has happened since last I put something here. I returned from Atlanta more convinced...actually certain that I am willing and ready to make my next move (transition) to the good ole dirty south. I'm now in the midst of closing out my New York stuff clearing way for my new adventure. But closing one thing and opening another is not as easy as it may seem. I'm preparing for the reading of my play: "Miss Laura Maye of Harlem" on Sept 17th at the Ellington Room at Manhattan Plaza.
I thought "Miss Laura" wasn't going to ever see the light of day. This new play had been selected twice this year for prestigious play festivals (The Downtown Urban Theater Festival) and (The Manhattan Rep Summerfest) and for reasons beyond the control of the playwright were postponed or withdrawn. It's gone through five directors, over twenty actors and it still was ready. I guess that's the nature of the business. But, as surprises sometimes do happen, I was given another chance to put the 104 year-old woman in the spotlight. Thanks to AAPEX and Jaz Dorsey out of Nashville, a fabulous slot was offered to me. Of course being the altruistic individual that I am, I was trying to fill the slot with two short pieces from the Playwrights Workshop that I run. I had one short piece, but the other piece I selected writer was an actor and had got a new gig that precluded him from being able to attend the reading.
In conjunction with Life as a Lemon Productions, Jammit Productions, and AAPEX we are presenting this reading as a Union-sanctioned reading. This is very significant. That means that all the union actors that agree to read have first "rights" to the role should it be produced professionally. Wow, that's kind of scary. So that means that the casting is being done very carefully.
I have also finally gotten a novel directly to a publishing house!!! For four years, I had actually given up on even getting someone to look at it. And even though I was signed with a "top" black agent for three years, it never got beyond her secretary's desk for consideration (she confessed she wasn't particularly interested in the horror genre, but her assistant was a big fan of my writing) . That's another bitching story for later. It seems in my long career as an artist I have lots of bitching stories. :)
Anyway, I've given up teaching my screenwriting workshop.
Oh by the way, do you know there is only one real black theater left in all Harlem?! What the hell happened to the center of the black theater universe? Did you know that the white fellows who ran the Classical Theater of Harlem made their escape back to midtown taking the name of the theater with them. Can you still be a theater of Harlem out of Harlem? Hmmm... Did you know that there seems to be a panic among American black theater producer that the end must be near because August is dead? Did you notice that the "living" theater, which is what theater should be, is almost the "dead" theater. Most of the meager funding from black theater producers are being budgeted for the "classic" negroid plays. Where is the vibrant new stuff?