How do creatives work? Where do ideas spring from? How does a concept evolve? How is it finessed for display or public performance? What is drawn from life and what part does imagination play? How does one pay homage to the past yet still create something original?
In the lobby of a darkened theater on Monday I had insights into the way a talented young man approached his third play “Reverberation.” Reflecting on his time living and loving in NY, Mathew Lopez was deeply influenced by the 1959 novel “Another Country” by James Baldwin. In a small group of theater supporters, the playwright and the Asst Director, conversation flowed freely around how a play is developed, nurtured, tested, revised, tweaked and evolves, even after the curtain opens for a new season.
As many of you know, I am a visual person and love photography however I am also intrigued by the power of the written word. I like the way a story weaves into your thoughts, teases with a little tug, skips a beat and then lingers in your imagination to be replayed or reconsidered as new information is layered into the narrative.
With the collaborative process of producing a play it’s not an isolating experience like other forms of writing. Teams test the way the dialogue is developed and paced, the physicality of moving fluidly around the set is considered as timing is inevitably trimmed. The visual effect is enhanced by the interplay of props, costumes, light and sound as the weave their magic so the audience is drawn into the experience.