BONEYARDS at the MAM

 

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Hey NYC,

A quick post to let you know Boneyards tix are now onsale.  3 shows only, get ’em while they’re hot. Only 20 seats per show.

http://morbidanatomy.bigcartel.com/product/boneyards-there-s-a-little-taphophile-in-all-of-us

Happy New Year,

Jeff

 

Jeff Scratch Fever on 1/12

I’m thrilled to have been invited to give a brief performance followed by Q&A at Philadelphia Live Arts‘ first ever Scratch Night at the Live Arts Brewery (LAB) on Thursday, January 12th at 7pm and I would love to see you there.

Scratch Night invites audiences into the artistic process and plays a key role for artists who are testing, experimenting and building new ideas.  I will present a portion of my 2011 Philly Fringe show Beautiful Zion: A Book of the Dead as I continue to develop it for future productions in Philadelphia and New York City.

You might know the show was originally staged in the nontraditional space that is the Blue Grotto, artist Randy Dalton’s blue-lit wonderland in the coal cellar of the 1851 former Friends meetinghouse that is today the Community Education Center in West Philly. I could have seated 40 but I capped it at 16 to keep it intimate and participatory for the audience:

My question is, how can the show be modified to be performed on a traditional stage without losing its magic and intimacy? How can it be performed not for a max seating of 16 but a max seating of 100?  Doable, or should this thing stay in the basement, wherever that basement may be? Come help me find out.

Read more at livearts-fringe.org

or at broadwayworld.com

or at Philadelphia Gay News.

 

Plays & Players Ouija Log – 11/6/11

Plays & Players playwright-in-residence Jeffrey Stanley holds a seance using a Ouija board and contacts Mala.

I was delighted last night to hear again from spirit MALA during our Ouija session that was part of my Plays & Players playwright-in-residence presentation. I began with a little shtick I wrote just for the occasion, then called for volunteers, BZ:ABOTD-style, and moved us all across the threshold from the Skinner Studio stage into Quig’s Pub where we all stood around a table watching the two volunteers try their hands at my antique William Fuld original Ouija board. Our goal was to contact one of the theatre’s 3 resident ghosts.

At first, lots of jibberish despite multiple partners and switch-offs and trying to get the board warmed up. There were a few early highlights, like my asking, “Look, is there anyone there who just wants to cut the jibberish and talk to us in plain English using simple words?”

The response was a swift NO.

At one point it blurted out OZ which got lots of oohs and aahs. Later one of the volunteers emailed me that she got home and flipped on the TV only to see that The Wizard of Oz was indeed on that night.

But whenever it was my turn to switch in with a partner it shot back and forth from M to A to L to A to M to A, sweeping a wide arc back and forth across the board nonstop. It wouldn’t answer any other questions. It was, like, in this catatonic state. I’d get up and let a new partner take over, but 10 minutes later when it was my turn again it’d shoot back to M A L A M A L A. As obvious as it seems now (duh) I kept guessing at names…”Are you Mama?…Alam? … Lala?”

Thankfully someone chimed in, “My guess is it’s a child.”

“Are you a child?” I asked the board. At that she finally stopped the chant and went to YES.

“You’ve been trying to talk to me all night. Do you know me?”

YES

“Have we met before?”

YES

“What’s your name?”

MALA

“Oh! You’re Mala. From my show!”

YES

“You’re the little girl.”

YES

(to the crowd) “This is a little girl I met during my show. She was killed by her mother. (to Mala) You followed me here from the Blue Grotto to Plays & Players?”

YES

“Are you in the room with us?”

YES NO YES NO YES NO (this indecision was also evident during her previous session with me; the personality and her reluctance or uncertainty with her state seemed consistent, as did her childlike repetitions of “MalaMalaMalaMala” and previously “MomMomMomMom” for emphasis)

“Your mother killed you, right?”

YES NO YES NO YES NO

(In our previous conversation on 9/15/11 her discomfort with discussing the details of her death (stabbed by her mother) and her insistence that she has forgiven her, felt consistent again with her current indecisive answers. Previously her discomfort was indicated by the constant use of the infinity sign when she wasn’t sure how to answer; tonight it was the YES NO YES NO maneuver.)

I got tired of monopolizing the board so I stepped away for a slice of pizza while two others continued the chat. I told them Mala was a lonely little girl who meant no harm and to chat with her for a few minutes. I’m not sure of the outcome but I know their chat with her was brief because the board was soon abandoned. People kept admiring it and discussing it but no one would dare to use it. I offered to use it with someone but no one would take me up on it. Everyone seemed too spooked by the Mala thing.

So, not exactly an earth-shattering session but a good experience overall and I was happy to chat with my otherworldly pal Mala again. Most disappointingly no contact was made by any of Plays & Players’ supposed ghosts. Maybe they’re just a legend…

TO BE CONTINUED.