Megan's Head

A place where Megan gets off her head.

Tag: Lost Property (Page 1 of 2)

Lost Property – a virtual, live, global connection

I could feel it in my body the whole week and finally, when Jaci de Villiers (friend and director), Zane Gillion (co-actor) and Gys de Villiers (hero and stage directions reader) met on Zoom for a rehearsal of my play Lost Property I freaked out. My technology was horrible (internet woes), I struggled with my glasses and the screen, I couldn’t work out how to sit, or what angle, and I was a proper mess. Our rehearsal dissolved and I was scared and horrified. What would happen on the day, Saturday, when we would do a live reading?

I really had to think hard about what was wrong. Of course, it was more than one thing, but one of the biggest things was that my body and heart were remembering and wanting to be in the physical world of Jersey City, performing live, at a live festival. That’s what was going to happen pre-COVID. The other thing, a big thing, is that the play is one of the most prophetic pieces of writing I have made and it does make me all strange and weird, but that is a story for another day.

Our rehearsal on Friday went really well – I had (temporarily it turned out) sorted out my internet connectivity, had given myself a big fat pep talk and I reminded myself why I wanted to do this work in the first place.

And so on Saturday at 6pm we went live. Yes I froze a couple of times. No, it wasn’t serious. Yes I had all the usual performer fears and nerves. No, they didn’t get in the way of delivering our connection, characters and intentions. And we performed our hearts out, on Zoom, at a virtual, international festival of political work. We had an audience. We had positive feedback. And it was amazing.

Obviously I still want to get to Jersey City to do a proper run. Obviously I would love to do a run in South Africa. But being part of this festival is amazing. A global, network of theatre and art people from all over has been built and brought together by artistic director of the Jersey City Theatre Centre, Olga Livina, and it is amazing. Check out the website. See what’s on offer. Free talks, amazing shows from around the world. Connect, engage, celebrate VOICES from those who struggle to speak, in politically ravaged countries from around the world.

 

Lost Property in Jersey City

Lost Property found a home last night, at the Jersey City Theater Center and I am exhausted, happy, proud, excited and hopeful about this play. Olga Levina, Catalina Florescu, and your team you were so welcoming, encouraging and supportive. It was also a privilege to be in great company with the other writers.

This is the thank you post. Every single person who gave $ for me to get here, both through Thundafund and around it. Each $ and R made it possible, and it was so worth it. Can’t list you, but I know who you are. Love you all madly.

Jaci de Villiers. Thank you for living in NYC and for being my prize fighter, gang leader, battle planner, bodyguard, inspiration, activator and friend. I am only saying the fewest of the things you do here. You are flippen awesome and I love you.

Gys. Brilliant teacher, friend, accommodator, joke maker, theatre blood pumper. Thank you. Your involvement makes me feel like a real writer and performer.

Zane Gillion. You are the most amazing scene partner and a brilliant performer. You brought the words to life with passion and deep understanding and feeling. Thank you. What a great support, energy and electricity you brought. Forever indebted to you.

And then, my friends, old and new who came with arms wide, love pouring out and the best support to watch my work. Thank you.

 

A dive in to Lost Property

Yesterday afternoon we jumped on the PATH train and exited into a thunderstorm in Jersey City. I kept on thinking about my Thundafund that brought me here. We were drenched by the time we reached the JCTC for the first night of this tiny curated festival of work.

The unassuming door to the space leads off a parking lot so there is no hint to the loveliness that is inside: A gorgeous intimate theatre.

Last night’s piece was an 80 minute monologue called Unbossed and Unbowed, written and performed by Ingrid Griffith and it tells the story of Shirley Chisholm a black woman who became a local politician, a congress woman and a wannabe president of the US, in the 60’s and 70’s. This is herstory I know nothing about. And it is rather extraordinary that the US is still waiting to have a female president.

Tonight’s plays are two 10 minute ones and Lost Property. I am overwhelmingly excited to be part of this, and I can’t wait to get feedback on the work. What an opportunity.

Thank you Thundafunders. Look at me go!

A Steamy Sunday in NYC

Yesterday was hot. The cool aircon of the Path Subway to Jersey City was a delicious respite. Our rehearsal was intense. I have written a really hardcore play. Jaci and Zane are dream players. We always feel like we want to be doing the full production.

It is amazing how quickly we make rituals. On Saturday Jaci and I bought little power breakfast bowls. They were delicious. We had to do it again yesterday. Frozen vegan chocolate protein with granola, banana and peanut butter. Yum.

After rehearsals we traveled back to Manhattan and caught a 5pm show of  The Day I Became Black by Bill Posely in a gorgeous old theatre The SoHo Playhouse. It was a very special one man show; a personal, funny, well observed journey towards bi-racial identity and how it plays out in a world obsessed with binary labels, boxes and things. I was charmed and moved by him.

After the talkback we came outside to a dusk that had been cooled by a rain shower that we had missed. It was a beautiful world of wet smells, glistening light and a gentle breeze.

New York Diary – Top Gun on a War Ship

Day 2 was me thrown into the deep end, extreme walking jet lag off, a visit to the Biennale at The Whitney, a trip back up to the Upper East Side, then back down to almost where I was before, to wait in a queue, watching the sailors in their white on the beginning of Memorial Day Weekend, while we waited for the ‘gate’ to open. Then it was the trek up to the top deck of The Intrepid, an actual airplane carrier, with planes on it (and a museum below) for the yearly outdoor screening of Top Gun. I will never be able to accurately explain what it was like. Mad, strange, hilarious, nostalgic, cute, mad, funny and bizarre. Google it. Beyond.

Today.

Today was a trip to Jersey City to have our first of 2 Lost Property rehearsals in the venue. Joy of joys. I cannot explain how happy we were.

Then – absolute luck of the lucky. The day before I had said how I would love to get Mexican vegan food while I am here. Boom. We stumbled upon the most awesome vegan friendly Mexican restaurant Hotel Toruga. It was spectacular.

And then! We saw Walk off The Earth live in an intimate and amazing concert. These guys put on the most delicious, funny, positive, charming, musical, slick and delightful show and I loved every minute. Loved.

My feet are aching but my heart is soaring.

 

Thoughts on asking for Money

It took everything I had to ask for money to help me get to Jersey City for the reading of Lost Property. I am still trying to unpack why crowd funding made me feel a certain shame. As if I needed charity.

But the desire to go there and represent my work; read it myself, propelled me out of shame and into a shy proudness. And, of course, the process exceeded my expectations. Family, close friends, and even acquaintances helped in big and small amounts and I managed to reach my dream target (which will more than pay for my ticket and production costs in the US). I also managed to do this in a record 4 days. I can’t believe it, and I am overflowing with gratitude and amazement.

So, what I am taking away with me today, and taking with me when I go, and what I will bring back, is that there are people who believe in me. They believe in my work, words, and theatre making. This feeling I am now allowing to permeate into everything I do, and it is no mystery that the flow gates are opening.

I am working more, and dreaming more and making more. I am manifesting and visualising and excited and energised. Watch this space.

Or watch me. The Deep Red Sea comes to the Alexander Bar on 20 and 21 May, just before I leave on the 22nd.

PS. A weird, convoluted, heartfelt bow to Pieter Howes. In the strangest, and most uncomfortable of ways we saw each other. I am sorry the world wasn’t a good place for you to be in.

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