Miranda, Miranda Heyman, Charlie Von Simpson discussed on All of It


And AM a 20 NPR News and the New York conversation. Today on fresh air. Former Yankee pitcher CC Sabathia talks about drinking heavily through 15 seasons, including his most dominating years on the mound and about getting sober tune in at two and 93.9 FM or ask your Smart Speaker to play W N Y. C. This is all of it on W N Y C. I'm Alison Stewart. And this hour we've been talking about gathering the power of coming together the benefits of sharing our time with one another. These experiences were greatly missed in the past year and a half. A new production of the Signature Theatre invites theatergoers to congregate and explore communal space. The whole the signature Theatre through 10 separate installations and pieces by a creative team that reflects the kind of change much of the theater community demanded in 2020. It all started with playwright Lynn Nottage, the first and so far only women to win two Pulitzers for drama. The past few years, Lynn has had a residency at the Signature theater. And when it began to have talks about reopening the signature, not as decided that for her next work, the culmination of her residency she would share her platform with other artists of color. The decision came as you described in The New York Times out of a desire for the reopening of in person performances to reflect the kind of theater world she and other creators want to inhabit. One in which theatrical productions and creative processes are more inclusive. With that in mind, she and director and co creator Miranda Haman teamed up with almost 20 others to collaborate on a new show titled The Watering Hall, You Know, a Place where people gather it opened in June and has been extended through August. 8th. The creative team involves playwrights like Christina Anderson and Charlie von Simpson, plus visual artists such as Vanessa German. It is a range of talent involved. Joining me now are Lynn Nottage Highland. Hi, Alison. How are you? I'm good. And Miranda Heyman. Hi, Miranda. Nice to meet you. Nice to meet you, too. So I wanted to start by asking both of you. It's It's a little bit of a, uh, you know an essay question. But this is one of the first theatrical productions to open for in person viewing in the city. Lynn. How does that feel? Um, well, it felt a combination of of excitement and repetition and fear. But I just think coming out of like a truly bizarre traumatic Transformative year her, um It felt really important to begin to have a conversation in real time, You know, to move from all all of what we were talking about in terms of opening up the spaces and making them safe and actually beginning to manifest that Miranda, How did it feel for you? Equally, you know, fearful. I mean, I also feel humbled by the opportunity to be able to be one of the first. It meant that there are a lot of questions that our community was asking that we were asking ourselves and of each other. Um, and it felt exciting to be able to have an opportunity to be able to be one of the first and open that conversation up. The rest of our community and the institutions as well as ourselves. Really? Then when did it come to you to share your platform? Your residency with other creators, some of whom you hadn't worked, who hadn't worked yet with the signature. I think it really came out of a conversation that I was having with page Evans, who's the artistic director of of the Signature theatre, and she approached me during covid about creating a piece and I felt that what I wanted to do was make a piece. That invited folks back into the theater and a really meaningful and intentional way, and I reached out to Miranda Haman, who you know, is an incredible director. But it's also someone who has really vast experience in devising work, and we begin having conversations about what we loved about theater. And you know what we wanted to see change in theater and how we could create something. That was really reflective of the diverse in of interest ways in which we as artists are leaning into our practice. And you know, one of my mantra is is. How can we disrupt the tyranny of the proscenium? And, um, invite people to explore a theater like in a much more expansive way, and we began to really, really hone in on the signature theater lobby. Which is one of the few places for us as theater artists that feels truly inclusive and communal. And is that watering hole like you mentioned where you do see generations. Of people meeting, you know, to get sustenance, you know, to wait to see shows to use the WiFi to use the free bathroom. That's there, which is kind of essential in New York City, and we began thinking about what was missing. Signature Theatre, and what's really missing is just engagement of a lot of young by park artists. Who are not in the stage in their careers where they're being invited up count to make art and we thought as the theater is reopening, it felt essential to invite those voices into the space to collaborate with us, and we really began to To reach out to folks who we admired and the folks who challenged us and folks who we felt with own to ask questions that needed to be asked of either in this moment. So I'm going to full disclosure. I bought tickets for this before. I knew you guys were gonna be on the show. But my tickets aren't for another two weeks. So I'm getting a little bit of a preview here, so my questions may be a little bit more of the Sort of like, gosh, how do how do you plan to do that? From what? From what I've read about it. So Miranda, I'm curious, So the way it's been described to me is that the production works at the audiences in small groups, and they're led by a guide. What we're about. This setup was exciting for you as a director. Well, it was exciting, like Lynn said..

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