We Are Now
nytheatre.com q&a preview by Bob Jude Ferrante
October 22, 2012
What is your job on this show?
Playwright/Producer (that's Sanctuary's model).
Are there boundaries as to what kind of theatre you will take part in?
Unfortunately for my sanity... no. Tell me about it... We're working in a quarter inch of concrete dust! Which we're making sure is all cleanup up before the audience comes, naturally... Maybe though that means that we get a chance to delight you with risk-taking art that doesn't skimp, and gives you a chance to experience work outside the box - the "theatre" box. When you come to this show, it comes on more like a store ... and then turns into a subway train... and then the dancing begins... And maybe it's something closer to that magic of sitting around a campfire; hearing a story... I know that's not a totally original image, but it's one we live-event-makers keep in our heads a lot.
Complete this sentence: My show is the only one opening in NYC this fall that...?
Is a COMEDY with ORIGINAL LIVE MUSIC and an AMAZING cast, in an IMMERSIVE futuristic environment taking place in a HUGE open midtown space located on E. 43rd between the UN and Grand Central. As if that didn't filter things out enough... is more risk-taking than much of what you'll see in a black box, and gives pleasure (very important) like a big crazy-ass Broadway show. There, there are probably only five or six shows in NYC that hit all those markers.
Do you think the audience will talk about your show for 5 minutes, an hour, or way into the wee hours of the night?
HOURS probably... ? As audience you'll have a lot to talk about. You'll see a carefully worked out piece, 18 months in the making and scary ambitious in its size and scope; you'll see innovative use of non-traditional space; you'll be surrounded by a vision of the future that's really specific but is subtle enough to catch your imagination (it's not an amusement park ride, but it is amusing!)... And you'll probably want to hum one of the tunes... And ask questions about how we did some of the more magic-y things like make words appear on the wall... Or you'll be wondering about the talking, singing giant cockroach/prophet? Or you'll talk about the political ideas in there. It's definitely a non-boring experience...
Which “S” word best describes your show: SMOOTH, SEXY, SMART, SURPRISING?
Surprising... Because on an indy budget, we pull it off again (as we did with New Theory of Vision's use of a virtual projection environment)... Giving you something big that doesn't cost a lot - even the top end ticket is only $30 (and believe me, it helps us a lot if you decide to pick that one up!).... And surprising because this group of people worked together on this for 18 months, dedicated to seeing this vision through. And - hopefully - surprising because you'll find yourself enjoying something that might not be cushy and comfortable but is definitely fun, and challenging, and lovely - as in filled with love.
If you had ten million dollars that you had to spend on theatrical endeavors, how would you use the money?
If we had ten million dollars? We'd do FIFTY shows, still all crazy-ambitious stuff, and next time have plenty of money to pay these generous artists more than the pittance downtown theatre can afford. That's the real challenge doing this kind of art... the big institutions are great, but they're breathing all the money/oxygen up and are mostly trapped in the same boxes they've always been in... maybe they take a chance on a scary idea, but they aren't in the street figuring out how to make something REALLY new. And then there's the tiny ones like us, always one step from oblivion, out there taking big risks with so little money in the bank that we have to hope we sell a lot of tickets so we can do it again and again. So come out and support these risk-takers... you may not yet realize how much you need them.