STAFF CORRESPONDANT - NO PROSCENIUM
See full portfolio of work here.
Review Crew: The Watering Hole (Podcast)
A Decade In Moments (Article)
NoPro’s Top Moments of 2019 (Article)
NoPro’s Best Shows & Experiences of 2019 (Article)
MIXED MEDIA ENCOUNTERS: The Great Pandemic Pivot of Immersive Theatre
Immersive theater is an industry founded on the core ideal of experience via in-person connection. What makes immersive theatre different from proscenium is that it seeks to highlight the performer and spectator sharing the same physical space, pushing the boundaries of what we know to be the social contract of theatre. Famed productions like Then She Fell and Sleep No More have been created on the foundation of the intimacy and magic of one on one encounters and physical relationship between audience and spectator that have come to define the genre as a whole. So, what happens to a form that depends on sharing space and physical touch when neither of those are possible anymore? This essay discusses what immersive creators refer to as ‘The Great Pivot’ in which the COVID-19 pandemic forced the industry to move online. Unlike the seemingly sensible transition for proscenium theater of filming performances for streaming, immersive theatre creators engaged in a period of experimentation and risk-taking in order to find a way to digitally mimic the closeness that is definitive to immersive work. Using various mediums and platforms like Zoom, email, text message, phone call and more, the immersive industry has stumbled upon revolutionary ways to create connective art when the relevant parties must remain apart. In doing so, the industry has also discovered innovative ways to embrace accessibility for audiences usually excluded from immersive work due to physical restraints, opening the door for an entire population to access immersive theatre experience for the first time. This essay will analyze the work of creators during this time, considering what worked and what didn’t, and will propose a way to move forward that includes both sides of the spectrum in order to sustain the newfound accessibility.
Published in "Entertainment and the Arts in the Quarantimes: Covid Plays" (University of Chicago, 2021)
THE ABLEIST EFFECTS OF CREATING "POST PANDEMIC THEATRE" DURING A PANDEMIC
This essay details the mid-pandemic switch back to socially distanced in person theatre performances that took place in between the first few waves of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. The piece argues that returning to in person work before a vaccine is available is dangerous and creates significant accessibility issues for immuncompromised and disabled audience members and theatre workers. The essay also analyzes the inherent lack of accessibility in outdoor and/or socially distanced theatre as a result of rushed processes and disregard for ADA regulations in non-traditional and outdoor venues.
Published in Howlround, December 2020. Read here.
ACTING AND REACTING: How to Prepare for the Unpredictable
This essay connects the ideas of immersive and relational theatre, and analyzes the idea of an immersive 'spectator' in context of participatory work. The piece then proposes Meisner's exercise of 'listening and responding' as a basis for an approach to performing immersive and participatory work.
Published in "Methods: A Journal of Acting Pedagogy" (Pace University Press, 2018). Purchase here.
COGNITIVE CUES IN IMMERSIVE THEATRE
This paper analyzes the purpose of cognitive science in relation to immersive theatre and how it may act as a tool for immersive creators. Using a case study examining the world famous immersive production, Sleep No More, the author dissects a multitude of theatrical elements present in the production and applies cognitive science theories to propose an explanation for recent allegations of abuse at the show. With a focus on the use of masks as an artistic choice, the author examines how each element may play a part in creating the perfect storm, so to speak. Considering the ever-shifting nature of cognitive studies and the vast difference in life experience each human possesses, this paper does not seek to make a formal conclusion regarding the causes of abuse at the production. However, it does aim to begin a dialogue of potential factors to consider when creating immersive work in order to best protect all involved.
Presented via London Center for Interdisciplinary Research - "Play, Masks, and Make Believe" Conference; December 2021
THE ARTIST AS TEACHER: How Collaborative Theatre-Making Skills Benefit the Classroom
Gail Godwin once said, “Good teaching is one-fourth preparation and three-fourths theater." This essay discusses the link between performance training and teaching and the tools that are transferable to both professions. Framing teaching as a performance in and of itself, this essay describes how stage presence, improv, and directing are desirable skills in the classroom. This essay also offers ideas about teaching artistry as a profession and the career paths that experience in teaching and performance can lead to.
Published in "Alternative Careers for the Performing Arts" (Routledge, 2020)
TRUMP SAID HE MADE INSULIN "SO CHEAP IT'S LIKE WATER." THAT'S NOT TRUE.
After Donald Trump made bold claims in a 2020 presidential debate about the price of insulin, this piece was written to debunk the myths and rumors. This opinion essay analyzes recent Executive Orders initiated by the Trump administration with regard to the cost of insulin in America and demonstrates the ineffectiveness of each proposed order. In addition, this essay stresses the importance of affordable medication and the inherent brokenness of the healthcare system in the United States.
Published in The Washington Post, September 2020. Read here.