Shows, Taphouse

Reflection: The Staged Reading of ‘TAPHOUSE’ at Process at the Pocket


Earlier this year Copious Love was asked to read all of the scripts chosen for Season 3 (themed Past, Present & Future) at Pocket Theater’s new play reading series ‘Process at the Pocket.’ This is a great way to get honest and constructive feedback from a panel of local professional theatre artists as well as for audience members to get a sneak peek into our season. Reading ‘Taphouse’ was especially exciting because we got the chance to collaborate with a new playwright, Kiki Penoyer, and play with some new actors that we had not yet had the chance to work with. I gathered together some of the best actors that I know, Kiki recommended some of the actors she had enjoyed in readings previous and together we delved into this amazing script. The reading went off without a hitch. The actors brought their A Game, the audience was audibly entertained and contrary to my and Kiki’s fears regarding timing, we did not go over 2 hours. Win! Afterwards we met in the lobby for the panelists to give us feedback regarding the script, the production, marketing ideas, as well as their overall thoughts and musings. We had some great minds on board and the ideas shared and discussed were constructive and massively encouraging. This show is on its way to a full production and is set to go up at the Ballard Underground in June 2015.

Fig. Alpha.5 : She prepares
Fig. Alpha.5 : She (Chelsea Madsen, author of this post and hero of time) prepares

For me, the biggest take away from this experience was hearing incredibly talented actors personalizing and internalizing these beautiful words. The music, written and performed by Sophia Federighi which is entwined in the script, brought a level of emotion to the piece that I had not yet experienced. I had a hard time fighting off tears toward the end. For me, this only further solidifies that we made a good choice in choosing this script for production. One of my favorite theatre mottos is, “Always make them laugh, try to make them cry.” This play does both with zeal, poise and authenticity.

This show is the first that we at Copious Love have chosen to produce that was not written by a CLP Staff member. We recently decided to open up our seasons to a submission process from now on, welcoming any playwrights to send in their work to be considered for production. From a pile of scripts we narrowed it down to one, that lucky script was ‘TAPHOUSE’.

The stories and characters get stuck under your skin, you will find yourself picking out these people the next time you go out to the local dive bar, the place everyone in the neighborhood goes. If you happen to be familiar with ‘The Three Sisters’, you will see a modern adaptation of Anton Chekhov’s brilliant play. If you are not, never fear. This is not a direct retelling of his tale, but an examination of the lives of small town artists and the exploration of their collective idea of “home”. It fits well into our season, focusing painfully on the present while being poetically obsessed with the future and the past.

After you see this play you will, without a doubt, find yourself craving a really good beer and some real, honest conversation. Hopefully we will be able to provide you with not only that excellent beer, but some good conversation topics as well. What more could you want?

–Chelsea Madsen, Artistic Director of Copious Love

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