Two weeks ago a handful of us braved the ever unpleasant north Seattle traffic to crowd around some cheese and crackers at Chelsea Madsen’s (Artistic Director, CLP) Ravenna home. Two scenic artists, two directors, two producers, one playwright, one dramaturg, and one amazing puppy with whom the playwright became quickly enamored.
I am not at liberty at this time to disclose any of the finer points of the design, vision, etc. – but what I can say is this :
In Taphouse, the artists of Copious Love Productions have found an amazing treasure. Each of us around the room grew in our fever with each new idea. How do we arrange the stage? …in relation to the audience? How do we balance the vivid realism of the piece with the inherent theatricality of its themes and ideas? How do we find a pinball machine? How do we tell this story in as genuine a way as possible?
There were introductions, scheduling duels, plans and dreams. The most of what we did was encounter our fearless director’s vision. HARDCORE DIRECTOR, who will be introduced to you shortly- I promise- is one of the most passionate and hardworking artists I have ever encountered and is so beautifully prepared, even though we are nearly six months from opening, is already ready for her opening night party speech. I presume.
At this point in production, everything seems possible. Everything is implicit. In our storytelling that night alone we could fill every stage in this city twice over with differing visions of Taphouse and each would be valid, each would be inspiring, each would be perfect. Being in that room felt like being at the chalk line for some marathon- looking to my left and right and seeing a small army of friends and collaborators tapping the line with their fingers, wetting their lips, frantic to start on their 26.2 mile journey to… to what? Is this really how we track our journey in theatre? From chalk line to opening night? Maybe so, maybe I’ve egregiously summarized the whole experience of several million, disregarding the truth of most of us.
The point is this – romantic though in my portraiture, that was a fun meeting and I cannot wait to see and track with and for you, throbbing masses of Taphouse fans, the process by which we distill this city’s worth of ideas into that tactile work of art you will encounter this summer.