Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Catching My Breath... With a few links.

The last few months for me have been a non-stop roller-coaster of rehearsals, auditions, performances and writing deadlines. I just finished the run of The FIREHOUSE THEATRE CABARET, a fast-paced, fun variety show at the Firehouse Theatre Project, which I had the privilege to both Direct AND appear in. You can read the recent STYLE review here.

Now, at the same time I was Directing and acting in The FTP CABARET, I was also Directing and Acting in a touring show for Theatre IV-- which I also wrote-- titled THE AIR WE SHARE. The show focused on alternative transportation, conservation, and environmental stewardship. Co-Produced by GRTC and Ridefinders (The local transit company), THE AIR WE SHARE was a rousing success. The show visited about 80 area schools and equipped students and their families with different tools to conserve energy and reduce our dependence on non-renewable fossil fuels.

The run of THE AIR WE SHARE was parallel to the run of the FTP CABARET, so on most weekdays I would get up at 6am, do two THE AIR WE SHARE shows, come home, take a nap, eat, then go to the Firehouse Theatre for an evening performance of the FTP CABARET. It was exhausting work, and I'm still kind of 'Zapped' from it all. To top it all off, my pal Eddie Garcia was in from LA filming a Movie, and he crashed on our couch for a month while Jennie studied feverishly to pass her Personal Training Certification Exam (She passed, by the way, and now she's kicking my BUTT!!) Throw in the two dogs and two cats in our small apartment, and the last few months have been eerily similar to the scene in that Marx Brothers Movie where twenty people fill a small Stateroom on a steamship. Pure Chaos.

Yet, I wouldn't trade it for the world. I'm really proud of the work I've been a part of recently. One of the most exciting parts about my new relationship with GRTC just arrived in my mailbox. See, out of the touring show experience arose the opportunity to write a comic book based on the TEAM RIDEFINDERS characters which GRTC has been pushing as part of their 'Clean Air Hero' campaign. I wrote the script for the comic book and lucked out when Pat Godfrey, owner/operator of Velocity Comics agreed to do the art work. I just received a copy of the book, and it looks great!!

My next writing project will be the book and lyrics for Theatre IV's tour THE BOY WHO CRIED WOLF with Julie Fulcher penning the music. I'm excited to be collaborating with Julie again-- we worked together on the 2003 premiere of THE JUNGLE BOOK, a musical which Theatre IV toured around the country and Barksdale put on it's Mainstage. Julie always has fantastic ideas, and her spirit and humor make her a joy to work with.

This week I also started rehearsals for GUYS AND DOLLS at Barksdale Theatre. I'm playing Nathan Detroit, a role I had a lot of fun with eight years ago at Swift Creek Mill Theatre in Colonial Heights. I'm really enjoying the cast camaraderie, and Director Patti D'Beck's energy is a renewable resource. Girlfriend could power a small town. She's awesome, and she brings some serious Broadway credits to Barksdale.

Meanwhile, Director James Ricks has been going full steam ahead with preparations for our production of RICHARD III at Henley Street Theatre. The casting is complete, and I will say that now that this thing is going to happen, I'm starting to feel that trepidation that one must feel before one jumps out of an airplane. It is going to be hard work, this one, but I'm really looking forward to us pulling off something special, provocative, and unique.

On the athletic front, Jennie and I will be running the Richmond XTERRA on June 14th at Brown's Island. Jennie will be doing the XTERRA 10k (6.2 Miles) and I'll be doing the XDURO 21k (13.1 Miles). They are both Trail Races, with a high degree of challenging obstacles in the summer heat. I'm still looking towards the NORTH FACE ENDURANCE CHALLENGE 50-Miler in the fall, and the XDURO will be my first trail race since the Sixth Grade. Color me excited!!

Well, that's it for now-- I should be blogging with a little more regularity on things like sports, movies, music and life pretty soon. I'll have more stuff coming more often, so stay tuned!!


Scott Wichmann


Frank Creasy said...

Hey Scotto - well, sitting in an Indy hotel room the past few nights, I too have had a chance to catch my breath, read and comment on various blogs, and just enjoy a slightly less hectic pace. Well, my performing schedule hasn't been quite so ridiculous as yours...but when I was rehearsing The Seagull, while performing in As You Like It (weekends, both in the same day for a few weeks), it almost got to where it stopped being a labor of love and almost simply became labor. It was labored, for sure!

But main thing I wanted to say brother was that I'm glad the artistic front has been so productive and rewarding for you recently. Also very glad for Jennie reaching an important professional goal...hmmm...and maybe I'll employ her to help me with losing a few more inches on the waist? Maybe I should do (low fat) lunch with her!

Anyway...I'll be there with Carol the night of the 14th to see Guys and Dolls. We remount As You Like It at Agecroft the first half of July, and perhaps then we'll both have some time to rendezvous and help one another prepare for Richard. Would be glad to help you in any way I can if you like, or just to talk about this project in general, which will be a butt-kicker but also an exciting way to kick off the fall season. Man - not even summer, we're talking about the fall!

See you soon dude. Take care.

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