I hate May and June

May 31st, 2012 donnahoke

I really do. There is always too much going on so that I miss half the things I want to be doing, and am almost too busy to enjoy the things I am. Put a layer of baseball on top of all that, and trying to find time to write… next to impossible.

That said, there are some good things happening. I got to go to the Shaw Festival in Ontario to cover shows for Buffalo Spree, which was a ton of fun. In the eight years, I’ve been back in Buffalo, I’m embarrassed to say I’ve never been there, but I will definitely be going back. It was a perfect way to spend Memorial Day weekend and enjoy some classic works. My favorite was Githa Sowerby’s A Man and Some Women, a play she wrote in 1913 and the premiere of which was cut short by the start of World War II. The play fell into obscurity and was not resurrected until 1996, when it received its second production in Bristol; the Shaw is the play’s North American debut. Poor Sowerby never saw the play get the life it deserved.

Also, I’m very proud that Matthew Crehan Higgins and I curated the very first BUA Takes 10: GLBT Short Plays at Buffalo United Artists, opening June 22. My short play, WRITE THIS WAY, will be part of it, and what’s exciting about that for me is that this play has been produced five times, including in Manchester, England, but this is the first time that I’ll be able to see it. (As an aside, I find this is a problem with short plays. I’ve had a lot produced, but given the length, I don’t usually travel for them. As a result, I never learn from the experience, or have any idea how I might make the play better. Nonetheless, I wrote two new shorts that I’ve started to send out; it’s always exciting to see if they’ll actually hit.) 

Opening June 21 is Subversive Shorts, which will feature HARD CELL, the play I debuted at the Buffalo Infringement Festival last summer. What’s really cool about this is that the guy who plays the prisoner in the fringe production will now play the chaplain; I can’t wait to see his take in the opposite role! This is a tough little play (atheism is always a tricky subject), so I’m glad that director Virginia Brannon had enough interest in it to revive it during the regular Subversive season.

My new play, FLOWERS IN THE DESERT, is currently in workshop, and I got some great feedback last week at the peer review, and also this week from the Chicago Dramatists Script Lab. And in April, the show had a reading in Myrtle Beach; they sent me the tapes of the reading and talkback, and if I ever figure out how to convert those little microtapes to something watchable, I might be able to see it. The play will get another reading this fall as part of the workshop, so I have revisions to make before then.

Then when I can, I’m taking lots and lots of lots of notes for A KIND OF SALVATION, my newest full-length. I’m very excited about this one, but as I have so many things ahead of it on the to-do list, I can’t say much just yet.

So May is almost over. One down, one to go, and then hopefully, things slow down and the keyboard heats up… What’s up with you?

Written by donnahoke

donnahoke

Dramatists Guild Council member and ensemble playwright-in-residence at Road Less Traveled Productions, Kilroys List and award-winning playwright Donna Hoke’s work has been seen in 40 states, and on five continents. Her full-length plays include THE COUPLE NEXT DOOR (Princess Grace semi-finalist, currently in its third year in rep in Romania), SEEDS (Artie award winner for Outstanding New Play), FLOWERS IN THE DESERT (AACT top 20 finalist), SAFE (winner of the Todd McNerney National Playwriting Contest, Naatak National Playwriting Contest, and the 2015 Great Gay Play and Musical Contest), and BRILLIANT WORKS OF ART (2016 Kilroys List, Winner HRC Showcase, Firehouse Festival of New American Plays, top ten Woodward/Newman finalist); she’s also authored more than two dozen short plays that have had hundreds of productions. Donna is also a New York Times-published crossword puzzle constructor; author of Neko and the Twiggets, a children’s book; and founder/co-curator of BUA Takes 10: GLBT Short Stories. For three consecutive years, she was named Buffalo’s Best Writer by Artvoice, the only woman to ever receive the designation.

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