My mission is to work collaboratively with other creative, thinking artists to produce material and experiences that are both meaningful and memorable to us and our audiences.
Our material is a means to an end: it may exist already; it may be adapted; or, it may be produced from scratch. I welcome opportunities to create original, company-developed material (devised theatre) as well as interdisciplinary and multi-media projects.
As director, I am the facilitator and filter for the creative process. My job is to get us all on the same page at the same time. How and when we get there depends on our communication and collaboration.
My approach is problem-solution: I help articulate the “problems” presented by our text and context and then guide our attempts to find the best possible “solutions” in our production meetings and rehearsals.
Concept or gimmick? No matter how exciting or novel a director’s “concept” may seem, if it isn’t dramaturgically sound, then it’s probably just a gimmick.
Ours, not mine. This is not my play, and I am not God, nor am I a puppet master. We have different but equally important jobs. I don’t give line readings nor attempt to do your job.
In educational theatre, the process always is more important than the product. Yes, I want the best product possible, but not by sacrificing the learning process, creativity, or team ownership.
I like to start the creative process as early as possible, so we have plenty of time and energy to brainstorm, discover, and share.
Still, our time together in meetings and rehearsals should be as efficient and productive as possible. Advance planning and time management are absolutely essential to everything we do together.
When selecting titles and casting, I am sensitive to number of roles, gender distribution, and parity for our actors of color. Without exception, I adhere to AEA’s policy of non-traditional casting, which is not the same as color-blind casting.
Although I am passionate about my art and dream big, I also am pragmatic. To use a card analogy, my job to understand and accept the cards I have been dealt and then play the best possible hand.
Honey, not vinegar. Years of experiences have taught me that patience and kindness are virtues, even in the theatre. A smile, a pat on the back…a little positive affirmation goes a long, long way.
Finally, let’s keep everything in perspective: it’s just a play.