September 6. . . Readying Madness

September 6. . . Readying Madness

I finally get a new draft of Madness done a week before the table reading, to give the cast time to look it over and give me time to let it go before we all start working on it.

Recent changes to the script connect the dancers to the missing Flying Man, which affects the movement as much as the story. And deepening and darkening the character of the man who’s trapped by classic standards of masculinity, and humanizing him before and during his transformation to a woman, and afterwards.

Working now on development pitches for Madness and for The Burlesque Astronomy Play. Trying to articulate where the script is and where it needs to go, and crucially, where is the heart of the script.

I talk with Madness workshop director Dan Granke, a Certified Fight Director who’s just gotten certified as an Intimacy Director. He’s excited about new ways to tell stories, ways that balance gender and power more equitably.

He explains that Intimacy Direction is not “here’s how to do a hug” – it’s figuring out where that contact evolves from, what leads up to it and what does it mean as actors approach each other. What kind of story is that contact telling, and what do the movements mean afterwards?

He’s asking a lot of the same questions dancers ask, in an exciting new field of drama that’s almost as much about ethics as storytelling.

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