I did a shoot a little while ago. People have told me they'd seen it. I had seen it on the web at nylife.com - but not encountered it in the wild. And then I did.
I'll be in a reading of a wonderful and dare I say important new play by A Rey Pamatmat at the Atlantic Theater this Thursday at 7 pm. The amazing May Adrales directs a cast of mad talented folks.
About a year and a half ago I was invited to workshop a new play called Trayf by a writer I did not know. She was an MFA candidate at Hunter college. I'll read anything, so I said yes not knowing what to expect. Turns out I'd be embarking on a journey with some folks that have become some of my most favorite creative collaborators. Lindsay Joelle is a fierce, funny and intelligent writer (and a lovely human), and each read we've done (and there have been a few) since that first one at Hunter has been a thrill. Proud to report that we are now in the middle of it's first professional PRODUCTION at Penguin Rep Theatre in Rockland County, NY. Come check us out:
Brunch is the best. Unless you're serving it.
Youngblood Brunches are just like regular brunches, but awesomer. And this Sunday I will be partaking in my second brunch piece of the season, (this time with less nudity, sorry).
Eric March's The Seventh Sense. Directed by the allstar of my brunch life, Colette Robert.
Also in the cast: pretty much everyone you know and love.
Click here for more info.
Courtney Wetzel rocks.
She has invited me to work on some fantastic plays with some truly fantastic people.
Now she's cast me in a second play by Hunt Holman (last one was called Gun Club. Intense. Funny. So. Much. Fun.) being read at the Cherry Lane Theatre; possibly my favorite theatre location in all of NYC. It's a pretty magical block. And a wonderful place to work.
This play is called Shane Bogus and I will be playing the titular character. If you're around tomorrow at 2 pm, please join us.
No, I didn't suddenly develop musical abilities, though I do have rock star dreams and was the lead singer of a band for about a week in college (ah, grunge). My first leading role in a feature length film is now available on itunes!
I made a movie with a wonderfully intelligent and visionary director named SM Kerstein a few years back. He took his time editing the film. It spent some time on the festival circuit & even won some awards. It got a distribution deal. It's called Motion Sickness and now you can rent or purchase it on itunes. It's pretty trippy. A little scary too.
Have a look see on the ol' imdb.
To get it on itunes, click here.
Some days I feel like without new play readings, I wouldn't have much of a career. There's the occasional commercial, or voice over (which I thank my lucky stars - and my awesome CESD commercial peeps for!), but in the absence of a gig, or auditions for the aforementioned gig (oy, don't get me started), a lot of actors' day to day acting happens doing readings. And they can be glorious, and for folks like me, necessary. A creative outlet, a chance to take a chance, an opportunity to make some quick choices, AND TO READ A PLAY. Oh, and probably a helpful process for the playwright...assuming your choices aren't completely bonkers...come to think of it, sometimes then too (hi Michael Lew). All this is to say, I'm doing another reading at the Lark this week, one on Sunday and another of a play called Shane Bogus (I play Shane Bogus) at the Cherry Lane on Tuesday June 16th at 2 pm and I couldn't be more thrilled for the work. Some days you write a post on your website and what you're really trying to say is thanks. And read more plays.
I got a friend request on facebook from James Inverne. We have a couple of common friends. I couldn't place him. I accepted the request. Why not? Shortly after I got a message from him asking about doing a reading of a play he had written. Again, why not? I love reading new plays. I had no expectations.
Then information starts to trickle forth. Benjamin Kamine will be directing. We've met - not worked together - but I've heard nothing but good things. I was recommended to James and Benjamin by Philip Himberg, who's play Paper Dolls I had recently worked on. The play we were to read is called A Walk with Mr. Heifetz and is about an encounter between Jascha Heifetz and Yehuda Sharrett in the mid 1920's in what was then Palestine. I was to play Heifetz, the prodigious violinist. These were all wonderful things to find out. Then I heard the kicker. Steve Guttenberg would be participating in the reading alongside the wonderful Yuval Boim and myself. I'm just going to repeat that for all similarly aged peeps. I got to work with Steve Guttenberg.
Working on the play with Yuval, Steve, James and Ben couldn't have been more enjoyable. It's a complex and profound conversation between passionate men chock full of interesting stories. Ben steered us in some thoughtful conversations, and it was great to have James in the room to share his intentions and scholarship with us. The reading took place in a stunning home on Riverside Drive as the sun was setting over the Hudson. The play went off rather well. There was musical accompaniment and wonderful food. The audience was receptive (and included Alan Dershowitz!). If I sound a little glowy and a tad name-droppy, well...yup. Random requests from relative strangers don't usually yield experiences like this one.
Holy Crap I GOT TO WORK WITH STEVE GUTTENBERG!
Ever put a play up in less than two weeks? If the play itself wasn't already intense, it's gonna be. This one's had it's inherent intensity umm...intensified (yup, I said it) by a super-fast rehearsal process and I think we've got something here. It's sad and funny and sexy and dangerous and it stars myself and Diana Ruppe. It's directed by the awesome Abigail Zealey Bess (who sounds like she's from London) and it's currently playing at the 13th Street Repertory Theatre.
Tis the season of the readings, lalalalala la la la la...
Fruiting Bodies by Sam Chanse, directed Shelley Butler (twice!) was awesome (and mushroomy).
Tiger Style! by Mike Lew, directed by Jaime Castaneda was a mad funny way to lose my O'Neill Theatre Center virginity.
Safeword by Mariah MacCarthy, directed by Jessi Hill was challenging and funny and really good.
Jane of the Tree by Andy Bergh, directed by Abigail Zealey Bess was stupendous good fun.
Domesticated Queer, also by Andy Bergh, also directed by THE Abigail Zealey Bess was also stupendous good fun.
Read to Me by Brendan Pelsue, directed by Sherri Barber was heartbreakingly great.
Walking Shadows by Chris Ceraso and DS Lliteras was pretty harrowing and what a freaking great cast Chris put together.
I'm sure there have been others I've forgotten and I'm sure they were delightful. If I were a more responsible website updater...suffice it to say that aside from the weather, all these readings might very well be my favorite thing about summer.
I've been rehearsing a new play. I play a guy *SPOILER ALERT* that gets sick after meeting a (possibly) wonderful girl, and not telling her about my illness. Good times. I think it's pretty lovely. And difficult. And sad. And hopeful.
Come see it.
After approximately a million (rough estimate) short plays, readings, workshops, etc...at the Ensemble Studio Theatre (where I happened to become a lifetime member at the end of 2012) I have finally booked a mainstage show. I'll be playing a variety of supporting roles in this show about a group of artists during the blacklist. I am thrilled for so many reasons. I'm doing a play - I don't do them neary often enough. I'm playing some characters. This play takes place during a time, and references so many artists who's work has really affected me - specifically my former teacher, the late Phoebe Brand and her late husband Morris Carnovsky (who wrote a book that you should read if you love acting - The Actor's Eye). The play is called Finks. Performances begin March 28th at the Ensemble Studio Theatre.
What happens when you transpose the WWF storyline between "Macho Man" Randy Savage, Hulk Hogan and Miss Elizabeth to an office setting? Come find out Sunday at 1pm at the Ensemble Studio Theatre.
I'm participating in the first set of Brunch plays of Youngblood's season at the Ensemble Studio Theatre. It's a partnership with the 52nd Street Project. Our piece has vikings. i have an axe. And impulse control problems. Click here for tickets.
If you've been watching tv recently, especially if you watched any coverage on election day - you've probably seen this. That's me awkwardly waving at my "daughter." She did draw an impressive likeness of me. Let's hope this thing plays for a while.
I booked a national Toyota commercial, and shot it last month (days before booking and shooting another big one! go me!). It aired during Sunday night football last week. Have a look see. It's kinda funny. And I make some serious seriousface.
Another post! Already! Too soon?
I just finished a workshop of Andrea Kuchlewska's play Kissing at the Women's Project, and it was magnificent. I got to play a working class Irish guy in a Boston suburb (typecasting right?) that can't quite get away from the bonds of his family and past. It was truly satisfying to spend a few days in a room with a great group of theatre artists (and people) just working out the play, with no pressure to perform it, or be "ready" - just taking this new work and really exploring it, digging as deep into it as it would support. Thank you Women's Project and Andrea Kuchlewska!
More commercial holds! More commercial auditions!
Almost had another theatre workshop lined up for next week. I was also apparently close to being in Pennsylvania shooting another film. And just like that, no workshop and no film. Instead, I'm on hold for a Chase commercial, and will probably audition for another one (or two), do a reading series on Monday night (Cherry Picking, at Housing Works. Come, it'll be fun. Promise!) and perhaps finally get around to the home improvements that have been half-finished for weeks (alright, months).
Shot the film Mary and Louise this past week. I was snapping pics, posting em & realized - not a thing about it on my website - I've had a bunch of gigs that I have been proud of since I last said anything here. The play Spring Tides by Melissa Gawlowski. Love the play & the writer. I love the role(s) I got to play. And am very proud of the work I did. Alas, the show was...but I think the beautiful heart of it was there & I got to make some funny. I hope. I did a brunch play called True Timber at the Ensemble Studio Theatre. Think Brokeback Mountain with lumberjacks, but funny enough that we couldn't hold it together, and it kinda went off without a hitch anyway. A high point in my life. I did a reading at EST a few weeks ago. It was called The Majestic Players Storm Kansas City. It was epic. I was Russian, Italian, possibly German and very large. It was great fun. I've auditioned for a few commercials. I'm on hold for one right now. I did a reading of The Ever and After, by Rachel Teagle, winner of Leah Ryan's FEWW prize for emerging female writers. It was superb & I was honored to be a part of it. I got to be the villain. Villains are cool. I'm about to go away to shoot a short film called A Certain Type of Love Story. I play a music teacher.
Last Tuesday I got to sit in a theatre and watch the film Motion Sickness, AKA my first lead role in a feature film. It was...wow. That's a lot of my face. The film was thrilling and surreal and discomforting and titillating and kudos to SM Kerstein for accomplishing what he set out to do. On Thursday I got to work on a film called Emoticon with the legendary Carol Kane, and the pretty amazing director/writer/actress Livia De Paolis, playing the possible future love interest of Livia's main character. Also got callbacks for two "Daddy" Commercials as I like to call them (me = young dad). All the while I've been rehearsing for a play - and finally, this Tuesday (last night) we introduced the world to Jon Kern's play Tapefaces. I flipped onto the stage at Ars Nova and what a ride it was. Kung Fu, racial identity and a whole lot of laughs. You shoulda been there. Now, a nap.
I was supposed to go on vacation. I got a call from my agent. "You're supposed to be away for the shoot date, but they asked to see you, will you go?" This doesn't happen to me very often, matter of fact, last time I recall being "requested", I went to the audition, and then proceeded to break my face and get a concussion, which made me oh so pretty for the callback, but I digress..
I went. It was a blast in the audition room. The director, Cole Webley is super cool, and fun, and threw out all kinds of permission to get ridiculous. And I did. And I liked it. And then I was "in the mix" for a few days as my vacation departure date got closer. And I booked it. And a whole bunch of travel plans got changed. And I made it to Baltimore. And we shot the commercial. And there was an earthquake - which we were only sure of cuz no one could get wireless reception for a spell.
They ended up not really wanting to push the ridiculousness (bummer), but they have a good set-up in the spot, and they had some great people on the shoot - Viola Harris is magic - and the peeps from GE were happy to share the caulk (that sentence needed to be written). I hope they got the commercial that they imagined! And Duda's Tavern in Fell's Point was a hell of a place to happen upon on a Monday night.
We've gathered a beautiful ensemble of theatre makers from around the world to devise a new adaptation of Richard Brautigan's novel IN WATERMELON SUGAR, a strange and dazzling meditation on the imperfection of human endeavors. This story, set in a world where the sun shines a different color every day; the houses are made of watermelon sugar; and each inhabitant is marked by dreams of gorgeous and terrible talking tigers, cracks open the myth of an American utopia. With the gift of space from SPACE at Ryder Farm, Christopher Burris, Megan Carter, Pia Furtado, Jason Liebman, Tina Mitchell and Kristen Sieh will spend five days developing the novel’s text into a play.
June 29th at ART/NY - 520 8th Avenue, on the 3rd Floor, I'll be participating in a reading of Mocha, by Eleanor Burgess as part of Reverie Productions Next Generation Finalist Readings. Reading starts at 7 pm.
Last year, my friend and fellow actor, Michael Nathanson got me in to audition for this flick Win for Life. We shot it around New Jersey, had a great time playing around on set, and a year later - here it is! Reed Adler wrote and directed this funny little romp about what happens when a mild mannered substitute teacher is forced to embrace his inner Rambo. Hopefully playing the festival circuit in the coming months.
- Win For Life
Every Monday in November at the Knitting Factory in Brooklyn we are presenting an encore of the award winning production of Can I Really Date a Guy Who Wears a Yarmulke? The production was a sellout smash at the Midtown International Theatre Festival this past summer, and I received a nomination for Best Lead Actor for my performance (as did the leading lady, the madly talented Catherine Lefrere). It's kind of a funny story how the revival came to be - suffice it to say it very nearly never happened and the Beatles are largely to thank for it (and a few other things...). We opened last Monday after nearly no rehearsal (seems to be a trend with this show..) to a great crowd and some very appreciated laughter. It's pretty nutty performing once a week - you just never know what you're gonna get (other than a good time, of course, what else could I possibly mean?) We have 3 performances left and I urge you to check us out. It's good fun, and the bar is open. Here's the skinny: Play, Fun & Bar. Details at www.yarmulkeplay.com
- Can I Really Date A Guy Who Wears A Yarmulke?
- False Double
- Motion Sickness