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The Late Mrs. Chadwick's debut!


The Late Mrs. Chadwick had its debut performance yesterday, and I was so happy with how it went. We had a good audience who laughed a lot, and my cast and crew just did such a fabulous job. I even was lucky enough to have Gigi and newly-minted HTPers Ryan Kacani and Aaron Fisher in the audience to see it! It was also kind of cool to have something I wrote seen by people who don't know me, in hopes of increasing the exposure to my work.


I was so pleased with the actors. Lenny and Frances were pretty much the first people who came to mind when I wanted to cast the roles of stuffy, unfailingly polite Arthur Chadwick and Edwin Shrewsbury, and I was so delighted that they wanted to do it. They were hilarious, grasping the particular tone of the humor perfectly and creating characters from this fabulous combination of the mannered way they spoke and their understated reactions to the madness all around them. I just love working with these two, and as usual they did not disappoint.


The title character of Mrs. Chadwick I had to think about much more. She has no lines, but she is demanding all the same-- she has to be physical and loud, and the actress has to be utterly uninhibited. I thought about it for a while, and then I came to Sam LeVangie. I think she has a lot of raw talent, and I really admired the way she threw herself into things and gave them a try. Though I have many talented actor friends who I love casting, I don't always want to use the same people over and over again but instead have a large stable so I can always have the right person for the role. I've wanted to work with Sam for a while now, so I thought this might be the thing. To my pleasure she accepted the part, and she did a wonderful job, looking hauntingly lovely in her pale makeup and white gown as she fearlessly wailed, hurled stuff, and melodramatically flopped around the stage.


And of course, I couldn't have pulled it off without Bernie and Carolyn. They handled the technical aspects, advising me on how to set up the stage, what sort of props and activity were going to be practical, and engineering a sound system to play the necessary sound effects of Matilda's carnage around the house. I am incredibly grateful that they were kind enough to lend their expertise to get my piece off the ground.

As far as directing goes, this show presented an interesting challenge in that it has two very distinct types of humor in it. The first is the witty, wordy kind inherent in Chadwick and Shrewsbury's dialogue. It's a little sophisticated, a little complex, requires a little bit of absorbing in order to get. The second kind of humor is the broad, physical, silly comedy of Matilda Chadwick. She screams, she breaks stuff, she rolls around on the floor. In order for both types of humor to succeed, we had to be careful to not permit them to overlap too much, so the nuances could be appreciated as well as the broader stuff.  

While there were many fine aspects of this production, one of my favorites was the moustaches. I had the idea to use false moustaches early on, and very quickly fell in love with the notion. You know, normally I'm very sensitive to the comfort levels and preferences of my actors and am usually quite willing to change my plan if it makes them feel better about it, but in the case of these moustaches, if my actors had been strongly objected to them, as Ryan Kacani put it after the show, I "would have found new actors." ;-)

So that's my third produced piece of playwriting after To Think of Nothing and Merely Players. It's cool that I was able to use a piece I generated during 31 Plays in 31 Days. And this one was seen by a little more by the public than the others, though it was a small house for a small festival. I need to get more of my work out there, and this is a start. I'm trying to submit more places in hopes of increasing my chance for selection. If you're interested, we still have one more performance next Saturday at 8PM along with Nick's show that Jared is in, Stranger Than Slash Fiction. I know a friend of Jared's managed to buy tickets for it yesterday, so there may be some available still. Go to this website to purchase.

Also, if anyone finds themselves in a position to put on a play, I just want to put it out there that I would love it if you'd consider using one of my scripts. As much as I love directing my own work, I want productions to happen without me as well. So if you need a script, please talk to me and maybe I have something that you would be interested in using. It would be my honor and pleasure.


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 1st, 2012 08:05 pm (UTC)
Congrats! Everyone looks great, and reading the play was very funny so with some good actors it would be hilarious. :)
Oct. 1st, 2012 08:12 pm (UTC)
Thanks so much for saying so!
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

About Me

My name is Phoebe. I'm Boston area theater professional and English professor focused in writing, acting, directing, and modeling. I'm known for having lots of interests, lots of opinions about those interests, and a very high estimation of the value thereof. This blog is for talking about whatever's on my mind, from my daily life to my activities to musing on any number of abstract topics. Thanks for taking the time to read.

My productions:

Upcoming Productions:

MRS. HAWKING part 2 and 3

at the Watch City Steampunk Festival 2016

presented by The Chameleon's Dish

Vivat Regina
by Phoebe Roberts

at 2PM


Base Instruments
by Phoebe Roberts

at 6PM

Saturday, May 13th 2017
at 274 Moody Street, Waltham, MA

Other Achievements:

"The Tailor at Loring's End" screenplay
Quarter Finalist in the Final Draft Big Break Screenwriting Competition 2013

"Adonis" screenplay
Top Ten Percent in the Bluecat Screenwriting Contest 2015

Latest Month

April 2017


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