In 2002 I was an actor in my hometowns local production of Peter Pan at the local Star Theater. No, I wasn’t “Peter Pan”, I actually played the dad, Mr. Darling. This really helped open me up to the creative side of myself even more and delve into one field I had wanted to explore; directing. In 2003 I was the second assistant director for the Star Theaters production of, “The Wind in the Willows.” Quite the experience as I had to tell the director that something wasn’t making sense visually with the lighting. She argued that the script didn’t say what I was bringing up. The Next practice I saw my drama teacher was present and that the director was doing what I had brought up. He looked at me and said, “I don’t know why she called me about it. You were right.”
My senior year in 2004 I directed an adaptation of “The Hobbit.” I had issues with my producers though as they didn’t show up after the first practice until tech week. This was due to my wanting to do everything different than what had been done before in plays at the theater. We sold out all but one showing if I recall and since so many had to be turned away the theater to this day does two weekend showings. Big thing for a small town. Yet, as I dug into live theater more, my passion for film dug deeper.
So since that time in high school, I have been working hard on my career in film and media production. I’ve had the itch to get back to live theater though and in passing with one of the actors, George Cron, on a web series i was directing, started talking to me about live theater. He said he was starting up some live shows monthly and to let him know if was interested. Months later we chatted again and his months horror show, “Grave Tales,” was in full swing every month in down town Springfield. The show harkened back to grand guignol style theater. Better translated by Merriam Webster Dictionary as, dramatic entertainment featuring the gruesome or horrible.
With my natural love of the horror genre my interest was piqued. After talking with George and meeting with show runner Sean Parker, I submitted a one act play I had wanted to do for some time; A modern day version of Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Cask of Amontillado.” The idea had started out as
a possible short film idea, but felt right for stage adaptation. So 13 years later, i stepped back into the role of director for “Amontillado.”
What a fantastic and fun night it was. I was happy to be part of Grave Tales: Episode 12! Knocked 13 years of live theater rust off and really enjoyed getting back to my roots. Also, the lady gagging during the guts portion of the story really made the evening. HA!
Special thanks to my awesome cast and crew for doing such an awesome job! I appreciate you beyond words!
Sean Parker, Kevin Keppy, Ryan Pippin, Jen McBride, Alton Capps, Billy Coatney, Shecky Von Mortis, Gabriella Ward, Danielle Gray, George Cron.