Friday, December 2, 2022

DECEMBER OPE! HERE WE GO!

It's December 2nd, my loves. DECEMBER 2nd. The march of time is still a thing of WTF wonder. 

November!! 

 - The amazing client at PRI performed Dracula's Midnight Diner and it was SO GOOD!!!! We are so incredibly proud. You should probably watch this reel. 

THEY DID SO GREAT! So many thanks to COMPAS for the opportunity, for Malia and Karla for the incredible artistry, and to everyone at PRI, with special love to Miranda and Rashon... WHEWWWW.. it was incredible. 

 - My memoir class down at Walker Highview Hills also had their sharing and DID SO GOOD! This was all within a week of each other. My heart can't take it. 


 - Was lucky enough to do a performance of Shalee Coleman's Re(Cover): The Campaign with the amazing Meghan Wolff. 

 - Also got to play with Matt Prindle and a group of stupidly funny improvisers in the insane form Drop Ship, which will live forever in my soul.  


 - Improvathon destroyed and built up our tiny community again: ADORABLE ADORABLE'd my heart (thank you so, Butch), and then my laptop and I did my first bit of solo music improv. 


(That's a whale god singing.)

 - And then, finally, got to play some ukulele songs at Mary Jo Pehl's Garage for the Performing Arts. And that was just about as lovely a night as one could ask for. 



 - I also finished Andor and had a panic attack during the prison break episode. What an amazing show, that cast that cast that cast... I LOVE IT. 

DECEMBER, YOU WEIRD MINX, WHAT'S HAPPENING? 

 - I taught a corporate workshop on listening for the Marsh McLennan Agency yesterday (at Lawless Distillery), and they were fantastic! So grateful for the opportunity!

 - Something Musical presents Nora Laura & Jen (with Kelly on keys!) Musical improv at Improv a Go Go, Sunday Dec. 4th, 11th, and 18th, 8 p.m. show. It's a manic manic dream. 

 - Give the Drummer Some returns! As part of Our Town's Snow Wizard series at Strike Theater! Saturday Dec. 10th, 7 p.m. show! Physical improv with a live percussion heartbeat. 

 - I'm playing Gigi's Cafe (on 36th & Bryant Ave S in Minneapolis) on Friday Dec. 16th 6 p.m. - 8 p.m. with a NORDIC TUBA PLAYER!? I feel so lucky to live just blocks from Gigi's, and so grateful to Laura for curating a Neighborhood Showcase! Come for at least a hour of ukulele music and another solo musician who was described to me in the above terms. YES. 

More will come in January, but please look at this poster I designed. I bought myself Photoshop again: it is the most active form of procrastination I can muster. Also, Nudge returns in January to HUGE! See what I did there?


Love!








Friday, November 11, 2022

Improv A Thon! Raising $$ for HUGE Theater

Hi! Please join us in Give to the Max day, here in Minnesota. I'll be performing twice during HUGE's Improv A Thon... 

Once with the incomparable Butch Roy in our duo, Adorable. 

And once by my little lonesome, as Something Musical.  

Please give if you can! HUGE is trying to purchase a building. It's incredible. 

And if you're in the Twin Cities, join us Wednesday Nov. 16th, starting at 8 p.m., through midnight on Thursday Nov. 17th, at the theater itself, for all the free improv you could hope for. <3

Friday, November 4, 2022

No-mo-vember 2022

Hellooooo... Hoping spooky season paced itself, and you walked through it (and it through you!), and emerged on the other side. Hi November. Oh you. 

October was chock a block. Coco bananas. And great in many ways. 

 - I just finished a six week residency with Partnership Resources Inc. through COMPAS! We created and performed a musical in six weeks. HOLY GUH! We had our performance today and what sweetness. I wrote, directed, music-directed, composed, made the programs, and created the supertitles for the show. The amazing Malia Arakia Burkhart did the set, while the incredible Karla Nweje did the choreography. We performed at Center for the Performing Arts TODAY, and what a delight. It was so much work, but there was so much love. I'm so grateful for it all. (extra shouts to and for Miranda and Rashon for making every day a joy and actually possible. We are the luckiest, loves.)

 - Give the Drummer Some finished it's run at HUGE Theater! THAT WAS FAR TOO SHORT. We were amoebic id-machines. All improv all reaction, all pattern, all goofy. I hope we continue, as it feels like too precious and TOO GOOD of a thing to let go. 

 - BRING YOUR KIDS: The Unscripted Show! So many thanks to Matt Sass (of Four Humors Theater) for doing all the bits with me... for the children. We laughed and laughed, as your children are very funny. 

- There's A Crack in Everything (on September 30th, but still gets some love here) featured the amazing Danna Sheridan, MJ Matheson, Daniel Bonespur, and Sofia (with some improvised art making while Daniel played.) IT WAS SO GD LOVELY

 - And then, finally, The Rev. Matt Kesson's Monster Science Vs. There's a Crack in Everything! Matt talked monsters, I wrote and sang some spooky songs - - such a lovely time! Again, Matt, again! Also, the amazing Will Roberts joined me, and if you want to feel amazing, ask Will Roberts to play his bass. The night wrapped up with the band 10 items or Fewer. They're really really good. Like. Really good. 

Whewwww. It was busy. It was a lot. It was great. 

November you ask? 

- I'm lucky enough to be in re(cover): The Campaign as part of the 7th Right Here Showcase. Thursday Nov. 10th, 8 p.m. at the TEK Box at the Cowles Center. Shalee Mae Cole MauleĆ³n wrote something very cool, and I'm so excited to see it on it's feet. 

 - IMPROV A THON rolls again!! HUGE Theater's annual Give to the Max Day extravaganza!! I'll be performing Thursday Nov. 17th, 2 p.m. with ADORABLE (with Butch Rou!) and Thursday Nov. 17th, 3 p.m. as Something Musical by myself!! All at HUGE Theater. Show up ANYTIME, give online, you're great. 

 - I'll be playing original music on my uke at Mary Jo Pehl's Garage for the Performing Arts, Saturday Nov. 26th, 6 p.m. - 8 p.m. RSVP for address and further information: maryjopehl@gmail.com

 - My memoire class at Walker Highview Hills finishes up this coming Tuesday! Lovely!!

And here we are. WHEWWWWWWWWW.... 

An unsung hero for this week is my eldest kiddo, who got whatever illness is zipping around the elementary school here. It's not COVID, it's just rough. He was incredibly patient and came to a rehearsal/performance/strike while feeling lousy. 

And to everyone... I hope you're doing well. I'd love to see you. Let's please eat things together. Love!








Friday, September 30, 2022

Oh, it is! 

It is one day from October (month of month), and virgo szn (I now carry a binder full of notes, lesson plans, and calendarings) has moved into libra szn (#dreamy) and let's do it!

SHOWS

TONIGHT (which is technically September, I know), There's A Crack in Everything happens again! Featuring Daniel Bonespur, MJ Matheson, Danna Sheridan, and a mysterious guest. 7 p.m. Bryant Lake Bowl. Tickets here

A MASHUP! Thursday Oct. 6th, it's Rev. Matt's Monster Science VS. There's a Crack in Everything! Holy gob! Spooky songs and spooky tales, featuring the erudite Rev. Matt Kessen, the band 10 Items or Fewer, and myself, accompanied by the incredible Will Roberts on bass!! Tickets here!

Give the Drummer Some continues! Boy, we hope you like. Boy, we're having fun. Saturdays at HUGE Theater

The Unnamed Jill Bernard Project continues too, and I have missed every performance since the summer. GAHHHGH. It's the loveliest of shows, and I hope I can come play!

BRING YOUR KIDS: the Unscripted Show! A comedy show for kids and their grown ups! Bring Your Kids returns to make madness for your bored children. We have 75 minutes to make you laugh, and no script to do it! Tickets here!

TEACHINGS

 - Teaching theater class at Circus Juventas has begun!

 - Teaching at HUGE has begun, with an amazing Amplifying Voices 101!

 - Memoir class continues at Highview Hills through COMPAS!

 - Helping devise and direct a show with Partnership Resources Inc, who supports adults with mental and physical disabilities, all put together through COMPAS.  My manager is calling this a 'mega-residency': 6 weeks, four days per week, for two hours. We're one week in and there has been so much laughter. Is the world ready for a musical mystery set in a haunted diner?? LET US FIND OUT!

ETC

 - The Mayday's Genre Rollercoaster weekly online musical improv class has begun again! And I am so incredibly grateful. 

 - It's my birthday month! More on that later perhaps. 

Sending so much love!





Sunday, September 11, 2022

Hove, Actually

I've been thinking of this song since leaving Hove. Dedicated to every member of the Open Your Mouth and Sing cohort, students and teachers. What a dream! 


Sunday, September 4, 2022

MADNESS! MADNESSSS! SEPTEMBER 2022

Oh hey. 

We are mostly un-jetlagged. I got food poisoning. I am still recovering. FOOD POISONING IS DUMB. It's been over a week, and things are still not quite right

But what about September? 

Performances

 - Friday September 30th! There's a Crack in Everything returns! Featuring music by Daniel Bonespur, storytelling by Spencer Retelle (the Other Jeannie Retelle), and myself. It should be so lovely. Bryant Lake Bowl, 7 p.m. show. 

 - Wednesdays at HUGE Theater: The Unnamed Jill Bernard Project. We take a look at kids' jokes, talk about them, and improvise off of what we discover. The group and form are full of joy. Part of HUGE Wednesdays, 8 p.m. show!

 - Saturdays at HUGE Theater: Give the Drummer Some. Josh Kaplan is a honest to goodness genius, and has gathered a dream. Josh provides the soundtrack and we provide the (mostly silent) movement. 7 p.m. show!


Teaching

Oh my goodness, this has changed a lot in the last week.. HERE we go!

 - Circus Juventas theater classes start up. 

 - HUGE Theater! I'll be teaching Amplifying Voices Improv 101 - - so excited!

 - Coming back for Children's Theatre Company's Radio Drama class... 

 - As school returns, so does touring at the Bakken Museum

 - COMPAS! Facilitating Memoir classes for residents at Walker Highview Hills. 

 - COMPAS! Teaching some improv workshops at Anoka Middle School. 

 - COMPAS! Helping devise and direct a show with Partnership Resources Inc, who supports adults with mental and physical disabilities. My manager is calling this a 'mega-residency': 6 weeks, four days per week, for two hours. So incredibly curious. 

What was once a quieter looking month, has become a month of stuff. School starts up.. hoping to get more Penny and the Bandits out there... preparing for some October things. (and honestly, still processing August in so many ways.) 

All the things! Hoping things are good. <3


Tuesday, August 23, 2022

Before September hits

THE SOLO ADVENTURE! 


 - I arrived in Brighton on a Sunday, and was immediately whisked by dear friends through Brighton Pride and walked through the Lanes, along the beach, and then fed blackberries and stuffed peppers for dinner. Already, I am in love. 

  - The Open Your Mouth intensive taught by Heather Urquhart and Joe Samuel was as incredible an experience as one could ever hope for. Dreamy new friends, so much laughter, so much seafood, full moon fish, much adventure, and 5 a.m. seagulls that just don't stop. It was grown up summer camp, and I had such fun. Singing together is a special thing, and singing improvised songs even more so. So incredibly lucky, and so incredibly sad to leave. (and, as the amazing Jules Munn reminds us, "Unclench your assssholllle".)


- I stopped in London to see friends I hadn't seen in years or a friend I've only seen in a tiny square on a screen. It was beautiful. The British Museum is incredible, and they should probably give all that stuff back. Very lucky to have seen so much! (also, London is awesome by rental bike, if I could only figure out a right turn. I truly have no idea how those work.)

 - EDINBURGH. Charity shops and gyoza, beautiful vintage and following crowds around theater spots. AMAZING. They stick performance everywhere! In shipping containers and under bridges, stuffed into every castle-like building one could find. (Except for the actual castle) If you have a Pimm's cup in the afternoon, you'll miss literally two shows. 

 - Chris Gethard's beautiful new solo show, front row, close enough to give me COVID. 

 - Baby Wants Candy was a goddamn dream.

 - Good Grief... a weirdly linear exploration of death and grief, as told by a bunch of hyper talented Xennial clowns. Lovely! Fine! and I really don't like Cowgate, for whatever reason. 

 - Unfortunate... the musical origin story of Ursula the sea witch. It was hilarious, hilariously done, and unexpectedly filthy! Dicks! (The pre-show music was WAP.) 

 - BriTANik is not British. They are American, and I love them. Fervently. So. Goddamn. Funny. 

 - The Tiger Lillies. I went, because if you have a chance to see them, you should. AND, the content (duh, Jen) was not for me. All expertly executed, perfectly on brand, possibly an approach I could try and emulate... Just needed a story with less rape and murder. 

 - Atsuko Okatsuka! So funny. Also, got to hang out with her and her husband Ryan for a bit, and that was so very nice.  

 - Show Stoppers! Improvised musical theater done in the style of three musicals. THERE WERE A BILLION PEOPLE AT THIS SHOW. It's a very very clever format, almost short-form-y (there's a 'director' to make sure everything moves along)... And funny. AND, oh man, do I prefer the manic freefall of Baby Wants Candy? I THINK I MIGHT.  

That was a lot of shows for less than three days. Lucky. 

I also walked up to Arthur's Seat, walked through the Old Town, cried over street musicians, adored my hotel room, stood amazed at the vintage offerings, and ate buttered chicken.  

Would I go back to either Brighton or Edinburgh in a heartbeat? Immediately and absolutely. 

London, I would go to give my laundry to the nice man and King's Laundrette and eat vegan Indian for 7 pounds around the corner from there. I would visit the British Museum again, and stay away from the center city. I would hop on the tube, and not worry about wherever I end up. Next time. 

So incredibly grateful for the opportunity. Certainly more to say later. We head back to Minneapolis on Thursday. WHAT ADVENTURE THEN???