Saturday, October 14, 2017

London Calling...the Devised Theatre Intensive takes flight

 The Hope Theatre, Hope & Anchor Pub, London

Beth Watson (Bechdel Theatre Company), Amy Clare Tasker (Amy Clare Tasker Performance Lab),  Peyvand Sadeghian, who just won a Professional Development grant from Arts Council England under their Grants for the Arts for her participation as an Ambassador in the 

Here in London, flew into Gatwick yesterday, took the express train to Victoria Station, and dragged my gigantic, million pound suitcase and over-packed carry-on suitcase and giant green purse the rest of the way via underground. Have you SEEN these escalators??? HARROWING. 

Sunday we kick off the first London Devised Theatre Intensive, #LDTI2017. This is a joint venture between Amy Clare Tasker Performance Lab  in London and my company, Blue Panther Productions in the US.  Amy, Susie Italiano and I have been working together since last January on this, it's thrilling to know we're meeting our international theatre artists for the first time tomorrow at Astronomer's Pub! 

The following week we'll meet these amazing guest artists, they are presenting master classes. In a world that is at once familiar (attended RADA as a year-long study abroad conservatory program in the 80s) and completely unknown  (I have never worked in a devised theatre environment).


Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Producing a 4 city international tour, what are ya, nuts?

Dylan Brody in rehearsal, The Apollo Theater, Chicago
I'm Laura Lundy, I'm a theater producer, my company is Blue Panther Productions. My office is in the San Francisco Bay Area, but I am as likely to be found in New York, LA, London or Barcelona.

I had a previous blog,, feel free to read my old posts, but everything from now on goes here.

I'm manic, or creative, or other words, in the theater. Now I'm making my living doing this. It's about taking insane chances and building in just enough of a net to know I'll be alive at the end...and happy that I made the leap.

I started producing out of the Bay Area, taking shows to other cities, when I ran Virago Theatre Company. Then I formed Blue Panther Productions.  I work with highly talented, really interesting playwrights in the US and in Europe to get their script created, edited, and completed, get them visible, and get their work produced.

There is a bizarre ease for me in producing in other cities. Being out of town means you're special. Critics want to come and see what it's all about. Audiences are curious. Actors, directors and crew are thrilled to get out of town, or to work with a team from another city. It's all good. It's great fun.

Tech, the Apollo Theater, Chicago

Here's a shot from the tech we had yesterday at The Apollo Theater in Chicago, I'm producing a great solo show there with supersmart humorist Dylan Brody, Dylan Brody's Driving Hollywood. That's him, at the top of the page. He opens May 3 and runs 3 weeks, it's going to be a blast! L to R, that's Zac Goin, wonderful lighting designer, he took a 19 hour train from NY to get to this tech, Nancy Carlin, extremely talented and busy SF Bay Area director, and Maggie Whitaker, Producer Designer extraordinaire. Maggie takes care of details so I can focus on fun things like contracts and filling seats. Also a hell of a costume designer. Not pictured: Shandee Vaughan, our great stage manager, SHE is from Chicago! No one else on this team is.

Tech looks boring but it's great. It's a bit like going to a soccer game when your kids are playing. You have to sit on a crappy chair on the grass for hours. You have to sit there. After a while, you feel your tensions melt away. You watch. You relax. It's a bit Zen. You can't rush kid's soccer, or a tech.  You gotta sit there. And when you begin to feel you just have to get out of there, pizza appears and you're happy again.

Poster by Kevin Clarke, photo by Cat Gwynn