NY Summerfest – 1,000 supporters/$10

One thousand.

That’s the number of supporters we seek to make Maximalista at NY Summerfest happen.

Watch the video:

Why do we need upwards of $10,000?Because we want to pay the human beings who make this possible a living wage for their 60 or more hours of rehearsal and the immense prep time it will take to make this the amazing experience we know it can be.

Because this may be The Big One and lead to a full-length, full run in New York City.

Because we want to partner with the best people on the ground innovating new ways to deal with people who have mental illness.

Because this is a model case for projects all over the nation and perhaps beyond.

Because so many hours and so much love has already gone into this show.

Because we’re ready to transform the world.

#MentalHealthPlay goes to NY Summerfest!

mentalhealthplayWe’re in!

The amazing news: #MentalHealthPlay is part of NYSummerfest to be performed Labor Day weekend, Sept. 1 at 1 p.m. and Sept. 2 at 6 p.m. in the beautiful Hudson Guild Theater, at 441 W. 26 St.(between 9th and 10th Avenues).

I keep picturing it in a show tent with bleachers or something, and then I pinch myself to remember it’s in a fantastic theater and this is really happening.

The challenge: Festival rules say we have to show it with a whole new cast after its run at Manhattan Rep Theatre in September-October, 2017.

Rehearsing a new cast for 60 hours, paying actors, directors and crew for their deep presence, acquiring props, some costumes, comp tickets for industry pros at $23/each, and developing the social justice project — even a minimalist budget feels pressured.

Can you feel the pulse of this show making a second, larger burst onto the scene? Will you be part of delivering this project from idea to experience?

Cammerron Baits (the director) and I believe with our souls in this project. We invested blood, sweat and tears into the original project. Time was a big crunch for the Manhattan Rep run (but Huffington Post and Broadway World gave it big love). The one-act needs more audience, more love, more space and time and a new cast will give it a fresh look and attract industry pros.

We’re looking for one love. The person who can and will invest in it, take a risk for this show to have a full length, full run in NYC followed by a tour. We’ll bring back some of the original #MaxFam and some of our second cast who invest in it.

We’re looking for a community to each invest what you can to make it happen. Watch for a crowd-funding effort to cover the initial costs of rehearsal space and related expenses, then a big push over the summer to do it all.

Bottom line: $5,000 bare bones. Anything above that allows us to better invest in the human beings who are devoting time, talent, heart, voice, motion, emotion, and soul.

If you’re an actor in the NYC area, I hope you will submit your stuff for this. Send headshot and resume to cammerronb@gmail.com.

Jed Ryan, writing for the Huffington Post, picked up the unique visual elements and individual performances as well as the whole.

Take a dive with us. Be part of this adventure.

 

Going to Barbados for “On the Block”

April 26, I will be in Barbados as part of a week-long visit. I aspire to photograph the unique natural world of the island, to get to talk to locals.

However, the pinnacle of the trip happens on the last full day: seeing students from Barbados Community College participate in the first public production of “On the Block” by Glenville Lovell. 

Screen Shot 2018-03-23 at 6.01.40 PMLovell is perhaps the most noted writer/creator from Barbados. A playwright, dancer and novelist, Lovell grew up in a chattel house. These structures were built “on the block” and the entirety of the house, including the blocks, could be picked up and moved as landlord-tenant relationships changed or employers migrated their sugar cane operations.

I’ve been assigned a photo-essay about the production by a U.S. theater publication and seek more outlets for the documentary of this beautiful experience.

“On the Block” was the winner of the Frank Collymore Endowment Award in 2010, but has yet to be performed in public.

It has already been a beautiful experience communicating with David and Rosemary of The Gap Theatre in Barbados.

The play happens at the Daphne Joseph Hackett Theatre in Queen’s Park, Bridgetown, which was closed for 12 years until its reopening in 2017.

#MaxFam @ Drake postponed

The students who make up Drake Theatre People and I have decided to postpone the reading of Maximalista #MentalHealthPlay until Mental Health Awareness Week in October, 2018.

With great love for their efforts, and their stated desire to house this play, the New York cast and I continue developing it in the interest of shining a light on what one person can do for people who struggle with mental illness.

This postponement does not mean you couldn’t go sign up for Mental Health First Aid class where you are and become part of the greater solution to the mental health crisis.

With gratefulness…

Extended run!

Maximalista, the #MentalHealthPlay, is having an extended run at Manhattan Rep Theatre on West 45th Street in New York City!

The cast became #MaxFam, and the show was full of miracles. Well-known punk rocker Rew Starr became our Star as Davi. The actors have said it was meaningful to them to be part of it. We were in Broadway World, and there may well be a review in a very well-known publication.

Director Cammerron Baits went beyond anything I had dreamed as far as an original and provocative interpretation of my script.

Here’s what audience members had to say about our first run:

“A Wonderfully Balanced show about a woman struggling with mental illness and hyper sexuality. With the strong Direction by Cammerron Baits and impeccable sensibilities of the cast led by Rew Starr that will have you laughing in all the right places.” Ken Wolf -Artistic Director

“Great direction and top notch actors” Nick Cartusciello- Another Director whose brilliant work in “The Latch Key Kid” is also featured in the festival

“What a great performance from the cast of Maximalista! Heartfelt and funny from beginning to end. A must see!” Rosselyn Alemany

With an extension, and it’s such an honor, but it comes with additional, unexpected expense. Hence, we’re running a quick (very quick — we go up again Friday and Saturday the 6th and 7th) crowd-funding effort here: http://gofundme.com/mentalhealthplay/

If you can help, we appreciate all the co-producers we can get. If you can share in your social networks, do that. Much love. We’re so grateful for all the support so far, and we sent much love.

On with the show!

#MentalHealthPlay has a cast!

Director Cammerron David Baits, who went through 389 submissions, called about ten percent of those, and cast 25 percent of those. So these actors are the top one-fourth of the top ten percent of all who submitted.

I’m so grateful that so many people saw something in this work and wanted to be part of it.

Punk rocker, host, composer, etc. Rew Starr is starring as Davi.

Cammerron said of the first rehearsal: It is always nerve wracking starting your “first day of school.” Today I began rehearsals for “Maximalista”. I am so proud of my cast. I don’t have a ” Normal” style of directing, but they are on this journey with me. In two hours we did two read through a and have explored two scenes to the point of it being on it’s feet we have a long ways to go but are off to a great start! Cannot wait for tomorrow’s rehearsal. There was even a moment between Lisa Goldin Rabinowicz and Rew Starr tonight that gave me chills, and this only day one! I couldn’t be more proud! Alex TaylorClaire Friesen Travis Schweiger Julia Neveu so happy to have you on board! And could not do this without my stage manager Elizabeth F Amato!

 

#MentalHealthPlay cast&directors