Who will play Dorothy Day’s culmination?

The search is on for an actress to play Dorothy Day in “Dorothy Day and Cesar Chavez Answer Your Letters from Jail,” a new play.
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She must be at this stage of life, and ready to open up the depth of her experience, while speaking Dorothy Day’s words in answer to letters sent to the 21st century visages of Dorothy and Cesar Chavez in jail.
We time hop Dorothy’s last arrest to now, as jail gives the legendary friends the luxury of time to grapple with questions of today in bins of letters they receive.
A new protest singer serenades, and a jailer attempts to keep things by the book under pressure to crack down.
We will be seeking the right Latino man to play Cesar, too, but for now we are looking for a director (preferably female) and a septuagenarian to be Dorothy Day.

Finally in Iowa – Part 2

The Feast of Jovi Bono is about a lot of things, not the least of which is…dinner. Three days of performances after hours upon hours of rehearsal, and we launched Estherville Community Dinners. The first one is Apr. 24 at the Estherville VFW (they have graciously donated their space on the last Monday of the month as part of their ongoing community service).

This is what we do. We develop a story, we act it with the best artistry possible, and we perform it , and then we live it. Now and into the future.

 

Finally in Iowa (part 1)

We did it! The chef, Jovi, Adrian, Malcolm, Kevin, Olivia, Zara, Kat, Tawny & Deb were all on stage. Audience feedback was terrific. For the first time in Iowa, we did it. Our presenters, Excel! Estherville Arts & Culture connected us with Luke Slaughter, a diligent tech director.

The production was fraught with issues, beginning with our director getting transferred to Wyoming and various cast members having life-searing family and personal issues.

The point of art, as with many ventures, is to never, ever, ever, ever give up. And we didn’t. A director from New York, originally from Iowa, made a wonderful suggestion that perhaps the work could be presented as a workshop, with a focus on audience talkback. We present the story and a great audience experience¬†(thanks to Ed Peterson, the Estherville Lincoln Central School District, and a bevy of high school students earning purple cord hours for the amazing set) and from there build a production just for Iowa.

It’s much harder to get a presentation in Iowa than in New York and Boston, until you begin asking for help. Then in some ways it is easier, but still monumental. I cannot get over my gratefulness at the energy shown by the actors and our backstage crew.

The issues and crunch of time made some things imperfect, but were we not put on the earth as artists to have perfection emanate from our fingertips. We were put on earth to scale each wall, to march into each fray with fearlessness, or with a modicum of fear, but the knowledge that it would all be what it was meant to be.

I spent years on the script, and do rewrites and edits each year to make it magnificent. Audiences and cast members fall in love, and that’s also the intent.

Work harder than everyone else. Be fearless. Climb the mountain. Move the obstacles.

Yes, develop your technical prowess, too.

That. That is theater. That is art. Keep going.