Thank you all for joining us for the radio broadcast version of Objects in the Mirror by Charles Smith, directed by Allen Gilmore! This has certainly been a season capping production like no other, and we hope you have a chance to listen in on Charles and Allen’s conversation with WOUB reporter Emily Votaw to hear their take on this unique experience.
We began this spring with veteran Chicago area director Chuck Smith planning to revisit his original 2017 Goodman Theatre staging of Objects in the Mirror here in Athens, joined by professional actor Allen Gilmore reprising the role of John. Chuck had to withdraw due to unforeseen circumstances, but we were fortunate that Allen agreed to step into the role of director. When actor Gary Kayi-Fletcher, recently seen in Tantrum’s fall production of Rhinoceros, graciously accepted the role of John, we began rehearsals energized and excited to bring this production to life.
In mid-March, in what was an uncertain moment nationally, Allen invited us to sit in on the first rehearsal room run-through of the show. We left that rehearsal inspired by the quality of storytelling taking place, but operations quickly halted, as the very next day the pandemic virus response began to close down the state. We quickly decided that although we were not able to produce the live stage version, we could not allow the opportunity to share this story escape. Eventually, a partnership with WOUB developed and this fully produced audio version of the play became a reality. We are delighted to be working with WOUB radio in what we hope will be the first of many collaborations.
Objects in the Mirror sound designer and School of Theater faculty member Steven Leffue accepted the additional role of recording engineer. Our cast transitioned to remote online rehearsals to prepare for recording, which was accomplished over 3 days, with detailed editing extending another 2 weeks. Finally, Steven Leffue and Allen Gilmore collaborated on additional sound effects. Throughout this process we have learned things that we expect will continue to help Tantrum Theater deliver professional theater in Southeast Ohio through creatively challenging media.
To that end, we have also migrated our summer class offerings to digital online versions! Tantrum Kids (for artists aged 10-13) will take place June 1-5 and an exciting new partnership with the creators of The Girl Project titled Gen Z (for pre-college and high school students) is scheduled from June 8-19. This two-week course is a grassroots art-meets-activism program in which participants are empowered to tell their own stories through spoken word, theater-based movement, and writing techniques. It culminates in an original online theatrical performance that reshapes the representation of young people in American media culture. Visit the Tantrum Theater education page to enroll now.
And, finally, we are excited to announce Tantrum Theater’s 2020-2021 season. In the fall we will bring you Our Country’s Good by Timberlake Wertenbaker, directed by Ameenah Kaplan, currently scheduled for an opening date of Nov 20, 2020. In the spring of 2021 will present the musical Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812, by OHIO alumnus Dave Malloy, scheduled to open on April 2, 2021. Tantrum Theater will be one of the first to produce this thrilling musical since its Broadway production. We are well aware that alternate methods of delivery may be required due to social distancing restrictions, so stay in touch at tantrumtheater.org.
We hope that you will join us on WOUB radio, FM 91.3, at 8pm May 31st for the broadcast of Objects in the Mirror and that it may serve to bring a small bit of quality theater during this troubling time. We are thankful to have been able to share this experience working on creative solutions with our amazing cast, designers, and crew (many of whom worked very hard on the canceled staged production). We all have been challenged to think smarter, be flexible, and as a result, discover a new/old way of making connections with you, our audience.
Interim Producing Director