Tuesday, January 6, 2009

2008 Review: What I Wrote – The Lattice Crashes

Even as Teena and I fell out, I was getting geared up for another ambitious project, grounded by a modern-day hate crime. This project was to have homophobia, racial tension, and class conflict galore, and really give me a platform to share some of my own social and cultural hang-ups.

I took a leap with the subject matter, setting it in the distant future, which gave me lots of room to play. I was trying to look at today from a removed vantage point, trying to take every conflicting position at face value, and I didn’t want to villainize anyone.

My historical characters – the hate crime victim, the accused assailant, and their parents grapple with the horrific events that bind them together, but they also struggle to understand themselves as relics, as far removed from a clear and present reality. They emerge, future-shocked in a world they don’t understand, and a world that doesn’t really understand them either. After a few rewrites, I think I’ve finally gotten it about right.

2008 was a “development year,” for the Lattice Crashes.

-I hashed the first draft of the scrip in my playwriting fellowship with Edward Pomerantz (one of the lead teachers in the Harlem Arts Alliance/Columbia University/New Federal Theater Dramatic Writing Fellowship)

-I got some scene excerpts performed with Freedomtrain Productions.

-I did a full reading with the River View Players.

Any dramatic writer will tell you these experiences are invaluable in the birth of a new play. Performers, directors, readers, and audiences have provided great feedback for various elements of the work in progress.

The outcome is a stronger tighter version of the Lattice Crashes that I cannot wait to bring to the stage in 2009. More on that a bit later, but for now, it’s time for some thank you’s:

Andre Carrington
DuEwa Frazier
Bryan Glover
Patricia Golden
Rhonney Greene
Tanya Hartwell
Elizabeth Herron
Laurence Holder
Aymar Jean
Aaron Joy
Andre Lancaster
Teresa Michelle Lasley
Clinton Lowe
Meredith Pierce
Edward Pomerantz
Shanae Sharon
Kelvin Summerhill
Emmitt Thrower
Mona Washington
Bridgette Wimberly
Darius Wilkins
And everybody I forgot...

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