Tag Archives: the position

Guest Post on LA Stage Blog: PianoFight Secures Its Position in LA Theater

4 Oct

When I first joined PianoFight in San Francisco three and a half years ago I never knew it would grow to the point where it is now. I never knew my involvement in a quirky original little play would grow into a position where I’m spearheading the company’s SoCal expansion.

Come to think of it, why do any of us artists get involved in the projects we do? Is it because we know in X amount of time it will pay us lots of money? Is it because it will make us famous? Is it because we know it will eventually lead to a position of power or creative control?

Well, maybe sometimes but for the most, no it’s not. Hindsight is 20/20 and in the moment all we have is our burning passion to drive us. And oh the places you can go… (read full post here on LA Stage Blog)

Triple Threat

22 Sep

Not the Triple Threat you’d normally think. I don’t mean the magical trio of performing talents: Dancer, Singer, Actor… I’m talking about the other side of the coin: Producer, Director, Writer. In other words, why my life this month has had be so busy I don’t know what day it is.

Pursuing a career in acting is not straight forward. I’m sure if you’re like me and following this path you know that there are a million forks in the road. And that’s a good thing. There is not one way to reach that pot of gold. There are a million. So much of this career is about taking every opportunity presented to you. It is about exploring the different facets of your selected profession. Yes, my initial intent is and always will be to become a Working Actor. Acting, above all, is my passion. And I used to be the kind of actor that immediately shook my head to any talk of writing, directing or producing of my own work. “No,” I’d say, naively at the time, “I’m an actor. I’m not a producer or director and I have no desire to write.”

Well, I was wrong. Fortunately, I figured that out pretty quickly. I am a better actor because I write/produce/direct. And I have a much greater respect for the team it takes to create the art that as an actor I am fortunate enough to just step into.

As a producer, I have learned how to be patient and how to hustle. As a writer, I’ve improved my skills to break down a script, a scene, a character. As a director, I’ve learned to be creative and open when need be and I’ve learned to be precise and decisive when the occasion arises. All of these skills have fostered my growth as an actor– both the actual acting and the career.

This month has been a crash course in these skills, as I have written an original script from the stories and poems of Edgar Allan Poe, I am directing the fall high school production of my original show “Once Upon a Midnight Dreary, I am producing a full-length post-apocolyptic drama called “The Position” for PianoFight and I am acting in a world premiere play about a young girl in search of her mother called Skeleton Stories at Theatre of NOTE.

And guess what? All three shows are in October! Hence, September inSanity!

2 Cities, 1 Show: ShortLived 3.0

13 Jan

As some of you readers may know, I am part of the production company PianoFight. I am incredibly grateful for being involved with them as it has given me the opportunity, not only to act, but to write, direct and produce– not to mention a whole set of amazing friends. At PF, we are very much of the mindset that you make your own success. For example, our playwriting competition incepted in 2008 called ShortLived. This year, ShortLived 3.0, will actually be taking place in TWO cities at the SAME TIME! Craziness. So, without further ado… some self-promotion for this lovely show I will be producing:

Two Hella Awesome Artistic Mecca’s Pick Two Gnarly Grand Champions in One Crazy Dope Cross-Cali Competition: PianoFight’s ShortLived 3.0 … (it’s a really big deal)

LOS ANGELES— January 11, 2010—Premiering April 2nd 2010, SF/LA-based production company PianoFight kicks off its three-month long, audience-judged playwriting competition ShortLived 3.0 in San Francisco and Los Angeles, running every Friday and Saturday night at 8:00 PM at The Off-Market Theater, 965 Mission St (SF) and The Asylum Lab, 6320 Santa Monica Blvd (LA) April 2- June 26. Tickets are $20 at the door and online at http://www.pianofight.com and, as usual, brown bags encouraged.

Local playwrights and theater groups in each city will compete for audiences who decide the winners of the grand prize: the chance to pen a full-length play to be produced by PianoFight for a one-month run in two cities. The LA winner will receive a one-month run in LA at The Asylum Lab, and a second month-run at Off-Market in SF, and the same goes for the SF winner.

Born from a need to fill theater space and a desire to find new work, ShortLived has provided a platform for local artists to be seen, heard and summarily judged by the public. PianoFight selects the top playwright submissions from each city, eight of which are staged and performed each round of the competition.ShortLived 3.0 consists of six total rounds, each lasting two weeks. By scoring the plays on a scale of one to ten, the audience members decide which plays will stay on to the next round and which plays will be “short-lived”. At the end of every round the scores are tallied and the four lowest-scoring plays are replaced by four new plays. The highest scoring piece of each round garners a spot in the Championship Weekend (June 25-26) where the best of the best face off and the top voted piece in each city wins the grand prize: a one month run of an original work produced by PianoFight.

Last year’s competition introduced an opportunity for local theater groups to compete with their own material and actors for a shot at the grand prize. PianoFight will continue this aspect of the competition in both cities. Along with local playwrights, directors and actors, ShortLived 3.0 also features a constantly changing lineup of musical guests.

This year, ShortLived 3.0 features two competitions in two cities, all wrapped into one show. With ShortLived 3.0 running concurrently in SF and LA, audience members in SF will be able to participate with actors in LA and vice versa, through the power of the Internet. The opening piece to every show will feature the return of audience favorite, Xocko The Sock Puppet, reading opposite an actual auditioner (someone PianoFight has never met), and will require participation from the adjoining city, all streamed live via webcams and projected for the audience.

Past ShortLived winners include Daniel Heath, who penned the original “Fork Off On Your Own Forking Adventure Which You’ve Forked: FORKING!” and Bill Bivins, the most celebrated playwright from the 2009 SF Fringe Fest, whose full-length play “The Position” debuts February 4th at Off-Market.

PianoFight’s Artistic and Executive Directors, Rob Ready and Dan Williams respectively, will produce the SF competition, while PF Producing Company Members Nina Harada and Jeremy Mascia will head up the production in LA. Combined Artform’s Matthew Quinn rounds out the producing team.

PiANOFiGHT PRODUCTiONS is an SF-based production company founded by Rob Ready and Dan Wiliams in July of 2007. Teaming with Combined Artform’s Matthew Quinn and Steve Kahn, PianoFight became a managing partner of Off-Market Theaters in 2009. In it’s short two-and-a-half-year history, PianoFight has produced original works, premiered all-new shows, created and developed an online web series, and cut numerous short films, all while remaining true to its commitment of producing new work by new artists. For more information, visit www.pianofight.com.

ShortLived 3.0, a playwriting competition featuring local playwrights and theater groups scored by audiences, runs every Friday and Saturday night at 8PM at The Asylum Lab, 6320 Santa Monica Blvd. (at Vine), Los Angeles and at Off-Market, 965 Mission St (between 5th and 6th), San Francisco, from April 2- June 26. Tickets are $20 at the door and online at http://www.pianofight.com.


SF – Rob Ready – rob@pianofight.com

LA – Nina Harada –  nina@pianofight.com