As you may know, I am on the board of a small, but vibrant, theatre company called On the Square Productions. We are hosting our first — and hopefully — annual gala and I’m inviting you! I hope you will join us and celebrate the first five years of this gutsy group of actors, directors, playwrights, and producers. There will be food, music, and a fine wine tasting, and a silent auction featuring my photography. You can view the photos up for auction at www.otspgala2013.tumblr.com
Over the years, On The Square Productions has helped dozens of playwrights develop and present their work, produced a litany of readings, and mounted numerous shows, including The Minervae last summer and, most recently, a workshop of The Snow Queen.
The Minervae was performed outdoors, transforming Athens Square Park, in Astoria, into a small outpost in the 300 A.D. Roman Empire, to inaugurate the Astoria Free Theatre Project. Passersby, even those who spoke little or no english, sat mesmerized by the performance. In fact, OtSP packed the park, even while actors competed with blaring ice cream trucks, a thundering elevated subway, and the frenzy of an adjacent playground.
Despite being a workshop, OtSP packed the house again with The Snow Queen, which transported audience members to 1930s tenement New York, in a haunting adaptation of the Hans Christian Andersen classic. We are hoping to push forward with this show, which has been developed from its inception wholly within the company.
The company also hosts industry networking events and mentors the senior community through an outreach program at University Settlement.
Needless to say, this company has guts, but lacks funds.
The Minervae, by the way, cost more than $9,000 to produce, and that’s not counting costs of insurance, dues, storage, etc, and the show was just one of many things this company does for its community, that is, the neighborhood and the independent theatre community at large.
Now, I’ve never been really good at asking for money from friends, and I hope you never feel like I’m exploiting our friendship, but I’m asking for your support to help this spirited company continue its work. I promise this is a very worthy cause.
The gala is Monday, June 3rd, at Moore Brothers Wine Company, from 6pm till 8:30pm! Tickets are $95.
Please visit www.OntheSquareProductions.com for more information and upcoming events.
And, if you can’t make it, please consider a donation to the company: www.OnTheSquareProductions.com/donate
I hope you can make it — and thank you for your support!
There’s been another bias attack against a gay man in New York City, just a short distance from Christopher Street, in Greenwich Village. This time a man pulled a gun and shot a gay man in the face. The victim later died. Hate crimes against the gay community is almost double what it was last year, but of course those are just the cases reported, which are usually fewer than actually occur.
It’s sad. I remember—when marriage equality was an illusion, when DADT repeal was just a whisper—when it was a defiant act to hold hands, almost willing some sort of abuse or rebuke. Then it became commonplace. Now I think again, “will holding hands threaten my life?”
Dramatic? Maybe. But this latest hostility shows that simply being gay can be dangerous. Sad. But true.