Saturday, November 22, 2008

International Play Bakeoff

It's midnight in Shanghai, November 23.  It's also 8am in Los Angeles, November 22. I've been invited to join a gaggle of LA playwrights in yet another Great American Play Bakeoff, as invented by ubermentor Paula Vogel. This time, though, it stretches across the time zones.

It's simple. For the next 48 hours, write a play.

The ingredients to be baked into this session's play:
a song
a fall
something that is impossible to stage.

I've synchronize the Shanghai-Los Angeles times, so that I can be writing during the same 48 hours as my playwright hosts: Ken Narasaki, Sujata Bhatt, Jason Fong, Soo-jin Lee, Andrea Apuy, Howard Ho and Sharon Omi. Ken has a friend in Ashland that may be writing along, and my friend Chen Gu in New Orleans might make a bake, too.

So midnight, November 25, I will have a 'play' or a dramatic fragment, or at least something written, where 2 days before, there was nothing. That is the beauty of the bakeoff: it can be as long or as short a piece of work as you like. And, it is both pressure and no pressure, because you feel the heat to write something within the 2 days, but how 'bad' could it be? It was done in such a short time. And that recipe is what allows flashes of ingenuity to emerge: the subconscious rising to the top, revealing itself in a kindly agitated state.

So join on in!

Anyone in this world can be a part of the Great International Play Bakeoff.

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