After years of speculative feature film writing besides tv pilot scripts, it's nice to return to the basics, the theatre. So, I expect to be re-working 1) my adaptation musical DAVID the Anointed, with my own music and lyrics. 2) The Bridge Experiment a one act Sci Fi play. And 3) being inspired by Uncle Sherman's famous night club, the musical - At The STORK.
Still, I am very proud of past fictional prose works as author of George Turner’s Ghost a published novel, and The Rolling Brothers a play with my Country Rock music. which was produced while a member of the Schoolhouse Theater Workshop in Croton Falls, New York. Also, at the Schoolhouse Playwrights Workshop, I played the role of 'The Singing Cowboy' for Doug Michael’s award-winning play The Geldings, where I wrote the music to four of his song lyrics, besides arranged and sang them. As to my award-winning screenplays Actor Master Showman and Dancing with Spies, they were wonderfully fulfilling experiences of 2017-18.
If you would perhaps like to connect with me on either INSTAGRAM or LinkedIn, it would be a pleasure.
So, best of luck to you, and God's blessings to all.
Two ex-KGB spies (Olga and Mr. KG) show up at Betty Fagan's social dance event in Greenwich Village to nail down purchase of Betty and husband Willy's dance business and building in the Village. However to Willy and Betty a deal braker could be the Russians insistance that the couple must now set up and run (for a month) Syndicate's new dance studio and night club in Havana, Cuba. Later ... "Can Willy with limited experience in real spy work, rise to the challenge and help agents obtain a four centuries old golden globe once owned by Queen Isabella of Spain?". Add to this that Willy is drafted into role of Blues Dance Instructor for the club under very strange circumstances.
So lets have some fun gawking at the beautiful dancers, learn the American Triangle Dance Method and enjoy time in Havanna, Cuba with our unusual and comical American, Russian and Cuban spies.
Radio comedy theater production with original Country Rock Music - the story - After an exhausting late night recording session (two songs are on play CD in scene one.) the Rolling Brothers Band is ready to crubble apart as a result of next day Bobbie Rolling (lead guitar player and song writer) running off with beautiful Linda Ravallo, the bands' primary vocalist. Yet sad as this may seem, something strange and exciting follows when Kevin (the keyboard player who also happens to play peddle steel guitar) discloses to remaining band mates that he had rearranged Les Rolling's garbage song Red Head Baby months ago and submitted it to the Red Boar Beer Song Contest. Now to everyones shock the song Red Boar Baby has a realistic chance of winning the contest if they can succeed with next phase, the important beer company executives's final contest interview. So please come along with us off and on tour with the colorful Les Rolling and the Corderoys into stardom, havoc and misadventures, especially when one considers the band's eventual "bad boy" opportunites and antics.
The Story Line of Actor Master Showmen (AMS)
Banished from his country and broken hearted, English Actor Thaddeus Bridgnorth arrives in the grand city of Charleston, South Carolina (1825). Through theatre roles and tutoring, he weaves into the elite Ashley River plantation culture. But alas fate will turn another hard page when Thaddeus and Annie Banjo are sold into the colorful but dangerous world of Bailey’s Circus traveling north.
How The Story Came About.
The first spark for this story started some six months after attending a John Jay Homestead conference “The Abolitionists”, probably around 2002. While in attendance one of the conference ladies saw on my name tag that I was from Somers, and thought I might be interested to hear that a free black man of Somers named Gilbert Horton in 1825 was seized and imprisoned in the District of Columbia. At the time he would have been sold into slavery had it not been for the untiring advocacy and legal skills of Judge William Jay, the son of Founding Father, John Jay of Bedford. Not long after, reviewing historic materials on the subject at the John Jay Homestead, I started to wonder, what was this free colored man from Somers doing in the Nation’s Capitol, a slavery haven? And Washington was then surrounded by slave states ready to enforce the Fugitive Slave Act to their advantage. Then I thought, “What if Gilbert Horton had been involved with the traveling circus and menagerie business of Somers?". At the time Somers folks were known to travel the east coast on caravan wagon tours all the way to New Orleans, Louisiana besides of course D.C along the way. Well, if I was to find more factual fuel and passion for something that I would like to write, being a tour guide at the Jay Homestead would give me an intimate knowledge and special feeling of place concerning the Jay Family legacy. So by fall of 2003, I wrote a letter to The John Jay Homestead National Historic Landmark Site (close by to my home in the Somers) and requested that I be allowed to train as a historic site tour guide. By that time, I was an accomplished historic educator for the Somers Historical Society of which I had been a past president.
While researching and writing early sketches, I found the menagerie circus people to be wonderful colorful contrast to the genteel reserved Jays of Bedford. But were their any deeper connections and contrasts? Years ago I had studied about the Elephant Hotel another National Landmark but in Somers, built in 1825, a true circus mecca for its time. In any case, as a writer I felt creative historic fiction writing always had that 'what if quality' to lacking factual context.. Luckily I had already written a book, an historic fiction ghost story “George Turner’s Ghost” using my Mount Zion Historic Cultural Landscape research for deep story context. And I confess, I really don't mind after a lot of research, to then jump deep into fictional dream zone of my imagination.
But you might ask “Where in the heck did you come up with the Thaddeus Edward character?”. Well even though factually, I had a wonderful year of historic research at the Homestead, I bombed with Gilbert Horton as the possible main character in early sketches. So to distract this turmoil, I read a lot about the time period. Then another year went by, and I was still drawing blanks. Well it must be time to take a trip! So south with my daughter Alyssa we went to Charleston, South Carolina and Savannah, Georgia. In the past I had loved to study about great American historic districts, and these were two of the best. While in Georgia, I came across a small book about Denmark Vesey and the slave rebellion. Also I found fasinating references concerning Charleston’s love of the exotic circus and Shakespeare productions. then on a lark, I googled for any information on Shakespeare’s plays and the 1820’s time period. And Bingo! Edmond Keane popped up. I wondered what kind of friends might this character have? Continuing my google tasks, I found a msssive amount of information with biographies about the actor, Mr. Kean.
As to my way of writing historic fiction, it was important to have a main character for the narritive journey with their discovery of people, places and things. So, I experimented with a new main character who would come from England and discover Charleston, and later the American circus. Success at last! In addition there was another research detour about Charleston and New York State history of slavery during the 1820’s. Here I can thank my mom for all my Somers Circus history knowledge, for I recalled James Wright a Somers native-son who during the 1820s probably traveling with his brothers on circus tours that stopped in Charleston. As to fact James Wright became a resident of South Carolina, a banker and a plantation slave owner. By the end of James Wright's life, he resided in Mississippi, and by 1864 he was the fifth largest slave owner (with 600+ humans in bondage) for the State of Mississippi.
Coincidently later I moved to the Charleston area around 2007 for a year, and loved to visit the gracious beautiful city, besides visiting many of the plantations in the area. Yet alas, there were my own tragedies to address with my wife and I splitting up. Unfortunately for a few years I went into a severe depression. Therfore the A M S was buried in my head. 'But still during this strangely remorseful time I learned to dance. Upon returning to Somers brieflly a friend asked, “So did you have a girlfriend down in the Charleston?” Shaking my head I answered, “No I fell in love with the City of Charleston and the beautiful Ashey River Region. As time passed thankfully I recovered and finished a rough A M S script. Now by February 2018, I had finished my Actor Master Showmen screenplay!
What else am I going to write?
Two ex-KGB spies (Olga and Mr. KG) show up at Betty Fagan's social dance event in Greenwich Village to nail down the purchase of Betty and husband Willy's dance business and building in the Village (ny). However to Willy and Betty, a deal breaker could be the Russians insistence that the couple must now set up and run (for a month) Syndicate's new dance studio and night club in Havana, Cuba.
Later ... "Can Willy rise to the challenge and help agents obtain a four centuries old golden globe memorializing Queen Isabella of Spain?". Add to this that Willy is drafted into role of Blues Dance Instructor in Cuba for the club undermore than strange circumstances.
So in any case, lets have some fun gawking at the beautiful dancers, learn the American Triangle Dance Method and enjoy our time in Havana, Cuba with the interesting, unusual and sometimes comical American, Russian and Cuban spies.
Part II - Dancing with Spies, which follows The Play of Part I, deals with Olga and Willy's prior lives prior to the 'Dancing with Spies' play.
Part III - Dancing with Spies 'Thereafter' involves Willy and Olga in their further adventures working for the amazing CTFU Cuba group. William has now recently joined CTFU assisting Olga and Lucy 'the Cuban' on theit secret and not so secret missions.