catch up: Theatrical Impression: 14/48 Festival 2nd Weekend

January 26, 2014

Photo of Peggy Gannon as emcee, from the 14/48 blog.

Best 14/48 I’ve attended so far. Most scripts were fun, delicious, and well-crafted from start to finish. Some seemed slow and a couple of choices (plots, characters, etc.) were weak, but that’s the greatest part about this show is because there are so many plays to choose from! It’s okay even if 3 are bad because that’s not even half.

My buddy C. “Meaks” Meaker (writer of Buckshot produced by Macha Monkey Productions and the upcoming Chaos Theory which will be at Annex April 18-May 17) was a virgin for this weekend of 14/48. They had attended several times, but had never participated.

And oh man, did they participate. On Friday night, they did a crowd pleaser that was well done and well-placed within the line-up. It felt like they had just said, “fuck it, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity” so they used a gun and explosions. Just for funsies. Their show on Saturday took it up a level by interpreting the theme more subtly than others and including some more pleasers like sword fighting. So even when it was getting more serious, they took it back to a fun place and let the audience feel like they had genuinely experienced an encapsulated moment of theatre.

There were some other strong pieces in the night, but others felt slow. I imagine that’s one of the more difficult feats to accomplish among all of the chaos: getting a proper run-through scheduled in during the day. Actors can run lines, but working on pacing for the overall piece must be nearly impossible.

The following night, Saturday, I found myself less impressed. Friday had been strong, with just a couple of weak moments. Saturday made callbacks to Friday (not fun for those who could only attend one day) and felt not as fun overall.

It’s hard to pinpoint why some nights and performances are not as strong as others. There are so many factors that go into these wild weekends, that by the time the audience steps in, no one’s even sure what’s going to happen. But that’s what makes 14/48 fun. I enjoyed this weekend especially of all the times I’ve gone and now I’m looking forward to going to it again.

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