This week: Noah interviews writer Ruth McKee, one of the core members of LA's Chalk Repertory Theatre, about her latest play 'In Case of Emergency.' The conversation ranges from the themes of the play itself, to how McKee's writing process is driven by a sense of space. A great, into the artistic meat of it, kind of episode.
All that, plus the news and notes-- and a call for feedback.
THIS MONTH'S EPISODES ARE BROUGHT TO US BY OUR FRIENDS AT DRAFTY-APP.COM
If you've been following the LA scene you have probably heard of Screenshot Productions, or at least their work: the company popped up during last year's spooky season with the solo haunt "Fear Is What We Learned Here" and since then have mutated into something... unique.
Screenshot founder Nicholas Sherwin Jr. and his partner Meghan Farrington sit down at No Pro headquarters with host Noah Nelson to talk about crafting one-on-ones, taking the step beyond extreme haunts and food. What? We're human. Humans talk about food. (Trust us, it makes total sense in context.)
All that plus your news and some notes that take us beyond theatre.
Brought to you by our friends at Drafty. The Computer Aided Design program built from the ground up for theatrical designers by a theatrical designer. Learn more at drafty-app.com
Sophie Bortolussi is the choreographer and co-director of LA's immersive hit The Day Shall Declare It (which just announced an extension). Sophie sits down with host Noah Nelson in the back patio of the show right before a performance in the Arts District of DTLA (so, you know, it's gonna get loud) to talk about the show, how her training with the Martha Graham company led to a career in immersive theatre, and oh yeah: the art of all this stuff.
All that and the usual news and notes, brought to you this month by our friends at Drafty (drafty-app.com): a computer aided design tool for theatrical professionals. (And yes, we explain EXACTLY what that sentence was all about herein.)
Steve Peters, host of The Story Forward Podcast--a show about the future of storytelling and entertainment--joins our own Noah Nelson for this hybrid of both shows. Fun fact: Steve and Noah have known each other for a few years now, but they've never sat down and had a one on one before now.
Another fun fact: Steve isn't just a podcast host, he's also an experience designer. Both with his company No Mimes Media and at other experience design houses Steve has worked on some of the biggest Alternate Reality Games ever. So big that he's still not allowed to mention some of them by name. But you're all some of the world's finest detectives, I'm sure you can figure them out.
Yes, it's a big show--with a big News & Notes to lead us in. One that includes Noah's super fresh impressions of Annie Lesser's 'Apartment 8' at the Hollywood Fringe Fest.
LET'S GET TO IT.
(And thanks for 50 episodes, y'all. Here's to 50 more.)
In this oh so special episode hosts Noah and Zay connect for a little late-night philosophizing over the role of narrative in immersive experiences. This is one you're going to want to pour a drink and mull over.
Content warning: I think we might get a little salty. Frankly, it's been a minute. Better just avoid playing this around kids.
All that and the usual news and notes.
The director of Second Skin, a site-adaptive piece currently performed on the Santa Monica beach, joins host Noah Nelson for a discussion about site-specific theatre. This one gets *philosophical*, but in a totally fun way.
All this plus the usual news & notes.
Zay Amsbury (@zayamsbury) takes over the interview duties this week to talk with Jennine Willet and Elizabeth Carena of Third Rail Projects (@TRPNYC) about the development of the company's latest show The Grand Paradise ahead of its scheduled close at the end of May. Secrets are revealed, ideas dissected, and a rando calls in with some weird story.
All this and the usual news and notes from Noah Nelson on the West Coast.
Noah is back in LA with lessons learned from his NYC trip in this host-only episode.
We kick off with an extended news & notes before leaning into some thoughts on The Grand Paradise, Accomplice, Then She Fell, Sleep No More, how to manage problem guests, and wrap with program notes and a question for you, the No Pro audience.
With Noah in New York City, No Pro's dynamic duo gets to go on an adventure together. They pick Janet Cardiff's 'Her Long Black Hair' an audio walking tour piece from 2004 that feels like it could have been made last week. Set in Central Park, 'Her Long Black Hair' takes listeners on a journey that can leave you feeling like you've slipped the bonds of times.
This episode was recorded in Central Park, NYC.
Access the play: https://phiffer.org/hlbh/
One of our favorite shows of 2015 is returning to the site of its run in LA's Arts District. But what they found might surprise you... or not, if you know the Arts District.
The work to get The Day Shall Declare It back up on its feet for a May 10 bow has begun, and Wilderness founder Annie Saunders takes host Noah Nelson on a tour of the site where they talk about the future fate of the Arts District.
All that plus news, notes, and some advice on how to get in on the pre-sale for The Day Shall Declare It, which starts on April 9th.
Host Noah Nelson (@noahjnelson) takes YOUR questions about the--still emerging--immersive art form.
All that, plus news and a special announcement about a favorite show returning to Los Angeles.
Designer Uriah Findley (@theuriah) has been caught up with some of the most talked about long-form immersive experiences of the last decade. His work with Nonchalance on "The Jejune Institute" was documented in the film "The Institute" and he was instrumental in the building of "The Latitude," which reached its controversial conclusion in San Francisco this Fall.
In the wake of "The Latitude" Findley and game designer Anthony Rocco (@anthrocc) have teamed up to create their own experience design firm: Foma Labs.
Host Noah Nelson talks with Findley and Rocco about the ethics of experience design, how Foma approaches the work, and what lessons they both took away from "The Latitude."
Get your thinking caps on: we get philosophical up in here.
Host Noah Nelson drops in on NoPro SF curator Albert Kong and gets a lesson in Bay Area public/prankster performance art, and a glimpse into how Albert approaches his version of the newsletter. A fun conversation to be sure!
Lauren Ludwig (Hamlet-Mobile, Lost Moon Radio) is the director and adaptor of And The Drum, a movement based immersive in LA's Koreatown that is one part dinner party and two parts exploration of the poetry of Martha Marion. The piece, performed at Marion's own home, is one of the more stunning pieces of work to be staged on LA's immersive scene in the past year.
Ludwig speaks with host Noah Nelson (@noahjnelson) about her process for And The Drum in this fast paced, insightful discussion.
All that and the usual news and notes.
NEW YORK CITY: Zay Amsbury talks with Jennine Willett and Elizabeth Carena of Third Rail Projects, the company behind Then She Fell and The Grand Paradise. Settle in for a history of the company, a SECRET ORIGINS special if you will. (Ed. Note: No one but you will get that reference, Noah.)
In other words: this is the big one. The episode we've been dying to do since the start of the podcast... and we're less than a year old.
All that, plus Noah Nelson has the usual news and notes.
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We go off the beaten path this week to talk to the creators of Escape Room In A Box: The Werewolf Experience, which aims to bring the escape room genre home. The duo behind the game--Juliana Patel and Ariel Rubin--are two stay-at-home moms who love escape rooms but find it increasingly hard to get everything in order to get out to them. So they used their game playing acumen--and their theatre degrees, what???--to create a dramatic, at-home version of the phenomenon.
Come along as we talk about bringing he escape room experience home, and the pitfalls of crowdfunding--something I know more than a few of you have either considered or know a thing or two about yourselves.
Artists Scott Hove and Baker's Son join host Noah Nelson, along with Think Tank gallery Creative Director Jacob Patterson and Arya Davachi--director of Rough Sleeper--which will be using the gallery's Break Bread installation as the backdrop for his show.
The conversation waxes philosophical about the nature of collaboration and the intersection between art installations and immersive theatre.
Rough Sleeper will play out on just two dates--March 3rd and 4th--at the gallery. The Break Bread installation will be open through March 13th.
We talk a lot about Sleep No More and Then She Fell at the margins of this podcast. This week's guest--performer Haylee Nichele--has danced in both shows. We are lucky to count her amongst our friends.
On this week's episode we step through the looking glass and see what the immersive life is like from a performer's point of view. We also nerd out a lot.
Haylee's in Los Angeles these days, so Noah has the hosting duties this week.
In the summer of last year Marike Splint, an incoming theatre professor at UCLA, reached out to us to talk about LA immersive theatre community. Now we visit Marike at her office on campus to talk about her experiences creating immersive performance and what the scene is like in The Netherlands, where she hails from.
It's a fun talk. All that plus a blast of News Notes. (The fastest in ages... the coffee is working!)
This time out host Noah Nelson talks with Paul Stein, creator of The Car Plays and Moving Art's Lem Thornton about the origins of that show. Is it any surprise that there's a "necessity is the mother of invention" moral to the story?
And STICK AROUND after the interview because our intrepid host FORGOT something cool in the News & Notes. Unless you are listening to this after Saturday Jan 30th. In which case: you're too late.
Host Noah Nelson talks with the folks at Play Collaborative Arts (Retrograde, Erotica)--Cole Rosner, Meredith Treinen, and Scott Monahan--about their take on devised work, making immersive theatre with an erotic charge, and the pitfalls of running an underground venue in LA's Arts District.
All that, plus the usual news, notes, and a tease of what's to come.
After a too-long hiatus we are BACK and this time out we've got a special ALL CURATOR edition of the podcast. Noah (LA) and Zay (NYC) are joined by the all-new curator of the SF Edition: Albert Kong.
Together they form Voltron.
Just kidding. That takes FIVE curators.
Together they review the Best of 2015, the biggest surprises of last year, and look forward to what 2016 is going to bring. It's been a great year for immersive theatre and events, and the year ahead promises even more.
ALSO: be on the lookout for the WEST COAST EDITION of No Pro--launching THIS WEEK!
Host Noah Nelson shares a little bit of the regional news, and then big parts of the plan for 2016 for No Pro--including the revised fate of No Proscenium SF!
PUBLICATION NOTE: Both the podcast AND the LA newsletter are taking a break next week. We'll be back in FORCE before Christmas.
The creators of LA's living, experiential literary journal Enter>text, Henry Hoke and Marco DiDomenico, join host Noah Nelson to talk about bringing some immersive spice to the world of literary readings.
Enter>text is a fascinating beast, that proves that you can approach the open frame of immersive work from just about any angle in order to create compelling experiences.
All this, plus some big--albeit tentative--housekeeping news.
Noah travels to the offices of the Think Well Group--experience designers extraordinaire--to talk about the shared worlds of immersive theatre and theme park design with a group of people who are passionate about both.
Vice President of Creative Development Dave Cobb (@DaveCobb) is joined by members of the creative brain trust--Kate McConnell (@AntiKate), Jeremy Thompson (@jkthompson72), and Dana Shaw (@thefakedana)--for a family style discussion that is probably way chiller than what happens at your Thanksgiving table. So come sit with us at the cool kid's table!
Also: Noah waxes POETIC about The Industry's HOPSCOTCH, which Jeremy was kind enough to drag him to when all hope looked to be lost.
More Twitter handles than you can handle:
All of which are there for a reason--just listen to the show already!