Written overnight. Rehearsed all Day. Performed once for you.
Twenty-Four Seven is a theatre festival created in 24 hours.
New every time, it is the cornerstone of Whole Theatre.
Here’s how we do it:
The theatrical artists’ gather on Friday evening. A theme for the next night’s show is randomly selected from all the given suggestions – it’s literally pulled form a hat. Then each of the 7 playwrights pull their cast requirements (i.e. 2 woman, 1 man) from the hat, and they pull their special inspirational word from the hat (i.e. Vancouver). The playwrights write overnight.
Early Saturday morning, the new 10 minute scripts are finished. The 7 directors each pull a script (yes, from the hat); and have a hour to confer with the playwright. All the actors arrive. Casting is done by each director blindly selecting names (you guessed it, literally, pulled from a hat). Then, rehearsals begin. And, the hat is retired.
Saturday day is a full rehearsal process with no time to second guess. There is a first read through, blocking, memorizing lines, etc. Simultaneously, lights are focused, sound is mixed, costumes are pinned together, tech, dress, let the audience in.
Saturday night we present a full show of new works – all fully performed and all freshly premiered. 7 new plays all created in the past 24 hours.
Each 24/7 is unique and needs, dare I says wins, its own personal thank you. Here is 2018, a thank-you poem (full or in-jokes) to the artists who made it happen:
Last night was a product of your love and your care
I admire your passion and the talent you share
I miss you already, I hate when it ends
Artists I say, make the best friends.
The dating game was just like money in the bank
The contestants unaware, and the winner was Frank
Then a woman alone talked with a fork and knife,
Until scuba-diving Perry brought love to her life
Soccer friends, on Halloween, in costumes were dressed
Till one jumped from a bridge thinking she was possessed
And a date, what a date, in a garden in our venue
With a hipster couple and a trickster-chef”s menu
Proud parents with children, well wouldn’t you know
They fought to the death! Then one baby read Poe.
Yes, Mr. Whiskers felt lonely, but let’s not be stupid
Sometimes we need help from Pat dressed as Cupid
And in Hollywood, three writers who started from zero,
Proved what we all know, every woman’s a hero
Plus a dance break surprise to watch and to listen,
It was West Coast Swing from your stage manager Kristin
Our designers were amazing! So I say, Hey Team,
Thank you for the gift of 24/7 ‘18.
This show rocks. This crew rocks. They need to. Our 24/7 team has 7 plays to “tech” in just a few hours. Even we don’t know how they do it. Maybe it’s because over 75% of our tech crew teammates are women. Men play football and start wars; women create life and make the world a better place. Just an observation. …Back to the theatre! Come see the magic on Jan 20th.
Maybe we’ve gone too far. You tell me. Don’t these actors have too much talent to be in 24/7? But, here they are in 24/7. Well, maybe they’re each a bit crazy; and maybe that’s just about right. Thanks, you grossly talented bunch of stage-worthiness, you!
Wow is the word. And with the list below, “wow” maybe even be the theme. Well, we don’t know yet if “wow” will have anything to do with this year’s 24/7 theme, but we do know it will describe the plays from these amazing writers taking the 24/7 overnight play writing challenge. Wow:
The directors of 24/7 are often the unsung heroes — unsung, even in a musical. (that’s right, you never know what you’re gonna get in 24/7 – someone might write a musical overnight).
Directors get a random script and random cast and have to make it work. And they do. Oh to the yeah. Year after year.
24/7 is Jan 21, 2017. Nothing will be written until 24 hours before that. Then the directors read their script for the first time Saturday morning. Then the fun, action packed day begins – cast, designers, staging, timing, costumes, set, tech, all in one day.
This year we are honored to have the following great line up of 24/7 directors:
Claire McGurk Chandler
A few things to mention:
Five of these directors will be directing their first 24/7 play.
Tracie brings a designers touch to her directing – watch out!
Chris once told me, “there’s always room for more ‘camp’!” – so watch out for that, too.
Liz and Frank will be performing on stage in Guys And Dolls the weekend before, then turning their talents off-stage for 24/7.
Carol has taught more acting classes than anyone at Live Arts, but this is her first 24/7.
Richard jumped in hear first to 24/7 last year as and actor; and now feet first, from a higher level, he’s doing it again.
Claire’s not scared of anything. As an actor, she has had some of the wildest roles in 24/7 history — including a big box store worker singing ballads about adult diapers to a post-modern-pre-appocalyse-cafe-server-dominatrix-type-person.
Nothing’s written in stone. Well, not anymore (I mean, at one time it was, in a literal sense.) But, what I meant was, “nothing is written in stone, yet.” No, that’s not quite it, either.
I meant, Nothing Is Written… Yet!
24/7 is Jan 21, 2017. Nothing will be written until 24 hours before that. The writing starts Friday night for our Saturday night shows. But when it is written, it will be written by this amazing line up of overnight sensations:
A few things worth pointing out:
Marija will be writing for two (she will be 8 months, 3 weeks pregnant for this 24/7)
UVA will be well represented with two faculty members this year, Doug and Cady.
Three time 24/7 actor Lee Susen picks up the laptop to give playwriting a go-go.
Live Arts founding member Larry Goldstein returns to 24/7.
First time that two plays will come from one household: Bryan and Cady.
Four new playwrights this year: Bryan, Cady, Lee and Marija.
And three who have written once before, Doug, Lance, Larry.