I kept a sort of journal through out this dramaturgical process. Below are my weekly entries:
Over the summer, I reunited with my high school best friend. Back in our glory days, we were the starlets of our high school. Between the concerts, plays, musicals, and talent shows, we had a monopoly on talent at Kittatinny Regional. Come graduation, we had come across a fork in the road. We could pursue a career in performing, or we could choose a path far more practical and fruitful in something academic like political science. I chose the former; she chose the latter. Three years later, she misses the fun of performing and I miss the intellectualism found only in research and bookwork. I think it’s safe to say that as I dive into the script of Martin Crimp’s Attempts on her Life, my longing for cerebral activity will soon be satisfied.
I’ve realized that this dramaturgical process will not be the traditional type. I believe that a dramaturg for a show like Grapes of Wrath or Side Show could dig through history books and national archives to validate the words and actions of a production’s characters. However, AOHL is not that easy. When I first learned I was dramaturging this show, I was stricken with anxiety and puzzled about what I was even dramaturging. AOHL is not traditional in its structure: there is no plot, no characters, no setting, no conflict, no resolution, and it is unclear whether the subject of the text is a protagonist or antagonist. In fact, the subject of the text is absent completely from the on stage action. After initial read-throughs, though, my anxiety has been alleviated. As I heard actors stumble over unfamiliar words, it became clear what my initial role in this production would be. I immediately began highlighting my script and scribbling down notes and lists of people, places, words, and things to explain, define, and research. I realized that my job (at least for the first few weeks) would be to make the script more accessible to the cast. It also dawned on me that I would need a means with which to share this information in a quick and organized fashion with the cast and crew. I decided to create a blog (aohl.tumblr.com) to share multimedia information in a way that the actors could access it on their own time. Tumblr also allows others to ask me questions and share posts of their own. I’m confident that this will be a wise means to complete my work at the show’s dramaturg.