Announcement: Reading of the First Act of The Jade Stalk

September 20
8:00pm – 9:30pm

The Other Change of Hobbit bookstore
3264 Adeline Street (two blocks south of Ashby BART)

This is a reading of the first act only of The Jade Stalk, a play in progress by David Scott Marley, based on the novel by Jonathan Fast.

The play takes place in seventh-century China and is based loosely on historical people and events. It’s a dark, sexy comedy about Empress Wu and a young, lowborn swindler she takes as her lover and elevates to high rank.

The first act contains a lot of frank sexual situations. This is just a reading, with actors standing and reading from the script, so there won’t be any actual nudity (unless the actors get really carried away). Still, you may not want to bring young children or anyone who would be shocked.

PLEASE EMAIL ME (David Scott Marley) if you’d like to come! Space is limited and I want to be sure to have a chair for you. You can send me a message through Facebook or email me at scratchings at mac dot com.

We’ll read through the first act, which I expect to take about 40 to 45 minutes. (If it takes longer than that, then I’ll know I have some trimming to do!) We’ll take a short break, and then I will invite you to share with me your reactions. I’m most interested in these things: what you enjoyed, what didn’t work for you, how you feel about the intermission being at this point in the story, and what you’re expecting to happen next. I expect that to take another half hour or so. We’ll probably be finished by 9:30 pm.

Later: The first act is running overlong, so if I haven’t trimmed it down to size by the day of the reading, it may take 50 to 60 minutes.

Readers (in order of speaking):

  • LILAC/SINGING GIRL: Kelly Powers
  • HUAI-I, THE BOXER: Christopher P. Kelly
  • THE KOREAN/FALSE BRUSH: Mark Hernandez
  • PRINCESS CH’IEN-CHIN: Meghan Dibble
  • PRINCESS T’AI-P’ING: Kelcey Poe
  • HSÜEH SHAO: Wayne Wong

Macbeth Again

Dave and I saw Macbeth at CalShakes again last night. Wow. The show has gotten much sharper and clearer all around since we saw it at the last of the previews. Everything ties together better, the characters’ throughlines are all more sharply defined. The significantly trimmed script doesn’t feel quite as rushed as it did (though it still moves awfully fast) and we do have time now to see the MacB’s make the journey from awe at their good fortune to the sense that the good fortune is no less than their due, to resentment that their share of good fortune is still not large enough and willingness to murder allies and friends if it might get them a larger portion. We seemed to speed toward the murders too fast before to know who the MacB’s were before ambition took control of their souls; this time we got to see it.

The acting all around is more polished and secure, except maybe for James Carpenter who was already there in the preview; now the rest of cast is up to that level all the way through the play. Particularly powerful performances by Jud Williford as MacB, Stacy Ross as Lady MacB, and Craig Marker as MacDuff.

Keys Found on BART to Millbrae

I posted this on Craigslist this morning and I’m posting it here too in hopes that it’ll double the chance of being able to find it in a search:

I see you nearly every morning in the first car of the Millbrae train that leaves Richmond at 6:27 am. You’ve got reddish blond hair, usually casually dressed. We both get on in the East Bay and we are among the few who stay on the train past San Francisco — you get off in South San Francisco and I stay on till Millbrae. This morning I was sitting right behind you, and as I got off, I noticed a set of keys on the seat where you’d been. I took them, figuring I’ll see you tomorrow morning and I can give them back to you then. But if you see this, maybe we can figure out how to get them back to you today.

Keywords: lost keys, keys lost on BART, found keys, keys found on BART, key ring, Tumi, journey, pocket knife

My email address is the name of this blog at mac dot com.

Later: I returned the keys to their owner a few days later.