1.) The Clean Houseby Sarah Ruhl
A romantic comedy about loss, love, change and redemp-tion, The Clean House is both whimsical and touching. A serious career-oriented doctor, Lane, has hired a quirky Brazilian maid. The only problem is that the maid, Matilde, hates to clean. Instead, she longs to be a comedienne. Lane is deserted by her husband, Charles, who leaves her for his mistress, Ana, a passionate, older Argentinian woman upon whom he recently performed a mastectomy. Sarah Ruhl's enchanting play reminds us that there is humor and beauty to be find in life's most unlikely messes.
2.) The Maidsby Jean Genet
Solange and Claire are two housemaids who construct elaborate sadomasochistic rituals when their mistress (Madame) is away. The focus of their role-playing is the murder of Madame and they take turns portraying both sides of the power divide. Their deliberate pace and devotion to detail guarantees that they always fail to actualize their fantasies by ceremoniously "killing" Madame at the ritual's dénoue-ment.
3.) Eclipsedby Danai Gurira
Amid the chaos of the Liberian Civil War, the captive wives of a rebel officer band together to form a fragile community—until the balance of their lives is upset by the arrival of a new girl. Drawing on reserves of wit and compassion, Eclipsed reveals distinct women who must discover their own means of survival in this chilling and humanizing story of transformation and renewal in a hostile world of horrors not of their own making.
4.) BFEby Julia Cho
Cute blondes are disappearing from her strip mall-covered suburban town, but fourteen-year-old Panny is more concerned with surviving adolescence. Raised by an unbalanced mother who thinks the perfect birthday gift is plastic surgery and a shy uncle who spends most of his time painting miniatures, Panny is afraid she’s hopelessly different. Thanks to a fortuitous misdial, she strikes up a phone friendship that seems to be the connection she’s been longing for.
5.)Circle Mirror Transformationby Annie Baker
Five lost people come together at a community center class to try and find some meaning in their lives. Counting to ten can be harder than you think. Over six tangled weeks, their lives become knotted together in this tender and funny play.
6.) God of Carnageby Yasmina Reza
What happens when two sets of parents meet up to deal with the unruly behavior of their children? A calm and rational debate between grownups about the need to teach kids how to behave properly? Or a hysterical night of name-calling, tantrums, and tears before bedtime? A bitingly funny and whip smart examination of the things we don’t think we teach or children.
7.) 4000 Milesby Amy Herzog
After suffering a major loss while he was on a cross-country bike trip, 21 year-old Leo seeks solace from his feisty 91-year-old grandmother Vera in her West Village apartment. Over the course of a single month, these unlikely roommates infuriate, bewilder, and ultimately reach each other. 4000 Miles looks at how two outsiders find their way in today’s world.
8.) Blastedby Sarah Kane
Blasted opened in 1995, making front-page headlines and outraging some critics who thought her premise that there was a connection between a rape in a Leeds hotel room and the hellish devastation of civil war was simply an attempt to shock audiences. Brutal and graphic, “Blasted” is important but not for the faint of heart.
9.) Ohio State Murdersby Adrienne Kennedy
When Suzanne, an African American writer, enters Ohio State University in 1949, little does she know what the supposed safe haven of academia holds in store. Years later, Suzanne is invited to return to the University to talk about the violence in her writing. A dark mystery unravels. The play is an intriguing, unusual and chilling look at the destructiveness of racism in the U.S.
10.) Stop Kissby Diana Sun
The story is deceptively simple: two young women in New York meet, talk about their boyfriends, feel a growing, unspoken attraction for each other, and finally kiss. And that one innocent kiss sets off a savage gay-bashing. Callie is holding down a job as a radio traffic reporter when she meets Sara, a Midwesterner who, against her parents’ wishes, has moved to the city to teach third-grade students in the Bronx. Both have boyfriends, but as they get to know each other, their shared experiences and sense of humor create a strong bond. The tragic consequences of their kiss—the center of this powerful drama—serve as both an indictment of hatred and a moving study of the perils inherent in living life fully.
1.) Participate in a Play Reading, Online.
If you don't know anyone hosting one, pick a play you've always wanted to read and host it yourself through one of the many conferencing apps that abound. Not only do you get to flex your acting/reading chops, but you get to do it amongst friends!
You can be as fancy with your camera equipment as you want to be, or not. Use your phone! Or even, your actual, analog camera. Take one photo for each day of your isolation. Give yourself a theme, if you want - that seems to help with focus. You can journal around each photo, or get really ambitious and create a poem for each image! Pets can make WONDERFUL subjects...or, find a famous painting, stage it in your home and recreate it via photography.
3.) Work on Your Audition Pieces.
Use your free time to find and memorize new audition pieces. Challenge yourself to find one for every possibility: Classical, Dramatic, Contemporary, Comedic, Shakespearean, 10 bars of two contrasting songs (if you're into musical theatre), Do them in your living room. Do them often. Take a break from sitting at a screen and do your monologue. Take it one further and host a group of your favorite peers to work your pieces in front of each other online! You can focus on a different type (Shakespeare, Contemporary, etc) each virtual meeting, When productions start and auditions come back up again, you'll be able to hit the ground running!
4.) Create an Image Board.
Either break out the magazines and craft supplies and create a physical image board, or go over to Pinterest, create an account, and do it virtually! If you have a show coming up (at SOME point in the future), start working on an image board for it to use going forward when rehearsals begin: if you're an actor, find images pertaining to your character; if a playwright/director/designer/dramaturg, all the things about the whole show! If you're writing a novel, find images pertaining to different aspects of your book. You can also simply create a vision board, and find images pertaining to things you'd like to manifest in the coming days/months/years. Create your dream garden or your dream house through images.
5.) Do Some Planting!
It's spring: perfect time to begin clearing and planting! Plot out spaces in your yard for flowers and vegetables...or start a small herb garden in a window box in your kitchen window, or maybe some strawberries in a planter on your balcony! Plant simply for the pleasure of getting the earth on your hands, or take it a step further and plant intentions with each seed and/or clipping.
6.) In the Kitchen
Cooking and baking are another way to stay inspired, stay connected to your creativity and of course, have some great things to eat! If you're a bit phobic about either cooking or baking, get courageous and follow a couple recipes to the letter - journal about your results, if so motivated! Or, if you're a more experienced chef, try something complicated you've always felt daunted by: sourdough bread? Beef Wellington? Macarons? And of course, take photos and post to social media so everyone can see...
7.) Make Music
Been awhile since you've picked up that guitar? Have a haunting melody disturbing your brain? Maybe it's time to make some music! Open up Garage Band, or any other music creation app, and create a soundscape for your show, workout, or anything you like. Form a virtual band and have a jam session with your favorite creatives using homemade instruments: a jar of beans becomes quick percussion, a hollow box with rubber bands around it becomes a string instrument, a wine bottle becomes a wind instrument - let your imagination run wild! Don't forget the singing and beat-boxing.
8.) Makes Something Visual
People like to say they "can't paint" or "can't draw", but those are only two disciplines under the vast umbrella of visual arts & crafts. Use rubber stamps, or found images. Try doing a paint pour. Or, gather all your hard, flat pieces of junk mail and use them as canvasses for multi-media art-work - using glue, paint, found images, glitter, crayons, whatever you have on hand! Or get an app or coloring book and do some coloring - you'd be surprised how meditative and calming it is! Or paint an accent wall in your house. Prime and paint your car a funky color...paint a wizard on the side of your van! Sky's the limit - You don't have to be super skilled to create something beautiful you can hang on the wall (or post on Instagram)!
9.) Write, Write, WRITE!
What a perfect opportunity to hone your writing chops. Start a journal or a blog - you can either make it general, or focused: I know someone working on a grief journal, someone else working on a poetry journal. A post-apocalyptic blog would be perfect right now, and there's so much inspiration between pop-culture and real life...if journaling isn't your thing, try a form or genre you've never tried before: start a play...make it social, get some friends, each of you write a 10-minute play on a theme, then hold a virtual reading of all of them. Gather writing prompts off the internet, from magazines, from books. Write them all down, fold each prompt down, put in a jar, then select one prompt a day and write. Or, go to one of the myriad virtual museums online, select a work of art and write a story, play or poem about it...or an essay. Or a critique, if you are more logically-minded. Revise it. Submit it somewhere.
10.) Take a Class
So many virtual class offerings going on right now, you can pretty much pick your poison! Freehold Theatre is offering some great online classes this spring; many colleges around the country have been and continue to offer some great courses in just about any subject you can think of - Coursera is a great place to start for things unrelated to acting. Learn a language; take a cooking seminar. There are so many possibilities out there to make quarantine easier.
11.) Costume Party
Play dress up: dress to the nines and host a virtual happy hour for friends. Or, pick a theme: costume yourself in your best post apocalyptic outfit, funky 60's garb, goth it up - you do you! Or, do outrageous animal makeup. Create a social media group and share your photos.
Day to day thoughts, rants and mental detritus.