2016/2017 culminated in April with the world-premiere production of my play Forgotten Kingdoms. Inspired in part by the stories and experiences of my missionary Grandparents, it tells the story of a misguided minister who tries to convert a young local and in the process watches his own life fall apart around him.
The script began in grad school at Goddard College in 2011 and continued its development with readings and workshops at NNPN, Inkwell Theatre and The Kennedy Center’s Page to Stage Festival in DC, MT Theatre Works in New York, Wordsmyth Theater in Houston and Jakarta Players in Indonesia. Directed by Cara Gabriel and designed by my wife Debra Kim Sivigny, the production featured Jakarta actor Rizal Iwan (whose appearance was sponsored by the Indonesian Embassy) as well local actors Sun King Davis, Vishwas, Natalie Cutcher and Jeremy Gee.
Bold…poignant…rich in telling detail… You won’t soon forget Forgotten Kingdoms.“
– Washington Post (CLICK HERE for full review)
“Part cross-cultural collision, part family melodrama, part theological thriller, part audacious myth-making, Rorschach Theatre’s Forgotten Kingdoms contains such rich content it’s like riding a rip tide.”
–DC Metro Theater Arts (CLICK HERE for review)
More reviews and photos on Rorschach Theatre’s site: http://www.rorschachtheatre.com/forgotten-kingdoms/
In June Shirley Serotsky will direct a staged reading of Rashōmon’s Gate at Spooky Action Theatre. The script is my retelling of the classic Akutagawa short stories “Rashōmon” and “Yabu no Naka” and is a new draft of the semi-devised production that I created for American University in 2015. In August I’ll be returning to Theatre Lab to direct a new adaptation of Shakespeare’s Macbeth with the talented kids of the Summer Acting Institute for Teens as well as directing Tennessee Williams’ Suddenly Last Summer as a final project for the graduating class at the National Conservatory for the Dramatic Arts. Also in August I’ll be returning to write a pair of plays at the One-Minute Play Festival, performing August 8 and 9.
In the fall I will be directing a show written by Debra Kim Sivigny. Hello my Name Is… with The Welders – performing October 18-November 19. A seven-room living installation, the project invites each intimate audience to investigate their ideas of home, self, and nationality. Partly autobiographical, it’s inspired by Deb’s experience as a Korean adoptee and her journey in 2015 to South Korea–her former, then-unfamiliar homeland.
At Rorschach Theatre, where I serve as co-Artistic Director with Jenny McConnell Frederick, the fall marks the exciting return of Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere. Redesigned and re-imagined from the hit 2013 production, Neil Gaiman’s trip into the world below London returns September 2-October 1.
This Past Season: 2016/2017
2016-2017 began In August 2016 when I helped to create an immersive piece called Thesmophoria as a fundraiser for Rorschach Theatre. The piece combined multiple stories with wordless dance pieces that I directed and wrote with other collaborators. Also in August, I directed Columbinus (a fictionalized and highly theatrical retelling of the columbine tragedy) with a group of wildly talented high school students taking part in Theater Lab’s Summer Institute for Teens.
In September and October I directed Naomi Iizuka’s Anon(ymous) at Georgetown University. The play is an adaptation of the Odyssey told through the eyes of a young refugee. Aso in the fall Rorschach Theatre presented the world premiere of Erin Bregman’s A Bid to Save the World. Directed by Lee Liebeskind, the productionwas a testament to the beautiful, impossible piece of theatre that Erin wrote.
In addition to working on the spring production of Forgotten Kingdoms I also directed an educational production The Crucible at The Theatre Lab school of Dramatic Arts and helped to create American University’s Senior Capstone, Scarred for Life – a project that was written, directed and devised by the graduating Seniors in the Department of Performing Arts.