Theater: The Reviews Are In! Prendergast's "SPHINCTER" Gets Two Thumbs Up!
Well--sort of. It was good, because for the most part I got the laughs where I wrote them. But I didn't realize (until I saw it performed) what a long-winded bastard I am. I am going back and cutting at least fifteen minutes out of it. Then it will truly be a masterpiece.
An obscure masterpiece. Some audience members seemed confused by certain scenes--when the hero's lawyer was performing an obscene act on himself, when the heroine kept calling her psychiatrist a Jew, when the sea raccoons burst up out of the water into the Vietnamese gunboat and tried to rip the hero's throat open, when the presidential anus announced it was attacking Uruguay.
A certain amount of confusion is inevitable, I suppose. It didn't help matters when the reading was interrupted halfway through the third act by fifteen to twenty minutes of nearly incessant stomping coming from the rehearsal space above. I don't know what they were rehearsing upstairs, but from where I sat it sounded like they were a troupe of one-legged Native American rain dancers in mountain boots who really resented the fact that a play reading was going on downstairs. It was very irritating, and it went on for quite awhile. I didn't want to be the "prima donna" so I didn't object at the time.
Since these readings take months to set up, it's not really fair to the writer or to the actors (or to the audience) to allow that to go on above a rehearsal space. But that was the one disappointment in an otherwise very useful and helpful evening. So I will send thanks to the Playwright's Center.
And a special thank you to everyone who came all the way in to attend and perform. All the best to you guys, you helped me immeasurably, I hope I can return the favor some time.