A Sense of Gratitude in Real Time

By Elena Stephenson

When I reflect on my directorial contributions for In Real Time, I can’t help but feel a sense of gratitude. I feel gratitude for the experience, gratitude for the depth of learning, and gratitude for being able to work with a talented design team and ensemble. This experience was new for me because it was my first time serving as a director for a new play in development.

Table read at first rehearsal.

 

This past summer I was able to take Problems in Play Production with professor and playwright, Joe Salvatore. During that class, I was able to track the role of a director in the new play development process. That learning got to come full circle once I was able to put it to practice, by working alongside Joe as a director for one of his plays.

Window Cast (L to R): Kirstin Kammermeyer, Megan Ibarra, and Kyla Blocker

I immediately connected with “How do You Say ‘Window’ in Italian?”, catching the Three Sisters Chekhov reference in the title. The play appealed to me because of the strong sibling dynamic and the way that the sisters resembled Olga, Masha, and Irina. It was impossible not to connect to this play on a personal level because of my husband’s work as a nurse, specifically caring for those that suffer from dementia.

Window cast with director, Elena Stephenson (second from left)

What I loved most about all these plays is though they were very different, they all held a common thread of exploring human connection and capturing a moment “in real time.”

Photo © Chianan Yen

In Real Time: Educational Theatre Presents Six Original, Student-Directed Plays

In Real Time, a premiere performance of six new short plays written by NYU Steinhardt faculty member Joe Salvatore, will be presented by the NYU Steinhardt Program in Educational Theatre February 27-March 8, 2015. Each play is directed by students, working closely with Salvatore and 14 student actors.

educational-theater-presents-six-original-student-directed-plays-feb-27-march-8

The six short plays that make up In Real Time come from a series of eighteen plays that Salvatore wrote in 2012. Three of the plays were subsequently developed as part of a Writers Roundtable sponsored by the Program in Educational Theatre during the 2012-13 academic year. Salvatore also taught playwriting workshops to 180 middle school and high school students throughout New York City, whose feedback provided additional insights to develop the plays. Many of those students will attend the show in special school matinee performances on March 2 and March 6 at 10 a.m.

In Real Time features scenic design by Andy Hall, lighting design by Emily Stork, costume design by Márion Talán, and sound design and composition by Sam Crawford and Zeb Gould. The production stage manager is Talia Krispel, and Keith R. Huff serves as the production’s dramaturg. The directors are NYU Steinhardt students Katie Braun, Elena Stephenson Campbell, Yulissa Hidalgo, Haven Mitchell-Rose, Nick Robertson, and Shanae Sharon. The cast features NYU Steinhardt students Isaiah Bent, Kyla Blocker, Kordell Draper, David Ello, Nicole Gebler, Megan Ibarra, Kirsten Kammermeyer, Alexis Lounsbury, Adam Miller, Charlie Ponty, Sarah Smith, Devin Miranda Weise, Rachel Tuggle Whorton, and Peter Zerneck.

NYU’s production of In Real Time runs February 27-28, March 5-7 at 8pm, and March 1 and 8 at 3pm, at the Provincetown Playhouse (133 MacDougal Street). Tickets are $15 general admission and $5 for students and seniors. For tickets, contact NYU Box Office at tickets.nyu.edu or call the box office at 212.998.4941, or visit in person at 566 LaGuardia Place (at Washington Square South).