only take seven minutes to drain.” This is a joke…a knock on wood. This pool won’t break. It’s built like a battleship. But still…there is a risk. She and Savas take it in stride. “If I wanted safety and security, I wouldn’t have told my parents I wanted to be an actor,” Savas confesses. Thus begins the 38th season at The Warehouse Theatre—an epic Roman poem, lyrically acted in a swimming pool. Tickets are selling quickly. There is talk of extending the run. Next up: Bernard Pomerance’s The Elephant Man. Savas and Robert promise that there will be no prosthetic devices used to create John Merrick’s ghastly form in the production. It will be intensity, intimacy that will force the audience to look at what we’d prefer not to. “And the pool, of course,” Robert says with a grin. “After all that went into building that pool, we’re playing the entire season in it.” The Warehouse Theatre is working. Small, simple steps…smart programming choices marked by artistic ambition…and a friendly, winning way. Savas voice on the other end of the theatre’s telephone answering machine says it all: “We spell theatre the pretentious way, but I assure you, we are not.”
level, austerity in arts organizations is no longer just “good practice.” It’s do or die. “I want this theatre to do more, be better…I’ve got a list. Things I want to see us do here in the next five, ten, fifteen years,” his voice rises in volume. People nearby notice. “But we have to do the little things right now. And little by little I know we’ll get there.” The theatre’s current production of Ovid’s “Metamorphoses” is a perfect example of getting the little things right. “We look for an intriguing hook when we select plays for our season,” Savas explains, “The cool thing is, we’ve found that people are intrigued by artists who strive for something bold.” Bold is something of an understatement in the case of “The Metamorphoses.” Ever seen a play performed in a three-foot swimming pool? Shannon Robert, the play’s director and designer, describes Ovid’s epic Roman poem as flood-like. “Essentially, Ovid’s poem chronicles the ancient Greek myths. But it’s gorgeous, lyrical…stories flow into one another like a symphony.” Indeed, Robert’s pool gives the production a tactile sense that is rare in the theatre: it’s wet. The stage itself is alive… shimmering, ebbing and flowing. “It took almost seven hours to fill,” she says, “Of course, it’ll
Published on Sep 10, 2011
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