Working in the Theatre
Working in the Theatre is a documentary series that delves into the most fascinating people, the process, and trends in the work of the American Theatre. This season, we explore a wide range of topics, travel the U.S. and France, and support our promise to showcase the diversity of the theatre industry. Episodes range from a site-specific production of Ragtime on Ellis Island, whose location reiterates its humanizing voice that echoes today’s political climate, to the story of a playwright working simultaneously on her show in two cities, which delves into life in the Mexico/U.S. borderlands. We’ve explored the process of choreography, makeup, and clowning and observed the censorship of a production not welcome in the playwright’s mother country through White Rabbit Red Rabbit. This season, we saw success by extending Sign Language Theatre from a piece that chronicles the Broadway revival of Spring Awakening to the history and current struggle that face deaf performers who wish to see true reflection of their lives and craft in a musical. With the help of the NEA, Gallaudet University, and the White House, we were able to dive deeper into this under explored topic of the theatre.
Trailer and Select Episodes
Working in the Theatre: Clowning
“If there is someone who is going to reach out, shake your hand and befriend you at the circus, it’s going to be the clown.” says Big Apple Circus clown Joel Jeske. “Clowns fall down so we don’t have to.”
An ancient form of theatrics rooted in physical comedy, clowning transcends language and cultural barriers by finding the absurd in the everyday. Follow clowns Brent McBeth, Joel Jeske and David Shiner through routines. Look inside Slava Polunin’s famed Snowshow and his Academy of Fools.
Working in the Theatre: Sign Language Theatre
Sign Language theatre has come to the forefront of commercial theatre through a production of Spring Awakening on Broadway. However, from the days of Charlie Chaplin films to the work at National Theatre of the Deaf and Gallaudet University, deaf actors and creative team members have produced some of the most incredible theatrical experiences. Follow members of the cast of Spring Awakening, Gallaudet University, and more as we explore the creative process, the history, and the joy that comes from sign language theatre.
Working in the Theatre: Choreography
What is choreography? It “is a joy of putting movement together, but it’s also a craft, and something that is intellectual too,” says Camille A. Brown (The Public, NYTW, City Center). “It’s less about a slick presentation of bodies on space, and more about the notion of true feeling, true connection, true interpersonal relationships, however that helps tell a very deep and moving story,” adds Josh Prince (Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, Broadway Dance Lab founder). Join Camille, Josh and Sergio Trujillo (On Your Feet!, Next to Normal, Jersey Boys) as they explore the craft of making dance come to life onstage 8 shows a week.
Working in the Theatre: Before the Show with Billy Porter and Patina Miller
Ever wonder what happens before the show? Working In The Theatre gets full access with Billy Porter (“Kinky Boots”) and Patina Miller (“Pippin”) as they prepare for the stage. Watch this rare behind the scenes glimpse as these Tony Award winners take us on a tour of their dressing room just hours before curtain.
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