Saturday, June 20, 2009

What have we been doing?

As many already know, ONE has been produced in a variety of incarnations along the West Coast... with the last production taking place in Portland in 2005.

When that production closed, we knew it was time to add to the creative team in order for the piece to grow. While Wade focused his time on performing, we let the piece sit for some time... knowing that in order to take the next steps we needed to add a book writer.

In the meantime... Wade was off to LA. While in LA he had the opportunity to work with folks at Disney on a workshop production where he spent a lot of time watching the creative partnerships at work in the development of a new musical.Shortly thereafter he was cast in the touring company of the Broadway hit, "Jersey Boys." And it was off to New York for an intense 4-week rehearsal and then back to the West Coast for a San Francisco opening.

While in San Francisco, we began the search for a new book writer. Talking to many folks along the way, Wade kept returning to conversations with Kristin Steele. Kristin is a writer from Portland that had been involved in the 2005 production and had sat through some late-night script revisions.

After a Friday show of "Jersey Boys" Kristin and Wade sat with cocktails and discussed the possibility of working together on ONE. Kristin agreed to return to the source material and to think about the possibility of coming on as a book writer.

A few weeks later Kristin returned to San Francisco and the work began. For three intense days Wade and Kristin reviewed previous incarnations of scripts and music and agreed to start by returning to the novel "Siddhartha" by Herman Hesse and to sit down with a blank page.

For two years they dove into research, with periods of intense writing and re-writing. In the meantime, Wade was performing in "Cabaret" in Portland and in Rochester and eventually moved to New York City. Wade took on new projects, performing in "Jeffrey" and "Spitfire Grill" while Kristin continued work on two novels and the research for a third as well as two new plays.

The two continued their collaboration with the help of technology. Drafts and revisions were emailed. Weekly and sometimes daily work sessions were held over Skype, music was sent from iPod to iPod as mp3 files, and a few trips to New York and to Portland allowed the two to work in person.

And now after two-and-a-half years of collaboration with Kristin on book and Wade on music and lyrics there is a draft. A script that is about to move into workshop. Stay tuned as we take the next big step...

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