Career Hurdles

A couple thoughts for fall… the seasons change it seems as though revelations drop like pretty colored leaves.

I’m channeling my archives again with the article below. This is from Baltimore Magazine. Not sure of the date (again!!!) but I think it’s around 1993. I was mentioned as one of “Baltimore’s most prominent playwrights,” and aside from talking about what yours truly has been up to, the magazine sought out Center Stage for a comment about why I hadn’t had a play produced at Center Stage (CS). I thought the comment they received perfectly reflects what I’d felt towards CS for years. To me, their quote had the same snarky, condescending and privileged air that I’d been fighting against for years.

Here’s the final quote if you can’t make it out: “I’m sure I speak for Stan when I say Alonzo is a talent. Stan just hasn’t felt strongly enough to devote one sixth of our season to him.”

I’m reminded of this when yet another CEO apologizes for his comments about the obstacles in finding qualified candidates for jobs at Wells Fargo. I’ve heard similar sentiments regurgitated from the mouths of Artistic Directors, and other theatre personnel. Somehow, there’s always an elusive standard that some “candidates” (or playwrights) don’t meet. Somehow, we’re either hard to find, or when they do find us — we come up short.

At this point in my career, I’d been produced off-Broadway, had a production in LA and written for network TV. Yet, I couldn’t get in the door at my local regional theatre.

But hey, I still LOVE this picture.

Playwriting — Forward and Back

Let’s see where the next zoom opportunity comes from. When I look back at my creative history, I’m amazed at some of the achievements that run across my radar. I was looking back at several amazing productions in Austin & Houston Texas that seemed to have generate lotsa buzz. More reviews, pics and Alonzo Activity are available in “Alonzo’s Archive”. It’s a true gift to be able review moments from my artistic life. If the coming years are even half as good, then I’m one lucky fella. One theme I’ve heard several times over, and this comes from Corona-V, that it’s time for American Theatre to re-evaluate the classics that have been passed over, most especially from African-American playwrights. Such as moi. Our work from the 1960’s on has never really re-surfaced. And speaking from experience, this is most definitely true from my early days in the 80’s. But, life goes on. I think folks are “warming” to black theatre, and/or white theatres performing more works by playwrights of color. (That be me)

And this poster from Houston is sooooooo jazzy it’s positively outta-sight.