We’re now three weeks into the school year here at Loyola but the first mainstage show of the season, Lost in Yonkers, is already in full swing. In fact, the cast, crew and production staff came back to campus a week before the Fall semester to get a head start on the rehearsal process. Speaking of production staff, I think a little introduction is in order:
Hi! My name’s Ryan Stanfield and I’m the production’s assistant director, dramaturg, and general production blogger. I’ll be bringing you weekly updates on the show’s progress leading up to our opening, as well as interesting information about the play itself.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with Yonkers, it’s a coming of age story centering around a pair of brothers spending a year in their grandmother’s Yonkers, New York City apartment during World War II. Written by Neil Simon, the play is at turns witty, poignant, and moving. It went on to win the Pulitzer Prize for drama in 1991 and the Broadway production ended up taking home the Tony Awards for Best Play, Best Actress, Best Featured Actor and Best Featured Actress. In 1993, Simon adapted his play into a feature film directed by Martha Coolidge.
Click the Read More button at the lower right hand corner to get the full details from Ryan!
In terms of our production, we have focused quite a bit on movement work with the actors in our space and creating a visceral sense of the intimate apartment setting in which these characters reside. The actors came into rehearsals mostly, if not fully memorized, which allowed us the freedom to stage the entire play within a week. Since then, we’ve been working slowly through the show, refining every aspect of the piece from the most dramatic moments to the playful banter.
We completed our move into the Newhart Family Theatre on Monday and it’s been incredibly exciting to work in our actual performance space and have the actors interact with the set as much as possible. As we keep working on the production, make sure to check back on the DFPA Arts Alive blog to follow our progress. This is one show not to miss!