Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Friday, January 27, 2012

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Happy Birthday, Mr. Poe

Edgar Allan Poe would be 203 today. That's old. Cheers, sir, from our world to yours.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

They're Trying to Kill Me...oh the things we do for theatre...

I just wrote this in an email to our director for Kill Me...

"I can wrap her up in lots of dirty dirty bandages....maybe we think of her less like a flayed fresh body and more like a flayed decomposing body..."

Yup.  You heard me.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Happy Birthday Jason!

Fright-Rags is saying Happy Birthday to little Jason Voorhees with a sweet retro-looking limited edition G.I Jason T-shirt available for pre-order from today through Sunday at Midnight. It's totally available here, but only for a few short days! The perfect shirt to take off when losing your game of Strip Monopoly!

order soon before the offer expires!
P.S. THIS LINK WILL EXPIRE at 11:59pm (EST) Sunday, January 15!!!

Happy Friday the 13th!

Today marks the first of three Friday the 13ths we'll see this year. Whether you're friggatriskaidekaphobic or not, you're sure to enjoy a little Crispin Glover action on this fine day.

Speaking of Mr. Glover, he's in Chicago TODAY! He spoke this morning with WBEZ's Eight Forty-Eight and this weekend he screens his two films at the Music Box. Get yer Crispin on!!

Happy Friday the 13th, y'all!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Presenting...The Kill Me Poster....

I think that our intrepid graphic designer, Charlie Athanas, has turned out our most amazing and disturbing...visually arresting poster yet.  I love the way he has combined our central character (Sasha Gioppo playing Cam) and brought in the elements of isolation, nightmare, insanity, and the monstrous.  This will haunt you I swear...and hopefully haunt you so much you will come see our play...which will haunt you some more and then you will send us a big donation.

See how it works...I love it when a plan comes together.

Now on with the scary times. Tickets are on sale now!  Get em while they are hot and drippy with blood...get it?  Cause we're a horror theatre company?   Spooky boots yall.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Vampire Paper Dolls..Buy them for your wife...

I saw these in a sale ad.  I believe that they are awesome.  These would make a fun Valentine's Gift for your girlfriend or wife that loves vampires and paperdolls.  Especially if your wife's name is Aly.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Honor Awards...Vote for Wildclaw!

So Katy Walsh has put up a best of 2011 survey and Wildclaw is very pleased to be on it! So show us the love by voting for your favorite horror theatre company!  Also so the love for our friends at Lifeline Theatre and it's productions of Monte Cristo and Watership Down which was positively filthy with clawvians.


Thursday, January 5, 2012

I Saw a Man Pursuing the Horizon...

Months ago the clan of deviants known as Wildclaw Theatre Company assembled in an apartment on the northside. We read a play. A play about 3 women, one of whom was unable to die. Or something...

After lots of discussion, brain jammery & revisions we're now in rehearsals for that play.

Kill Me is already one of the most enigmatic processes I've ever been a part of. The options are seemingly limitless and the room is full of beautiful brains challenging the playwright (who's sitting right over there...). Where, when, and how these people are is as fluid as the ink in your pen, and as shifty as that guy standing on the corner of Broadway and Sheridan at 2am. The imagery concocted by the dialogue is following me home at night, and has already worked its way into my dreams. It nags me and posits rusty whispers in my ears.

So it's no surprise that standard prose is proving unsatisfying.

Stephen Crane has been one of my favorite poets ever since I discovered this poem. He's dark, his words growl and 9 times out of 10 I feel uneasy after a stanza or two. Lately, I find myself muttering this particular poem under my breath and thinking, "That poor soul." However, everyone's journey for their universal truth is their own. So, who am I to judge? To question? No one. I'm just as lost & found as my neighbor.

No better.

So, if your neighbor, or your lover says "I can't die." And you deny them their pursuit, they'll just keep running towards the horizon.

Trust me.
I know.

- Michaela Petro, WildClaw company member and KILL ME cast member

"I saw a man pursuing the horizon"
by Stephen Crane

I saw a man pursuing the horizon;
Round and round they sped.
I was disturbed at this;
I accosted the man.
"It is futile," I said,
"You can never --"

"You lie," he cried,
And ran on.

Horror Society Presents: Trash Movie Night

Our good friends at the Horror Society are serving up a real treat for you this friday night.  I do love me some Critters...and Rawhead Rex is some nice old school weird Clive Barker.  Enjoy....

Rawhead Rex (1986)
Ireland will never be the same after Rawhead Rex, a particularly nasty demon, is released from his underground prison by an unwitting farmer. The film follows Rex's cross country rampage, while a man struggles to stop it

Critters (1986)
A massive ball of furry creatures from another world eat their way through a small mid-western town followed by intergalactic bounty hunters opposed only by militant townspeople.

As always, Trash Movie Night will be upstairs at Lucky Number Grill. Doors Open at 9pm, 1st movie will be CRITTERS at 9:30pm and RAWHEAD REX at Midnight!

Drink Specials will be on hand
Free Popcorn!
Vendor Table (more info coming soon)



Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Crispin Glover comes to the Musicbox... again!

January 13th and 14th at the beloved Musicbox Theatre will feature Crispin Hellion Glover performing "live dramatic narration of his books."  Illustrations will be projected behind the reading, and it will be followed by screenings of his various films.

Let me say at this point that I love me some Crispin Glover.  At least... in theory.  Let me explain.  The first time I ventured to the Musicbox to see him live and in person it was to witness him narrating Guy Maddin's 2006 silent film Brand Upon the Brain!  A film which featured, among other things, an 11-piece orchestra, a castratti, and live sound effect.  Sounds great?  Yes, it does!  And yet, why is it that all I can really remember of the event is feeling the hairs on the back of my neck stand up and a rising sense of needing to run away as Crispin Glover screamed "ROMANIA!!" at the top of his lungs (did you know his voice goes to 11?  True.) about twenty thousand times, seemingly right at me.

Sure, maybe this was because, during the show, I developed a 103 degree fever and when I discovered it was raining cats and dogs outside and I had on only a t-shirt, skirt and flip flops, I also learned just how difficult walking, nay EXISTING, can be under these kind of challenges.  It was, literally, one of the worst afternoones of my life.  I have felt worst, but at that moment I felt pretty darn bad in every way.

I can't help but think this was somehow just all the effect of meeting Crispin Glover in person.  His smile is boyishly charming and yet has the sense of a thin mask of sanity overlaid upon a roiling black hole of chaos and booming, evil laughter.

So, sure, most of us have seen his interview with David Letterman in 1987, right?  You know, the one where he's the craziest person in the world and tries to kick David in the head?

Well, did you ever see his follow-up interview where he tries to claim that wasn't even him??

I will add that I think both of these interview "personalities" are some performance art stunt he was pulling for the day.  Each word, each awkward gesture, planned.  He's just that guy.  And you will get that sense, just like I did, if you see him in person.

So, go to this event at the Musicbox.  Or run away from it before you develop sweaty delirium.  Either way, you will never forget it.  I never did.  I won't even tell you what the movies to be screened are, you can find that out for yourself.  I'm just saying... naked woman in a monkey mask jerking off a guy with severe cerebral palsy.  Decide now if that's your bag or not.  You won't want to find out you were wrong later.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Our new look...

Trying some stuff out.  pass us no nevermind.

They're Trying To Kill Me - Poster Design 1

This will be a first. Charlie Athanas here. I design the posters for WildClaw's play productions. Normally, if I think there is enough interesting going on in the design process, I put that process up on our website after we have performed the run of the show (The Great God Pan poster and The Dreams in the Witch House poster).

For KILL ME we have decided to lay bare more of our process before you see the show, so possible SPOILERS ahead.

For KILL ME, we have changed the poster design process by including more people in on the decision process. I typically work with just the director to get their vision of the production they are mounting. Sometimes, not even that, because some directors want nothing to do with the marketing of their show. In this instance I am working with the director (Jeff Christian),  WildClaw's Artistic Director (Aly Renee Amidei), and the play's author (Scott T. Barsotti). As you will see later, this often leads to hilarious decision processes, but it also brings in a lot of collaborative viewpoints and some clarity on what it is we are trying to sell you.

When I first started looking at ideas, I was way off the mark. The idea I wanted to convey was a central character whose suicidal impulses were splattering over into the other character's lives. We also have three very attractive women in our leads (left to right: Casey Cunningham, Sasha Gioppo, and Michaela Petro) and it would be nice to have them on the poster. Plus, the play's title, KILL ME, is powerful in and of itself.

In the fourth image, I was looking to convey the duality of the lead character's dilemma in the script.

But, after meeting with the Jeff, KILL ME's director, I realized I was missing a lot of the subtleties of the production Jeff was putting together. My favorite part of the process is sitting with the director to explore with them what they are trying to communicate with their version of the script. I think it is also helpful to the directors to have to actually verbalize to someone else the absolute essence of the message. It often raises questions that haven't been looked at before in the design and rehearsal process.


After my talk with Jeff, I went away and looked over the notes from our discussion and came away with three sketches to present to Jeff, Aly, and Scott. Here is where we come to the part of the collaborative process that you can either laugh or cry about. They liked all the sketches.

Aly liked #1 the best.

Scott liked #2 the best.

Jeff liked #3 the best.

My preference was #4.

Ah ...

So, now I am at the process of taking in their feedback to produce the final image. It will incorporate something from all of the sketches I suspect and then will be simplified to create a strong. powerful image that can be read from across the street. That's the goal any way.

More to come this week.

P.S. I always find it amusing to here from theatre companies that tell me they are surprised that WildClaw and the director have any input  on the poster image. Typically, they get an artist and take whatever they get back and hope it's the right image for their play.

Bob Howard, Plumber of the Unknown Holiday Special...last day!

Check out the holiday special "Slay Bells" of the Bob Howard comic.  Today is the last day to catch it online for free...

Monday, January 2, 2012

They're Trying to Kill Me-First Rehearsal Tonight

Artistic Director Log....star date January 2nd, 2012.  We have our first official rehearsal for our next play tonight: Kill Me by company member Scott T. Barsotti.  Exciting times.  I am also doing the costumes and I can tell you that the production/design meetings have been extremely exciting.  This is a different show for us....more lyrical...less tangible...more monsters...and blood of course.  I am most excited by the emphasis and movement and creating a live sound scape for the show.  Big things happening.  As for my jobs, as the costume designer  I need to get my fanny in gear to get several of the costumes done early to help the actors with the movement.  A monster needs to know what sort of monster it is before it can move like a monster evidently.  As Artistic Director...well I am still not entirely sure what I am doing...just trying to get the tanks filled and the crab to cannery basically.

The whole team will be keeping the blog filled with behind the curtain peaks of the show as we bring it to the Atheneaum Studio Theatre for its opening on February 13th, 2012.  Mark your calendars...preferably with a bloody fingerprint.