Monday, October 26, 2015
Spotlight On...Chad Lindsey
Hometown: Saginaw, Michigan
Education: BA in Music from Valparaiso University
Favorite Credits: Midsummer at Classic Stage Company, Chekhov Lizardbrain with Pig Iron Theater
Why theater?: Lookit. It's gonna sound hokey, but here it is: Theater is the magic box wherein language, movement, ritual, and sweat can change a person forever. It is a communal creative act of love, it's therapy writ large, and a sports arena for the storyteller.
Tell us about God is a Verb: How will I be remembered? What is genius? What if great ideas hit - and the world isn't ready for them? How many times have the gears of progress, time, and place almost meshed, but unmatched, slipped and spun, and in the process great ideas slid into the void? These are the questions that we asked ourselves as we played with biographical material from the life of design scientist R. Buckminster Fuller. The play we have created is a kaleidoscope of fiction and fact. Myth lives next to truth, and neither like the arrangement very much, but the tension is fun to watch!
What made you want to direct God is a Verb?: Bucky was my "snag" (our company's way of saying "I have an idea that's hooked me - listen up"). I wanted to dig into the life of Buckminster Fuller. My dad liked geodesic domes - drove us past them in the car as kids, pointing and chuckling. And thanks to my whiz boyfriend, I've been reading more and more about mid-century design, the failures of Modernism in urban planning, and the mind of the prototypical 20th Century Planner, so I instigated a little research pod - Hook & Eye does it's work in pods. Writer Gavin Broady was looped in early in the process, and at a family dinner one night, realized his girlfriend's dad knew Bucky in the 60s. Blessed with some primary source material, and moving quickly toward a consensus, we decided to center the play around Bucky's work in the late 60s, in particular, the World Game - an idea Bucky had - to play the world and its resources as a game in order to make it all work for 100% of the population with no one at a disadvantage.I couldn't let this opportunity go. As the originator of the "snag" and the champion of the first pod, I had the responsibility of finding a director or becoming it. I chose to lead.
What kind of theater speaks to you? What or who inspires you as an artist?: Anything physical, musical and smart. I enjoy watching the actors do the work of making the world of the play. I'm inspired by companies like Kneehigh and Pig Iron (with whom I worked several years ago) and dance theater like Pina Bauch's Tanztheater Wuppertal. Inspiration can come from a telecom commercial, for all I care. Or a pear, or an ashtray. It's the work you do after the inspiration that counts.
If you could work with anyone you’ve yet to work with, who would it be?: I've just finished Glen Berger's astonishing book "Song of Spider-Man", and I don't care what anybody says, I'd love to lock horns with - and doubtless learn from - Julie Taymor.
What show have you recommended to your friends?: If you're on a budget, and pressed for time, I recommend the internet. "Veep" and "Rosemary and Thyme". It's all there. HOWEVER, if you have the time and money, see as much theater as you can. Even the bad stuff teaches you critical thinking and establishes your notion of taste -something so important to have.
Who would play you in a movie about yourself and what would it be called?: Chris Pratt might be able to handle it. And call it "You Should Try Stand-up".
If you could go back in time and see any play or musical you missed, what would it be?: I saw Starlight Express in London in 1980-something, so I'm good... no I'd like to see Broadway's precursors - the fatal last show for Stanford White - Mam’zelle Champagne in the old Madison Square Garden in 1906.
What’s your biggest guilty pleasure?: Disposable molded plastic dental floss holder thingys.
If you weren’t working in theater, you would be _____?: An Architect.
What’s up next?: Hook & Eye co-Artistic Director Carrie Heitman is championing a "snag" about the earth's magnetic field, cartography, national parks, and destiny, I think. I have a hard time thinking that far ahead.