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October 1, 2009 / lotcchicago

Moosehumps First Rehearsal


After getting off of work yesterday, I was feeling pretty nostalgic, thinking of our alma mater, Towson University. Now that all of LOTC is in Chicago, as are many of our other friends, it’s like home but it’s not. It’s new and exciting, and we’re all the same but grown-ups now. And as Lights Out dives headfirst into its second show, I cannot help but think of the distance we came to get here, to do the kind of theatre we do, and how we came to this aesthetic and personality.

I called one of our professors who is a scenic designer, and a personal mentor on my way to Moosehumps’ first rehearsal. And I was filling him in on all the craziness that the past

month has been, transitioning into our new company, and our second year. I asked what was happening at Towson, and he said they were doing a fun, edgy production of Romeo and Juliet, and that basically the set was vaguely a giant phallus on stage. He told me they built the set entirely in  then scene shop and then proceeded to place bets on whether or not it would clear the loading dock door to make it into the theatre. And it did, it cleared by a couple of inches, a success! And it’s things like that, that inspire LOTC. The idea that even in a seemingly safe environment there are still artists taking giant risks to create an exciting piece of theatre, that they’re trying new things and watching the drama literally unfold to see if these choices will succeed or fail.

What an inspiring and interesting introduction into Moosehumps: LOTC’s second show/event/party. (We like to blur those lines as much as we possibly can.) Moosehumps is a Choose-your-own Adventure Halloween play based on the campy scary stories of R.L. Stine’s similarly titled children’s novels. Alex and I talked months ago about what we could do to keep people interested in LOTC, as a 4 month break between shows runs the risk of losing a new company’s momentum. It started with the idea of doing a staged reading, and when we realized Halloween was smack dab in the middle of One Night Stand (which closed in August) and our upcoming Christmas sketch show, we started throwing around the idea of readings of things that aren’t plays: scary stories. We came to this weird mix, of what is now Moosehumps, written and directed by R. Alex Kliner.

And so, we booked a place, The Holiday Club, and cast the show, and got the script YESTERDAY, fresh off the presses, just in time for our first read (The first time even I got to read it). Sharing the same directoral role of this organization I had full faith that this would all come together in time, but of course going through the same feelings of “Will it clear the loading dock door?” Well, I am proud to say, we cleared, and this is one of the smartest, funniest, quirkiest scripts I’ve read in a while. There is so much room to try new things, to be big and goofy, and literally play.

I’m so excited to work with some new people and lots of old people on this show. Most of us have not worked together in years, and there is a really lovely magic that happens when we’re all piled into the same room together. It’s really fun, and it’s really different. We’ll be blogging through our spooky process, but mostly, we’re just really excited to do something weird and different, and hope you come to see it!

Oh! and this is who you should expect to see!

Jaclyn Keough, Bobby Libby, Mary O’Connor, Haily Wineland, Jessica Neilson, Bradley Burgess Donaleski, Christopher Moore,  and introducing… Joe Dickinson.

Written and directed by R. Alex Kliner

We’re also thrilled to bring back to LOTC, our newest addition to the tech team:

Stage Manager: Christina Dougherty

Check out our events page for more details!

(Photo, L to R: Jaclyn Keough, Mary Rose O’Connor, Christopher L. Moore)

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