Official Website of Michael Fletcher Tester

Everything listed under: peter pan

  • Random Acts of Flying

    Confess!: at one time or another you have found yourself watching a live performance, when suddenly and without warning, you are struck by a fleeting case of T.D.D. (Theatrical Distraction Disorder). What is a theatre patron to do?  One wouldn’t dare reach for a Device; Everything is off, swallowed or on mute. Everything that is, except for that imaginary diva in your head who whispers: “what if that that character on stage suddenly flew?  Not metaphorically. But like, you know: up and winged across the stage? Maybe even over the audience. And for no discernible reason other than the magic of theatre and/or lyrics compelled them to do so."

    Welcome to Random Acts of Flying (AKA: RAF). Here are two such moments of RAF I want to see in the postmodern, Taymor meets Dali theatre of my dreams:

    1) Company: when Joanne commands everyone to toast on the final “Rise!” of “Ladies Who Lunch,” Elaine Stritch levitates from her bar stool, and rises over the audience sprinkling olives like pixie dust.

    2) Doubt: at the end of the play Sister Aloysius takes off like the Flying Nun and … scene. 

    What character would you like to see RAF, and at what point in their show? 

    The author backstage in the national tour of Peter Pan, A place where dreams are born, and flying is in the contract.

    RANDOM LINK: One of the most charmingly disturbing websites I have accidentally come across while searching for Peter Pan costumes: be warned! http://pixyland.org/peterpan/

    “You have the right to remain creative”… Michael Fletcher Tester

  • Disorderly Conduct - Peter Pan

    A typical production of Peter Pan juggles such stage variables as child actors, production numbers, dancers in animal costumes, sword play, elaborate set changes, lasers, pyrotechnics, three types of smoke (dry ice, hazers and chemical fog) and, ideally flying (I qualified the later because some older road houses cannot support the ZFX or FOY rigging but I am getting ahead of myself). When all this stage craft works harmoniously the show delivers on its promise to be a place where dreams are born. When they do not, such is the magic of live theater that the audience is usually in on the joke and, so long as it is only pride that gets hurt, everyone exits the main or stage door smiling.

    To wit: my experience as an actor in a tour of Peter Pan included such unscripted moments as Captain Hook’s hook unscrewing and flying across the stage- forcing his fellow pirates to call him “Captain Stump;”,  the child actor playing Michael falling asleep onstage forcing Wendy to scream in his ear: “Wake up!!!!” - prompting the kid to jump to his feet like he just saw Elaine Stritch under his bed, before being latched to his flying rig, and yanked into the air-where he woke up somewhere over the mezzanine.  And of course the eluded to former vaudeville road house with such limited fly space only Peter Pan could sing, “I’m Flying,” while the little Darlings pondered how they were going to hitch a ride to Neverland.

    Do you have a similar story? Share it below!

    “You have the right to remain creative”… Michael Fletcher Tester

  • The Lineup

    There was a recent press release announcing the licensing of 30 minute version of ANNIE.  This inspired the Drama Police to offer tips on how to make your show shorter:

    • Direct Jean Valjean to pay for the bread
    • Your Twelve Angry Men agree on the first ballot
    • Change the Guys line to “The Biltmore Garage is in!”
    • Have the apothecary prescribe Hamlet some Prozac
    • Make Danny & Sandy gay (like in the movie)
    • Direct the Darling family to lock their windows at night
    • Cut all the curse words from your Mamet play

    Have any tips to make a show shorter? Leave a comment below.

    “You have the right to remain creative”… Michael Fletcher Tester

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