Behind the bright lights and red velvet curtains of "professional theater" is an alternative that is challenging the norm. House Next Door Productions is a group of students from the Miami area looking to spread awareness of so-called "alternative theater" throughout the city. They're hoping that their production of Stephen Belber's Tape will do just that.
Maury Abascal, recent University of Miami graduate and producer of the piece, describes Tape as "a very powerful story." Some might recognize the play from it's 1999 screen adaptation starring Ethan Hawke and Uma Thurman.
It centers on Jon Saltzman, a filmmaker premiering his latest work at a
festival while also visiting his best friend from high school, Vince.
When the two reunite, they begin to discuss their complicated history
with Vince's high school sweetheart Amy Randall. Most important, however, is the
situation surrounding John's one-night stand with Amy on their
graduation night, which she deemed rape. The three come together and the
dramatic night unfolds.
Current FIU theater student Victoria
Collado is directing the piece in a way that brings the audience as
close as possible. "She wants to make sure the audience is very immersed
in the story so they are right in the middle of the space," says
Abascal. The entire show is set in a motel room and in this case, that
motel room is Collado's very own living room. The audience sits on
chairs, couches and pillows to feel as if they are with the characters
inside the room. The bathroom scene? Uses the actual bathroom too.
any college students strapped for cash, the production team used unique
means to find funding. With the fundraising web site Kickstarter,
the group pledged a goal of $600. In 12 days on the site, they
have received $630 -- mostly from family and friends.
show itself is free and will run June 3 and June 4 in Collado's home. Seating is limited to 30 people a night so it is
clear the overarching goal of the production is not necessarily
"What we wanted to get across with this is that there are
people in South Florida doing alternative theater," says Abascal. "We
eventually want to become a for-profit film and theater production
company so any money we make off of this will help start a company where
we put on Spanish-language plays and expand alternative theater and
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Those wanting to make donations can continue to do so until this Friday, May 27th via Kickstarter.