Saturday, February 11, 2012

Meet our Founder and Artistic Director: Nathaniel Shaw

What are your theatrical/artistic goals and aspirations?
To elevate the Active Theater to being one of the most respected organizations in NYC for the development of new plays as well as a place our audiences go to seek out meaningful, thought-provoking theater.

What has been your favorite "Active" experience?
I would say the rise of the curtain (so to speak) on our production of Lee Blessing's Two Rooms, directed by Glory Kadigan. It was our 1st production in the Workshop Theater, and though is was still very early in our history, it was a solid step up in production design than what had come before. I felt like we were "making our mark" for the 1st time.

What has been your best theatrical experience (outside of Active - a play you saw, a show you did, a person you met, etc.)?
This may sound incredibly cheesy, and the WRONG answer for the Artistic Director of a "thought-provoking" NYC Theater company, but playing Curly in Oklahoma at the Fulton Theater is probably the most wonderful on-stage experience I've had! For all of you snickering, there is a reason that is considered a masterpiece. At the core, there is a beautiful play there in which every character is fighting as hard as they can, scratching and clawing, for the sake of a meaningful love.

If you could turn any movie or book into a stage adaptation, what would it be and how do you picture it on stage?
I'm curious about The Sun Also Rises... Is there a movie or that??? I don't even know... I'm not sure it would work on stage given the difficulty of turning Hemingway's thrift into dialogue. I do wish the powers that be would get it together and get a musical version of The Princess Bride together!

It's a sunny day in May in NYC. You aren't working. What are you doing?
If it's this coming May, I will probably be in rehearsal for Body Language for Active, but if not, in the park with my wonderful wife, Lisa, and throwing the frisbee around with my brother.