Saturday, July 24, 2010

RASH proceeds donated to Kenbe La Foundation

As we all know, there was a terrible earthquake in Haiti in January 2010 where around 220,000 people were killed and there are still 1.5 million people homeless. These numbers are hard to comprehend. On a personal note, what was so hard for me to comprehend was the loss of my friend Emmanuel Rejouis and his two young girls Kofie-Jade (5) and Zenzie (3). His wife Emily and their daughter Alyahna (2) survived. Emmanuel and I worked together with the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Rwanda. Emily has since created Kenbe La Foundation "to realise Emmanuel’s aspiration of providing inspirational educational opportunities for disadvantaged children of his birth-country Haiti, with an emphasis on sports, music, leadership and entrepreneurship".

RASH is largely based on the 3 years I lived and worked in Rwanda and so it seems fitting to donate all proceeds from the NY Fringe performances to the Foundation in memory of Emmanuel and his girls. Here is a beautiful obituary of Emmanuel that describes him so poignantly. As a writer, I confess I still find it hard to put words to paper on this one. And recently, Emily spoke out about the tragedy and the Foundation for the first time on New Zealand television. She is very inspirational and I think of her and Alyahna so often.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Preparing for RASH

Tick tock, tick tock. The New York Fringe Festival is fast approaching. As usual, I always underestimate how much work it is to get the play up and running again. The rare moments when I have the apartment to myself, it quickly gets rearranged into my performance space and I trip over lego and train tracks as I speed through rehearsing. I only have a few rehearsals with Jen Nails, the RASH director before she goes off on vacation so we're using that time wisely. Ashley, the play manager is amazing helping to organize all the details from marketing, press to tech. Huge thanks to Zach and Mari who have been helping us design the marketing materials and the blog. And we're thrilled that Taylor has joined our team as our stage manager/board operator. I'm still trying to find our lighting designer as well as a new costume. Fortunately I have some time off work this week to prepare. Last week we visited the HERE Arts Center with all the other productions performing in that space. It looks great and is an ideal intimate venue for RASH. Forthcoming we have venue prep (hours and hours of setting up the theatre for all the shows) and then our tech rehearsal. But there's still time, thank goodness. Although I can feel it ticking ...

Friday, July 16, 2010

RASH at the HERE Arts Center in August

We recently learned that RASH will be performed at the HERE Arts Center - Dorothy B. Williams in Soho. We visited the space this week and we're thrilled that it's our venue. It's a great intimate space that is perfect for a play like RASH. The New York Times has called HERE “one of the most unusual arts spaces in New York and possibly the model for the cutting-edge arts spaces of tomorrow.” It's also where the Vagina Monologues was developed by Eve Ensler. We also got confirmation of the dates of the performances. There will be six performances between 13th & 28th August. Check out the Fringe Festival Website for details. Tickets go on sale on July 23rd and we're expecting to sell out! And it's $15 if you buy a ticket in advance and $18 at the door. There will also be a short talkback with the audience after the Friday August 27th show if you want to hear more about the story behind RASH.