Apr 18, 2012

Revisiting CHOP

CHOP promo trailer from FT Bonnigan on Vimeo.

This coming weekend I'm taking my one-man show CHOP to San Antonio for a two-night engagement at the Overtime Theatre. I haven't performed the piece since last summer and it is the fifth time I've come back to the piece after not performing it for a substantial amount of time. Here are some of my thoughts on returning to CHOP I've had over the past week as I reacquaint myself with the work...

1. I remember the story. What I mean by this is I could tell you the whole story of the piece at a drop of a hat. I am familiar enough with the overall arc and main points of the narrative that I could tell it like I was telling a good bar story.

2. I don't remember the word-for-word details as well as I had hoped. Reading back over it, I realize there is a tremendous amount of finesse (for lack of a better term) to work back into the piece. The artfulness of the telling has to be worked on. that's what most of the last few days have been dedicated to.

3. Remembering where I stored the sets/props has been difficult. Ruth and I moved since I last performed CHOP, so nothing is exactly where I thought I'd left it. A full day was spent just locating and collecting material items between my house, my folk's garage and a storage unit. When I have to gather and worry over tech stuff, I understand why some solo performers just work on a blank stage.

4. I've discovered more layers to my own piece. I, of course, approach it differently now than I did even last August. I'm different so the play is different. This is the most rewarding aspect to remounting a very personal theatre piece. It deepens. There is always more to mine. And hopefully, each time I perform the piece, it will be richer and richer, both for me as well as the audience.

If you are in San Antonio this weekend, April 20 & 21, here's the info. Come out and see the show!


  1. Saw your show tonight in San Antonio, I really loved it. I did my first solo performance recently and am currently mulling another piece in my head. Great to see your work, and to find this blog. Thank you.

  2. Glad you enjoyed the show. All the best with your own pieces. As a resource you may wanna browse around a website I moderate: www.TheSoloPerformer.com