Dec 28, 2015

Looking Back at 2015

Usually, by the end of the year I just don’t remember a lot of what happened.  Too much work, adventure and travel makes time go really fast.  The blog posts I put on this site serve as little reminders that things happened, theatre was created, bourbon consumed, adventures were had. For the last few years I've been using this site as a portfolio of sorts and doing a little summation of the year that ends (here's 2012,2013 and 2014). So, here’s some stuff I did in 2015...
CHOP at the Margo Jones Theatre
In late January into early February I mounted my solo show CHOP for a proper two-weekend run. It was well-recieved, though attendance wa spotty. I was glad to give it a solid two-week run here in Dallas. It felt like a neat bookend to premiering it in 2010 in the area and then taking it all over the country the last five years.

I also launched a new podcast project with my friend Jeff Hernandez. It is called The Rumbleshanks Tapes. It is the "lost" archives of conversations between a cyborg mad genius named Captain Ulysseus Rumbleshanks and his dogged interrogator Agent Hanson. Hernandez and I made 4 episodes over the year and hope to make a few more.

In February I redesigned TheSoloPerformer.com website I moderate. I also "re-launched" my YouTube channel. There's anow a focus on theatre topics (history, thoughts, theories, etc.) and little behind-the-scenes mini-documentaries about my traveling solo shows.

I also launched a new section of this website called The Book Shelf where I have begun to compile a list of the all-time most beneficial books that have helped me as a person and as an artist. I am slowly rolling out "book reports" on some of the most influential.


CYRANO A-GO-GO at the Out of the Loop
In March I remounted a reworked version of CYRANO A-GO-GO at the Addison Water Tower Theatre's Out of the Loop Fringe Festival. It was a bit rough, but I did win a Best of Fest Award for it (this was the second year in a row I won that award!).

At the end of March I also performed a five-show engagement at Tarrant County College, where I am an adjunct. This was more of a for-the-students run, though the public was welcomed. I had a crew of student stage hands helping. I love performing the show and I might do it again in the future, but I am moving on to other projects. I am putting CHOP on the back-burner for a while.


In June the 2nd Annual Dallas Solo Fest played at the Margo Jones Theatre in Fair Park. It was pretty successful. I produced it and Ruth helped out with hospitality and ran the box office. It was more difficult to get press coverage than the first year. I guess the first year had novelty. The second year is a bit of “Oh, that again…” Dallas likes new stuff.





In July we started an intense period of travel. First to Orlando, where my folks got the family together in the Walt Disney World resort. We were there to celebrate my niece, Kylie’s birthday. She turned ten. It was really fun and we spent several days visiting theme parks, eating really well, and riding rides.



Right after we returned from Florida, Ruth and I car tripped out to California, where we hung out with her sister Christine and her family. They live about an hour east of Los Angeles in a place called Yucaipa. Besides seeing a lot of Ruth’s extended family, we spent a few days in Anaheim for a big YouTube conference called VidCon (creating YouTube videos is one of my growing interests). My friend Jeff Hernandez drove out to attend as well. It was fun and informative, though we noticed that outside of the organizers we were some of the oldest people there. And of course, we went to Disneyland while we were out there. Two Disneys in one summer…


Back to Texas for a few days, then I headed off to Seattle. My friend Grant and I were meeting there before driving up to Naniamo (north of Victoria) in Canada. I was in a fringe theatre festival up there, performing my solo show CYRANO A-GO-GO. Ruth stayed home and started setting up the new rental house.



From Canada, Grant and I drove back to Seattle, then on to Fresno, California. In Fresno, I performed at a sort of mini-fringe event, again with my CYRANO show. It was an epic three week-long adventure that is too jam-packed to go into here in this letter, but I did make some new friends/colleagues, performed to several standing ovations and had a blast. I missed Ruth. The adventures are not quite the same without her.

At the beginning of November, Ruth and I set off for Scranton, Pennsylvania. I performed my solo show ROBERT’S ETERNAL GOLDFISH at the first ever Scranton Fringe. It was a good trip, though the festival was brand new and had a ways to go with audience attendance. On the plus side, the festival organizers put Ruth and I up in a neat hotel in the center of Scranton. It was a hotel that had been converted from an old railway station.


In late October my play DINOSAUR AND ROBOT STOP A TRAIN saw the light of day again. It was a co-production between my group Audacity and a tiny theatre outfit up in Denton, Texas called Sundown. DINOSAUR AND ROBOT STOP ATRAIN played in Denton and in Dallas over four weekends. The actors worked really hard. Unfortunately, there was spotty attendance in both cities.

In December, I started rehearsals on NIGHT OF THE TARNATUBEARS a horror-comedy I co-wrote with my friend Hernandez. I’m directing and producing with my own outfit, Audacity, it should be awesome. Opens in late January.

DINOSAUR AND ROBOT STOP A TRAIN
I had one or two other small triumphs at the end of the year. I published my first ebook on Amazon Kindle… my one-act solo show I BROUGHT HOME A CHUPACABRA. The feedback on it was overwhelmingly positive. I will try to publish more works in 2016. My little playlet THE YETI IN THE AIRPORT LOUNGE was included in a collection of holiday themed one-acts put on by Nouveau 47 Theatre in December. It got good reviews.




The above does not include the comics I drew over on DribbleFunkComics.com, handful of illustrations I created, the interviews and articles I did over on TheSoloPerformer.com, miscellaneous workshops I taught and the half dozen or so podcasts I co-hosted for Sensational Adventure Club's Bike Soccer Jamboree.

All in all, 2015 was a productive and far-flung year.

Dec 20, 2015

Nice write up about THE YETI IN THE AIRPORT LOUNGE

My little playlet THE YETI IN THE AIRPORT LOUNGE got a nice little write-up in the Dallas Observer.

IN 10 SHORT NEW PLAYS, N47 THEATRE EXPLORES THE HIGHS AND LOWS OF HOLIDAYS
By Elaine Liner | December 18, 2015 | Dallas Observer

DeWayne Blundell, in snowbeast drag, listens to Andra Laine Hunter’s monologue in
Brad McEntire’s 
The Yeti in the Airport Lounge.
Of the 90 scripts submitted to N47 (formerly Nouveau 47 Theatre) for this festival, 10 were picked to put on the stage, each about 10 minutes long. A couple of the scripts are real standouts, though you’ll sit through some Debbie Downers (about the dead moms) to get to the good stuff. And they are Scrooge-budget productions. A few chairs and a folding table or two make up the scenery. Six actors zip in and out of each of the shows. Alex Bigus, Jim Kuenzer, Rebecca McDonald and Nic McMinn share directing credit. Erin Singleton produced all of it.

If there’s a running theme in this year’s entries in N47 Theatre’s A Very Nouveau Holiday mini-fest at the Margo Jones Theatre in Fair Park, it’s that Christmas just isn’t the same after Mom dies. Or if you’re stuck at the airport with the Abominable Snowman. Or if a comic book super hero can’t bring you out of your coma. You know, the usual fa-la-la-derol.
. . .

Brad McEntire’s The Yeti in the Airport Lounge, directed by Kuenzer, finds a chatty woman (Hunter) stuck in a waiting lounge next to a patient Arizona-bound Himalayan snowbeast (DeWayne Blundell in head-to-paw white fur). Yeti listens as his fellow traveler unloads her woes in a rapid-fire monologue about a wayward boyfriend, her fear of going back home alone for the holidays and her personal issues about control and abandonment. Yeti never says a word, just offers the lady a juice box and a big fuzzy shoulder to cry on. A little dance party erupts. A friendship is made. And McEntire’s playlet reminds us that anonymous airport oversharing sometimes helps pass the time between flights.


Full review... HERE


Dec 9, 2015

Author interview on AwesomeGang.com

I was recently interviewed on the website AwesomeGang.com. The tagline for the site is "Where Awesome Readers Meet Awesome Writers." The interview coincided with the recent release of the Kindle ebook version of my play I BROUGHT HOME A CHUPACABRA.


Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.

I BROUGHT HOME A CHUPACABRA is my first Kindle book. Years ago I published a collection of plays simply called TWO PLAYS (AND SOME SKETCHES) BY BRAD McENTIRE, but it is now out of print. I also did a short ebook on theatrical solo performance a while back called 7 CONSIDERATIONS FOR THE SOLO PERFORMER. 

I have a paperback collection of comics available called I HATE HAWK SEASON as well. It can be found on Amazon. It is a collection of comics that originally appeared on the webcomic site Dribble Funk Comics. The series is named after the main character Donnie Rocket Toaster-Face.

What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?

I BROUGHT HOME A CHUPACABRA was inspired by my wife. She is a supreme dog person. I mean, she wanders straight up to dogs when she first meets them and gets all up in their faces. I am always worry that she will someday get bitten in the face.

She’s also the kind of person who when she hears about, say, traffic accidents that involve people and their pets, she cries because animals were hurt (nevermind those pesky humans who also might have suffered…)

I thought, what if she was this obsessive about something that was not a dog. What if it was a mythical beast of some kind? Thus was the seed of I BROUGHT HOME A CHUPACABRA planted.

Do you have any unusual writing habits?

The unsual thing is, I don’t have really any steady writing habits at all. I get an idea, then let it percolate in my brain for a while. Then I lay it down on paper in a mad dash. Then rewrite as needed.

I wish I coul be one of those people who sits down every day and turns out so many hundreds of words like clockwork.

What authors, or books have influenced you?

In the theatre, I am influenced by the works of Samuel Beckett, Mickle Maher and David Mogolov. 
In a wider scope, I like Hemingway a lot. And William Gibson. And Elizabeth Gilbert.

Walt Disney has had a big effect on me, too. Does that count?

What are you working on now?

My latest play is called THE YETI IN THE AIRPORT LOUNGE and will go up in Dallas in December 2015.

Also, I'm directing a play I co-wrote with my friend Jeff Hernandez called NIGHT OF THE TARANTUBEARS. It goes up early next year.

What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?

This one, here on the AesomeGang website, maybe?

Actually, I have gotten a lot of traction with Facebook.

Do you have any advice for new authors?

Well, I'm sort of a new author myself, but here is something that helped me...

Ignore that phrase “Write what you know.” Ignore it because, seriously, what’s the alternative? Writing what you don’t know?

As an alternative I would offer “Write what you wanna see.” This one works if you are writing for the stage. If you are writing for readers, then phrase it like this… “Write the book you would want to read.”

What is the best advice you have ever heard?

Fight to stay excited. I heard that from a graphic designer named Brandon Rike.

What are you reading now?

I am actually reading non-fiction at the moment. I am almost done with T. Harv Eker’s SECRETS OF THE MILLIONAIRE MIND.

What’s next for you as a writer?

I am working on another one-person show about a man with one of the highest IQs in the world. He may have solved one of the biggest problems plaguing humanity, but because he has a heavy southern accent and no credentials he is overlooked by the academic system. The working title of that one is called BARTHOLOMEW CLADWELL COULD SAVE US ALL.

If you were going to be stranded on a desert island and allowed to take 3 or 4 books with you what books would you bring?

I’d bring a collection of Shakespeare, of course. I’d also probably take the collected stories of Hemingway, MEDITATIONS by Marcus Aurelius, Peter Brooks’ THE EMPTY SPACE and a book called ZEN AND THE ART OF MAKING A LIVING by an author named Laurence Boldt. That last one is actually filled with way more than the title implies.


Brad McEntire’s Social Media Links
Twitter Account
Pinterest Account


Original post... HERE


Dec 7, 2015

I am on the New Play Exchange


I was reminded recently on Facebook by my good friend/colleague Greg Romero that I am listed on the New Play Exchange.

I signed up months and months ago. I figured I should give a heads up here on the blog. 

Visit me there... HERE

Nov 29, 2015

Pics from DINOSAUR AND ROBOT STOP A TRAIN

These photos are from the Sundown/ Audacity co-production that just ended its month-long run. The production featured Janelle Schroeder as Dinosaur and Robert Linder as Robot.




With audience volunteer






Nov 11, 2015

Neat little write-up about Dinosaur and Robot on DiscoverDenton.com

DINOSAUR AND ROBOT STOP A TRAIN
By Chris David Taylor | Sun. Nov. 8, 2015 | DiscoverDenton.com
Robert Linder and Janelle Schroeder in DINOSAUR AND ROBOT STOP A TRAIN
Friday night I found myself out on the town looking for something to do, and the Sundown Collaborative Theatre/Audacity Theatre Lab co-production of Brad McEntire’s “Dinosaur and Robot Stop a Train” fit the bill.
First produced as part of the Dallas’s FIT Festival in 2013, McEntire and Sundown have restaged this delightfully absurd piece of theatre in little d for two weekends before continuing for two more weekends in the historic Margo Jones theatre in Fair Park.
I wandered over from the always enjoyable Eastside, past the music pouring from the LSA Burger stage and into the Point Bank Black Box Theatre on Hickory. A simple set graced the space, a folding table, a projector and two small models of what I assumed were the stars of the show. McEntire’s work, which I am fairly familiar with, usually has an air of the whimsical and the nostalgic about it, the pre- show sound design adequately prepared me for the show to come. Snippets of old time radio static interspersed with news bulletins about missing ice cream and a coming news conference let me know what the format of the show was going to be.
Formatted like a press conference explaining their actions, a Dinosaur and Robot are brought from their respective time periods in an unexplained phenomenon at just the right moment to save a human girl playing on the train tracks near her house. The train is destroyed and the girl is allegedly saved, although she never makes an appearance for reasons that become clear later on.
Robot, played by Robert Linder, is the main spokes-robot in the play and he introduces his colleague who appears to be a Tyrannosaur played by Janelle Schroeder. We get the backstories of both characters and then jump to the present/past to hear about the incident referred to in the title of the show.
“Dinosaur and Robot Stop a Train” is mostly-family friendly and full of lighthearted jokes, physical humor and even some vaudeville as it can only be performed by a Dinosaur and Robot.
Dinosaur and Robot Stop a Train
Runtime: 1 hr. 5 mins.
Credits: Written and Directed by Brad McEntire
Sound Design by Danica Bergeron
Lighting Design by Jack Earl Piland
Cast: Robert Linder as Robot, Janelle Schroeder as Dinosaur
Original post... HERE


Nov 9, 2015

I BROUGHT HOME A CHUPACABRA now an ebook

Get your own copy of this delightful monologue show about a young woman who realizes maybe, just maybe, she connects with animals way more than with people...


Get your copy... HERE

Oct 29, 2015

Combining Artistic Oil and Water

Brad McEntire at "tech" for DINOSAUR AND ROBOT STOP A TRAIN


This post was written by Audacity Theatre Lab Artistic Director and Sundown guest collaborator Brad McEntire. He is the writer and director of the current show DINOSAUR AND ROBOT STOP A TRAIN.

I am usually a one-man operation. I have made it a goal of mine for years to gain the skill sets needed to not just write plays, but act in them, direct them, produce them, design them, market them and so on.  Why? Because I want to make theatre as an artistic expression. Theatre that uncompromisingly delivers my ideas and aesthetics to audiences as directly as possible. In short, I don’t want to do covers.

If you think about it, most theatre artists perform/ direct/design/ produce (and, yes, I think producing is a kind of art) works already written from the extensive canon of history or from the recent smattering of contemporary theatre du jour. Most theatre artists make theatre for the sake of it because they enjoy the act of simply “making it.” It doesn’t have a larger agenda. The act of it, if you’ll pardon the pun, is more important than the message it is delivering. To draw a parallel from the domain of music, it is similar to dad bands made up of musicians who get together to play covers of their favorite songs. The joy is in the getting together to jam.

And, to be clear, there is nothing wrong with this approach.

After all, outside of the playwright and devised theatre ( …of which Sundown has done its fair share of in the past) theatre is, predominantly, an interpretive art form. It is for the most part, also, a collaborative art form.

I am interested in an alternative to covers and committees. It is these two factors - originality over interpretation and authorship over collaboration - that I have been questioning and experimenting with for the last two decades. And experimentation is the key. After all, my company is called Audacity Theatre Lab. From these two factors I have begun to question every idea I’ve had about the theatre: its cultural impact, how it is marketed and funded, how casting and rehearsals happen, how it operates as a nonprofit or commercial activity and so on. I have tried, over time, to eliminate the ineffectual and focus on the essence of what I was trying to create.

Like my great mentor Peter Brook, I have, in my own way, in my own surroundings, made my art a laboratory to search out what is really essential and what can be trimmed away.

That search has led me to disparate fields of study: clowning, puppetry, solo performance, improv, actor-managers, profit share systems of Elizabethean theatres and on and on. It has led me outside the domain of theatre altogether to study small publishing houses, new media studios and art galleries.

All this is to give context, because the very next question is: BRAD, WHY THE HELL ARE YOU COLLABORATING WITH SUNDOWN?

On the outside it is not a good fit. My approach of the independent, self-reliant auteur theatre artist is diametrically different than the ensemble, group-think approach of Sundown. It is in their name: Sundown Collaborative Theatre.

So here’s the why (“Why” is very big in my world)…

1.) It gets lonely on the fringes. Sometimes, as in this instance, I wanna play in someone else’s sandbox. I didn’t always seek to do the one-man band thing. I started out as everyone, doing traditional theatre with ensembles – both temporary and more permanent. Working on D&R has been a delightful, and informative return to those days. It is just plain nice to play with others once in a while.

2.) They are supportive of me. This is my third interaction with Sundown, and the most immersive, to date. In 2013, Sundown commissioned and produced my play CARTER STUBBS TAKES FLIGHT. Then they included my short piece LIZARD BOY EATS A DORITO in last year’s Short Works series. Now they have brought me to the table to write and direct a piece with them. Maybe this is because they also believe in new works for the stage or because they, like me, believe in small, progressive, independent theatre. Whatever the reason, that they dig my stuff is flattering. That they want to produce it is supportive. It is good to go where I am wanted.

3.) Maybe I’m wrong. You know all those theories and pronouncements I made above? Yeah, those don’t mean crap if they are not continually questioned and brought up for debate. As I have observed and worked alongside the actors, administrators and designers here at Sundown, I have been continually called to question things that I have, over many years, come to take for granted. Whether I continue to employ these hard-won methods or not, the testing of them is really important. That’s how progress is made.

I hope the readers of this post will make their way out to see DINOSAUR AND ROBOT STOP A TRAIN. It is the magic result of combining artistic oil and water and, just maybe, coming out with something greater than the sum of its parts.

Details on dates/times/tickets and such…HERE


Original post from the Sundown Tumblr


Oct 19, 2015

DINOSAUR AND ROBOT rises again...


My company Audacity Theatre Lab is co-producing with a small and scrappy Sundown Collaborative Theatre.The result will be a remount of my favorite plays DINOSAUR AND ROBOT STOP A TRAIN.

A press conference is held. A dinosaur from the past and a robot from the future explain about their involvement with supposedly saving a stupid little girl from a speeding train.

The show will play in two different cities over four weekends. Playing...


October 30-November 1 and November 6-8 @ 8pm

Point Bank Black Box Theatre

318 E Hickory St., Denton, TX


November 12-15 and 19-22 @ 8pm

Margo Jones Theatre
1st Avenue, Dallas, TX 75210


To reserve tickets, email: boxoffice@sundowntheatre.org

More info at: AudacityTheatreLab.com



Oct 15, 2015

In Praise of Book Throwers | Histrionic Kablooie



A book is casually tossed, taken home and read, and it changes everything. Usually, the influence itself is the important part of the transaction, but what about the person that threw that book? 

Someone presents you with an opportunity, an introduction, some sort of connection. These are the things that help one form a career. Here, through another installment in my Histrionic Kablooie series, I explore this metaphor of "book throwers" and how hard it is to keep track of the "books" we throw and the ones we catch. 

Please subscribe to my YouTube channel at... http://www.youtube.com/dribblefunk


Oct 6, 2015

Pics from the 2015 Scranton Fringe

ROBERT'S ETERNAL GOLDFISH in performance

ROBERT'S ETERNAL GOLDFISH in performance at the Forage Space Gallery

Ruth and I in "The Electric City"

My show was on the cover of the festival guide

Touching up my "set piece" in the hotel.

Rehearsing my show in the stairwell of the hotel.


Sep 30, 2015

ROBERT'S ETERNAL GOLDFISH at the Scranton Fringe


My solo show ROBERT'S ETERNAL GOLDFISH will play at the first ever Scranton Fringe Festival October 3 (@ 6:30 PM) and October 4 (@ 2 PM).

The show concerns a misanthropic man named Robert J. Roberts. He hates the world. He particularly hates people. Pretty much all people. After a series of strange events lead him to become the unlikely custodian of a magical goldfish, Robert's misanthropic views are seriously challenged. Can a person be frustrated into being a better human being?

Playing at The FORAGE SPACE310 N WAShington Ave, Scranton, PA 18503

Tickets and info ... HERE


Sep 22, 2015

Pics from the 2015 1MPF




Last month, two of my plays were presented by Kitchen Dog Theater as part of the 2015 Dallas One Minute Play Fest. I did the 1MPF last year. I was pleased to contribute it again. I was on the road when the plays were put up with a lot of other great pieces from some other hard-hitting local playwrights. I didn't get to see the production that went up at the Greer Garson Theatre at SMU. I recently got some great pics. Looking at them, I totally wish I had been there.

A CAUTIONARY COMMUTE
Ryan Lescalleet directed my one-minute play A CAUTIONARY COMMUTE, a sort of musical ode to DFW rush hour absurdity.



Jeremy Schwartz directed my one-minute play RUMBLESHANKS WANTS AN HQ in which my cyborg/ mad genuis would-be world conqueror character Captain Odysseus Rumbleshanks decides where to put his homebase, dropping hint after hint about the suitablenss of Dallas. Schwartz's interpretation was delightfully odd.


Aug 29, 2015

Aug 24, 2015

CYRANO A-GO-GO in Fresno, CA



In August, I performed at the Nanaimo Fringe Festival. While I am out on the West Coast, I'm also performing my solo show CYRANO A-GO-GO at an event sponsored by the Rogue Fringe Festival in Fresno, California. It is called "The Seattle-To-Fresno Mini-Fringe". There will be lots of other great performers in it as well.

Performances at the Mia Cuppa Caffe, 620 E Olive, Fresno, CA 93728

CYRANO A-GO-GO plays:

Thurs. Aug 27th @ 7:30pm 
Fri. Aug 28th @ 9pm 
Sat. Aug 29th @ 4:30pm

Tickets $10. For more information head over to... HERE