Oct 9, 2019

Interview in VoyageDallas


Nice interview in VoyageDallas as part fo their "Hidden Gems" series. Read the whole thing... HERE

Meet Brad McEntire of Audacity Theatre Lab in Carrollton

Today we’d like to introduce you to Brad McEntire.
Brad, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I am a theatre artist. I work mostly as a playwright, performer, director and producer. I run a small company called Audacity Theatre Lab. Here’s how that came about…
I studied theatre as an undergrad at the now-sadly-defunct College of Santa Fe in New Mexico and then later earned a Master’s degree at Texas Woman’s University. I had grown up around Dallas and after brief stints living in London and New York, I returned to the area. In 1999, I started a small theatre group called Audacity Productions. That lasted until 2006 when I left to work overseas and the company dissolved. We were sort of this scrappy, little garage-band sized company that performed in found spaces, local festivals and outdoor amphitheaters. We did a lot of new works by emerging playwrights around the country. We had a satellite sketch comedy troupe called Mild Dementia that was pretty active. It was a rollicking time. I wore many hats and the whole thing was a lesson in learning by doing.
In 2008, I restarted the company with the name Audacity Theatre Lab. The mission shifted to an emphasis on small, personal, original projects exclusively created in-house. We strive to support the artists first and their ideas. The artist, in turn, can then serve the community directly. Over the last few years, we’ve become known for supporting and developing one-person shows. Since 2014 Audacity has produced an annual solo performance festival called Dallas Solo Fest, bringing performers in from around the country along with local and regional performers.
Despite a few years as a commercial actor, I have seldom really been a traditional jobbing actor around town. I don’t audition for outside projects that often, though I will sometimes accept acting or directing gigs at theatres around town if they call.
Nowadays, I am one of the core members of the company, still serving as Artistic Director of Audacity Theatre Lab. I develop my own work and often direct and act in those pieces as well. Throughout the year, I travel around North America to various venues and “fringe” theatre festivals performing one of the quartet of solo shows I’ve developed through Audacity over the last decade.
I recently became a parent (my wife and I have a nearly three-year-old toddler) and my priorities have changed a bit. My theatre activities have slowed a bit over the last few years, but also deepened. A lot of my recent work has been more personal, more bold and more idiosyncratic than it was before I became a dad. I have been concentrating lately on further developing my own voice as a theatre artist and trying to create a lasting body of work.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
I would not say it has been smooth and it definitely has not been linear. There have been setbacks and roadblocks all along the way. I am naturally restless and I seem to stick my fingers into many pies. Because of this, I have a very wide scope of interests and skills, but I am not terribly specialized. I have noticed, over the years, that the result of this generalized approach is that my career has moved at more of a glacial pace than if I had picked and then stuck with a single discipline. After years of work in my field, in my town, I am extremely, painfully aware of being a “hidden gem.”
As I moved from acting into playwriting, directing, producing and so forth, I stumbled quite a bit, trying to figure things out. I still stumble sometimes. Again, a lot of my journey has been learning by doing.
I have had some wonderful help along the way. My good friend and fellow theatre artist Jeff Swearingen was a great collaborator, especially in the early days. My friend Grant Knutson, who runs an outfit called Minion Productions out of Seattle has served as Associate Producer of the Dallas Solo Fest and has been a wonderfully helpful colleague. And my wife, Ruth, continues to be a supportive presence. There have been many more who have helped nudge me onward in large ways and small. I am supremely grateful for them.
So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Audacity Theatre Lab story. What should we know?
Audacity Theatre Lab is a scrappy, fiercely independent theatre collective. Started, in its current iteration, in 2008 Audacity has developed its own intimate, subversively sophisticated, all-original approach. The troupe stays small, with just a few members at any given time. The members of the theatre write and perform their own original stories that are often small in scale, but epic in scope. Sometimes bizarre, sometimes dark, sometimes silly. The plays created by the artists of Audacity are all produced with simplicity, determination, and honesty. Using an economical means of production for a variety of original projects, the aim of the company has evolved over time to encompass one clear goal: make deeper and deeper, rather than larger and larger, works for the stage.
The mission of Audacity Theatre Lab is to exist as a platform for the imaginations of a collective of individual theatre artists. The artists of ATL are empowered to use the company as an outlet for the creation of new theatre projects, be they bold re-imaginings of existing works or the incubation and exploration of completely original works for the stage.
Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
I think luck comes to those that are ready to recognize opportunities when they arise. If a person isn’t ready for it, he or she probably won’t even see it as a potential adventure. But if one is prepared, that person might just see an amazing path open up before his or her eyes.
For me, this has shown up in many ways. I have uncovered some great collaborators who were undiscovered gems when I first encountered them. Because I have kept my theatre company small and flexible, we have been able to leap on certain opportunities when they’ve arisen.
The times where luck has worked against me are usually times when I did it to myself. Those were times when I didn’t listen to my instincts. I guess I could consider it ill-fortune, those times when I couldn’t quite see or wasn’t quite prepared for what was to come.
Contact Info:
      
Read the original post... HERE
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Sep 6, 2019

Cyrano A-Go-Go to make surprise performances at Theatre Crude Fringe in OKC

I have been put in as a "pitch hitter" as part of the inaugural Theatre Crude Fringe in Oklahoma City. I will be taking my show Cyrano A-Go-Go which will be, by that time, fresh off a run at the Elgin Fringe in Illinois. All the details below...



Cyrano A-Go-Go is an exploration of one restless theatre artist's fascination with the 1897 play Cyrano de Bergerac by Edmond Rostand. A chance encounter with the script at a suburban library at the age of fifteen leads McEntire into a wonderful, and sometimes elusive, calling. Mixing the personal, historical and literary into a journey through Rostand's play McEntire puts a funny, warm, insightful spin on the usual coming-of-age one-man show.
Friday, September 27 at 10:00 pm
Saturday, September 28 at 1:00pm

Playing at the...
The Capital View Event Center, 
5201 N Lincoln Blvd, Oklahoma City, OK 73105

Tickets $15 and can be purchased... online HERE or at the door.

More Info... HERE


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Aug 26, 2019

Cyrano A-Go-Go playing at 2019 Elgin Fringe Festival


Cyrano A-Go-Go is an exploration of one restless theatre artist's fascination with the 1897 play Cyrano de Bergerac by Edmond Rostand. A chance encounter with the script at a suburban library at the age of fifteen leads McEntire into a wonderful, and sometimes elusive, calling. Mixing the personal, historical and literary into a journey through Rostand's play McEntire puts a funny, warm, insightful spin on the usual coming-of-age one-man show.
Thursday, September 12 at 7:30pm
Friday, September 13 at 9pm
Saturday, September 14 at 10:30pm
Sunday, September 15 at 4:30pm

Side Street Studio Arts, located at 15 1/2 Ziegler Ct, Elgin, IL 60120

Tickets $10

Info... HERE


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Aug 9, 2019

Behind-the-scenes of The Beast of Hyperborea



I created a new one-man show recently called The Beast of Hyperborea. I essentially wrote, designed and rehearsed it in about 5 weeks, which is a highly concentrated time-frame for me. In two recent episodes of my podcast The Cultivated Playwright, I discuss that rather stressful process leading up to the world premiere. In particular, I discuss the resistance I came up against that drained my time, energy, concentration and confidence. I also address seeing the project through, despite teetering on creative burnout.
In the second part, I explain how opening night went and how I deal with creative burn out.
Listen to the first part (episode 17)... HERE. The second part (episode 18) can be heard... HERE.
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Aug 2, 2019

Nice Write-up about HYPERBOREA on SharpCritic.com


Nice write-up from Christopher Soden on SharpCritic.com

This summer the annual Festival of Independent Theatres featured short plays addressing the theme of Coming of Age. The six I attended were: Leos Ensemble – small hours (Directed by Nick Leos) Lily & Joan Theatre Company Marilyn, Pursued by a Bear (Directed by Emily Burgardt) Imprint Theatreworks – Dirty Dirty Night Squirrel (Directed by Taylor Mercado Owens) WingSpan Theatre, Co – Jo & Louisa (Directed by Susan Sargeant ) The Very Good Dance Theatre – The 1st Annual Gay Show (Directed by William Acker; Choreographed By Danielle Georgiou) Audacity Theatre Lab – The Beast of Hyperborea (Created by Brad McEntire). Some evinced better than others, though just as in past summers, each had its particular quirks, its peculiar charms.

. . .


Brad McEntire’s The Beast of Hyperborea features an accountant who is horns-waggled into a trip to a remote island in search of a legendary monster. Like poor Bilbo Baggins, he’s not the least interested in risking physical and/or emotional harm for the sake of mind-bending adventure. Beast is a fairly traditional narrative souped up by McEntire to appeal to contemporary audiences. There’s a strong, able-bodied lady, who smokes cigars, and embraces danger with gusto. There’s a misogynistic, stuffy buffoon, a Baron proficient in the martial arts, and a Captain who’s more about canny nerve than bloviating. McEntire knows how to blend the touching with the fanciful, the astonishing with gravitas. While he sometimes seems to be winking at us, at other times his credulity gives this vivid monologue substance and humanity.
The Bath House Cultural Center presents: The 21st Annual Festival of Independent Theatres: Coming of Age, playing July 12th _ August 3rd, 2019521 East Lawther Drive, Dallas, Texas 75218. 1-800-617-6904.       www.festivalof independenttheatres.org
See original post... HERE
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Jul 23, 2019

Nice write-up in TheaterJones on Beast of Hyperborea

FIT Review: The Beast of Hyperborea

A "ripping yarn" in the grand old tradition, from Brad McEntire of Audacity Theatre Lab.


published Sunday, July 21, 2019


Warning: Spoilers!

Dallas — The Beast of Hyperborea, presented by Audacity Theatre Lab, takes its inspiration from fantastical works by the likes of Arthur Conan Doyle and H. Rider Haggard. Creator and performer Brad McEntire (the driving force behind this cutting-edge “theatre collective”) has put together a truly ripping yarn in classic Victorian style for his one-man entry in the Festival of Independent Theatres.

McEntire plays Edward Joseph Reade, a mild-mannered accountant and sole survivor of a doomed 1895 expedition to the mysterious isle of Hyperborea—fictitiously north of Scotland and south of the Arctic Circle—and home to the titular Beast. Presenting his tale as a sort of lecture to an "unseen" audience, Reade recounts how, after answering a newspaper advertisement seeking a bookkeeper, he was swept up into a series of ever-more dramatic and larger-than-life adventures.

All the characters are portrayed with dazzling nuance by McEntire: famed aeronaut Captain Saltwood; expert mountain climber and martial artist the Baron Frichte; and big-game hunter and all-around adventuress Marie Clemeneau. The daring crew, led by Saltwood, sets out to explore the mysterious and uncharted island where Saltwood’s comrade (and Marie’s father) met his end at the hands of the Beast, leaving behind him a journal detailing his discoveries. The trio of adventurers and the reluctant Reade begin to grow closer as they speed toward their destination, likening themselves to Dumas’ Musketeers. How tragic, then, that Reade alone survives the perilous journey and the violent confrontation with the Beast, and must shoulder the duty of presenting proof of the island’s (and the creature’s) existence.

On a simply lit stage with minimal set and sound design, McEntire commands the space and deftly avoids the common pitfalls of a one-man show. Each character he portrays is distinct without tipping into cartoonish excess. While his Reade is a quiet, self-effacing sort, ill-suited for adventures (as the Hobbits would say, “nasty, dirty, uncomfortable things—make you late for dinner”), Captain Saltwood is a bluff, squinting man’s man. Contrast them with the effete Baron (presented with a competent, if slightly obscure, Germanic accent) and the cool, daring Marie, who dispatches misogynists and monsters with equal √©lan. The audience was spellbound, reacting with gasps and laughter, and was a hairsbreadth away from outright cheering at an unexpected resurrection. (From the start we know all but one are doomed—but McEntire leaves room for surprise.)

The show’s final, silent moments, accompanied by a cleverly period-accurate slideshow, was unexpectedly poignant. Bravo to McEntire for bringing not only the thrills to his tall tale, but heart as well.

This one’s a “can’t miss” in my book.

» The Beast of Hyperborea is performed:
  • 8 p.m. Thursday, July 25
  • 8 p.m. Saturday, July 27
  • 5 p.m. Sunday, July 28
  • 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 3
» The 21st annual Festival of Independent Theatres runs through Aug. 3, 2019 at The Bath House Cultural Center. For more information, visit www.festivalofindependenttheatres.org or call 1-800-617-6904.

To see a breakdown of the groups and shows, go here.

To see reviews and more coverage of FIT, see our special section here.

NOTE: The spelling of character names have been corrected from the original article.

Original article... HERE

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Jun 24, 2019

The Beast of Hyperborea at FIT 2019


I am presenting the festival-premiere of a thrilling and humorous new one-person show. It is called The Beast of Hyperborea
This Victorian adventure tale concerns a fabled beast, a mysterious island and the brave team of explorers who set off to discover them both.

Playing as part of the 2019 Festival of Independent Theatres,
At the Bath House Cultural Center,
521 E. Lawther Dr. Dallas, TX 75218

July 13 - August 3, 2019

Performances on:
Saturday, July 20, 2019 @ 8 pm
Sunday, July 21, 2019 @ 5 pm
Thursday, July 25, 2019 @ 8 pm
Saturday, July 27, 2019 @ 8 pm
Sunday, July 28, 2019 @ 2 pm
Saturday, August 3, 2019 @ 2 pm

Tickets available... HERE
Picture
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Jun 11, 2019

Pics of CYRANO A-GO-GO at the 2019 Dallas Solo Fest

Here are a few photos of Cyrano A-Go-Go in its latest incarnation. The show played June 7-9 at the 2019 Dallas Solo Fest.




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