On the morning of September the 24th, Steve Boyer came here to take the “Basement Steps” of the play apart, take them to the to the top floor of the Battery Park and re-assemble them. I went down town around ten and sat at table with David Novak and Steve while they finished their blueberry muffins and coffee.We tried the microphone because the room's ceiling is high making sound hooty. Then Steve put the sides on the steps. I walk to the top, David the director, listens. An African-American man comes in to sweep, says his name is Charles. Says he was a bell captain, “in the olden days.”I tell him of listening to hundreds of children singing in that room, auditioning for Johnny Haber's Tanglewood Children'sTheatre, wanting to be mice in Cinderella or munchkins in Wizard of Oz.We sigh for the olden days.
Out on the roof, an elderly man named Fred tells me he's lived two lives. “The first about mind and body. This one is about soul.”
That night, the room fills up, maybe fifty people. The western sun is seen behind tall curtains Steve put up to keep the light out of my eyes.Steve wanted a story. I tell a mountain tale about Old One Eye .Vera, one of the residents in this residence for the elderly,grins. She's lived in Asheville all her life.
Lightheaded from the laughter following the story, I introduce David who introduces me and sets the stage for the first scene. I walk up the steps. The ceiling is way up there. Not close to my head like in my basement. I think, “What am I doing here? I'm afraid of heights.” Turn and lose the words for a second that feels like an hour.The scene ends with Mariah, reading, “There was an old woman who went up in a basket nineteen times as high as the moon.” Applause. I tell of a trip out to California to see the redwoods. “Their roots don't go deep. They intertwine. So those trees taller than any others end up holding each other up.”So ended the first presentation.
We have a campaign to seek support for our expenses as we move towards the full production of our play at BC Stage in November. You can help! Go to this link on Kickstarter.com to see our project: http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1028781595/get-old-woman-in-the-basement-on-the-stage