These Familiar Spirits

2 posts

A first table(t) reading!

As we quickly make our way through a first, rought draft of These Familiar Spirits, Julia and I wanted the chance to hear what we’ve written so far read outloud for the first time… mostly just to make sure it makes sense and we’re on the right track. So we enlisted some of our most trusted friends and collaborators (some stretching back over two decades!) to do a cold reading and see what we have!

Beyond being excited about what we’ve written, tonight was the best reminder that there’s nothing like longstanding collaborations with wonderful actors who know your work and know your heart to make you feel invincible (and not at all embarrassed, which is how I normally feel hearing anything for the first time.) I feel so lucky to have LaRaisha Dionne, Sukari Jones, Allison Lian, Ellen Macy, Allison Posner, Lynne Marie Rosenberg, Libby Servais, and Rich Silverstein as an integral part of my writing and my life!

(And the verdict from the read? These Familiar Spirits is a moooooood. Now back to writing!)

These Familiar Spirits

Julia and I are thrilled that our wonderful friends at Flint Repertory Theatre have commissioned us to write our next musical, These Familiar Spirits!

The musical imagines a reunion of the “afflicted girls of Salem” twenty-three years after the end of the witch trials as they return to Salem Village for the funeral of one of their own. (We like to say that the elevator pitch would be “The Crucible meets The Big Chill.“) The women have to face each other and their shared past and the harms they felt and caused… and probably encounter (or participate in?) some magic along the way!

We’ve been talking about the story and doing research and writing some exploratory songs for the last few years – you may have already heard “I Remember Summer” or “Scar” (starting around 26:30) – but we are so excited to get to work on writing the show itself and digging into a brand new world fully. And we’re even more excited to be doing so with everyone at Flint Rep… It’s an honor to get our first full commission from one of our favorite places!

We’ll be working on the piece over the course of the year with a few developmental steps in Flint and beyond, so keep an eye out for more information soon!