The Bard, the beer, the inspiration!

This past weekend, Sweet Tea Shakespeare pulled up stakes from the Holy Trinity Church, where we have been going strong with our two productions of Twelfth Night and As You Like It, and headed down to Dirtbag Ales for a “Twin Bill.” (Get it? Ha ha. I totally didn’t … someone had to explain it to me.) Anyway, as always with the magic of many hands, the players of the troupe had soon transformed a local microbrewery into an intimate stage gathering ready for the plays to begin.

We made it through the pre-show, and I headed over to the Blackstone Smokehouse & Pub table to get my fix of delicious lunch. As Duke Orsino bemoaned his lack of love life and Sir Toby Belch plotted to fix up his niece with the eminently unsuitable Sir Andrew Aguecheek, I stood at a table in the back with other troupe members and wondered aloud if it would be okay to order a pint. I mean, come on. We’re performing at a MICROBREWERY!!

“Of course,” was Jeremy Fiebig‘s reply. “In fact, I think it everything goes better if you’re a little buzzed.”


But in addition to being lucky enough to have found a group of performers who are always professional, extremely talented, creative and fun, I have also found a few other things.

Writing: Since joining the cast and the Worshipful Company of Spectacle Makers, I have shaken the rust and dust off the old writing gears, completing one short story, writing down the notes for another, submitting an essay for Sweet Tea, and creating many thousands of words on Steel-Toed Blues. Additionally, I’ve been having a mental blockage on an aspect of the book which has also shaken itself out. After a long drought of begging and pleading for words, this is most relieving. I credit the creative atmosphere of doing something that is new and challenging. Also, the sleep I’ve been getting now that Ladybug has started — mostly — sleeping through the night.

Music: Being forced to play and sing and rehearse has shaken the rust off my fingers and reminded me why I own four guitars. I haven’t gotten to the point of writing anything new … but there have been glimmerings of that possibility. So we shall see.

Boxing: It may seem strange that working with a Shakespeare production could inspire my gym time. Actually, it’s more like the two have been inspiring each other. Both activities require dedication, regular practice, and commitment. When I am feeling like maybe I’ll just relax and hang out, the routine I’ve carved out keeps me going back, and the intensity required helps me both make it through a muscle-failure inducing tabata session with Christina at All American City Gym as well as practicing so I can remember the chords at the end of “Let It Rain.”

New Year, new mission. New avenues of creativity spurring me on. We’ve got one more weekend of shows, and then it will be time to concentrate on finishing and editing Steel-Toed Blues and possibly auditioning for more theater opportunities. Until then, write, play, create on!

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