Tag Archives: arisia 2016

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Video recording of Mrs. Hawking production!

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Categories: base instruments, mrs. hawking, performance, Tags: ,

I am very proud to present the video recording of the fully produced Mrs. Hawking, the first installment of our series!

Mrs Hawking from sydweinstein on Vimeo.

This recording captures the Arisia 2016 performance on the main stage at the Westin Waterfront Boston. We were very lucky to have videographer Syd Weinstein and his crew run the cameras during our run, and he has edited together a dynamic, focused recording. What I love about it is that it captures many of the finer details of our story that might not be so clear onstage. I think it’s a great representation of all the hard work and craft coming together to tell this unique story.

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I’m also glad to have this because, since Mrs. Hawking has seen four runs over the last two years, it’s going to be retired from production for the time being. This will enable us to free up the time and resources to produce the subsequent installments. Having this recording will still allow people to experience it even though it’s no going to be performed in the near future.

That’s especially great for the upcoming June 10th staged reading of part three, Base Instruments. Watching the video will enable the audience to get up to speed with all the spectacle of the full production before experiencing the further story. So, for those of you who missed the performances at previous shows, or for those who’d like a closer look at all the nuances of the production, please check out this awesome video.

The staged reading of Base Instruments by Phoebe Roberts will go up on June 10th at 8PM at with the Bare Bones reading series, brought to you by Theatre@First.

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Mrs. Hawking and Vivat Regina accomplished at Arisia 2016

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Categories: mrs. hawking, performance, vivat regina, Tags:

We did it! We did it! We performed our first two installments, Mrs. Hawking and Vivat Regina, at Arisia 2016!

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Mrs. Hawking in progress

It was a great deal of work, rehearsing, preparing, and then setting up and tearing down two plays in a convention setting. But the cast and crew gave it their all and worked like champs. Despite all the challenges involved, everything came together. Our audiences were great, and gave great response. We did it. We did it.

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Vivat Regina in progress

We’ll be doing a postmortem on the process here, analyzing what we did and what will be good to remember for the future. But for now, we’re so grateful to everyone who helped make this strange serial theater experiment a reality. To the cast and crew, the audience, and the staff of , thank you all so much for your help and support bringing Mrs. Hawking and company to life.

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Our shows on the Arisia 2016 schedule!

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The schedule of events is available for Arisia 2016, and our shows are on it!

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We’re two weeks away from our opening night, and things are coming together beautifully! That means you should be making plans to come see us. Our performance times are as follows:

Mrs. Hawking
by Phoebe Roberts
8PM on Friday, January 15th
Grand Ballroom B

4PM on Saturday, January 16th
Grand Ballroom A

Vivat Regina
by Phoebe Roberts
1PM on Sunday, January 17th
Grand Ballroom B

At the Westin Waterfront Boston
425 Summer St, Boston, MA

We look forward to seeing you there! There are plenty of great events going on at Arisia alongside us, so be sure to check out the schedule to find out about everything you’d like to attend!

Mrs. Hawking by Phoebe Roberts will be performed January 15th at 8PM and January 16th at 4PM and Vivat Regina by Phoebe Roberts January 17th at 1PM at the Westin Waterfront Hotel as part of Arisia 2016.

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Winner of the Arisia membership raffle!

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All this week, we’ve been offering a chance to enter a raffle to win a full weekend membership to Arisia 2016. All you had to do was repost our show information page on social media with the hashtag #mrshawkingatarisia.

Today we’ve randomly drawn the winner! The recipient of our prize is:

@tinydragontori!

We’ll be in contact today, but feel free to reach out about how you’d like us to transfer the membership. Thank you to everyone who entered!

@tinydragontori, can’t wait to see you at our shows!

Mrs. Hawking by Phoebe Roberts will be performed January 15th at 8PM and January 16th at 4PM and Vivat Regina by Phoebe Roberts January 17th at 1PM at the Westin Waterfront Hotel as part of Arisia 2016.

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The new portrait of the Colonel

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Categories: performance, vivat regina, Tags: , , ,

You may remember that for last year’s Mrs. Hawking productions we made this portrait to serve as the framed photograph of the Colonel that hangs above the mantlepiece in the Hawking parlor.

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I liked this portrait because it was a genuine Victorian image, with a sort of quiet sadness in the look in the gentleman’s eyes. But now we are not only performing Mrs. Hawking, but also Vivat Regina, which you may have noted contains explicit reference to what that portrait looks like. Specifically, it’s a significant moment when Mrs. Hawking expresses her discomfort with Nathaniel’s resemblance to her late husband. With that resemblance being pointed out in the dialogue, it doesn’t really serve to have just any old person’s image hanging there for all the audience to see.

To that end, we made a new picture to go inside the portrait frame. This meant we temporarily had to cast the character of Colonel Reginald Hawking— with Jeremiah O’Sullivan, our actor playing the role of Nathaniel.

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We dressed Jeremiah in a military-style jacket and a costume mustache with spirit gum— after all, Mrs. Hawking says the Colonel has “whiskers” in that picture. This not only ensures the resemblance, it’s a nice hinting at stories to come. The Colonel is set to appear in part four of Mrs. Hawking, back before he was the Colonel, in flashbacks juxtaposed with a present-day story. I thought it would be cool to double cast Nathaniel and the Colonel in that piece, to convey not just their similarities, but to drive home to the audience how hard it is for Mrs. Hawking to see anyone but the Colonel when she looks at her nephew.

Mrs. Hawking by Phoebe Roberts will be performed January 15th at 8PM and January 16th at 4PM and Vivat Regina by Phoebe Roberts January 17th at 1PM at the Westin Waterfront Hotel as part of Arisia 2016.

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Arisia membership raffle

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Want to catch our shows at Arisia 2016, but the cost of membership is a little too high for you? Well, here’s your chance to win one for free in Mrs. Hawking’s Arisia membership raffle!

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We are raffling off one full weekend pass to the Arisia 2016 convention! This will give you complete access to all hours and events of the con in the Westin Waterfront Boston hotel January 15th through 18th.

To enter:

– Share the show information page on social media— Facebook, Twitter, G+
– Tag the post with the hashtag #mrshawkingatarisia
– Each share across the platforms counts as one entry
– Share across as many platforms as you like for additional entries

Entries will close on Monday, December 21st at 12AM. A winner will be drawn at random and announced at 12PM on the 21st. The selected person will provide us with their contact information so that we can transfer the Arisia membership into their name. We shall be pleased to have that person as our guest at our performances!

Happy sharing!

Mrs. Hawking by Phoebe Roberts will be performed January 15th at 8PM and January 16th at 4PM and Vivat Regina by Phoebe Roberts January 17th at 1PM at the Westin Waterfront Hotel as part of Arisia 2016.

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Mrs. Hawking on the radio 12/12!

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This Saturday, December 12th, Mrs. Hawking can be heard on the radio!

We’re a little over one month away from our shows at Arisia, so it’s time to get the word really out! To that end, we’ll be appearing on Beyond the Horizon Radio to talk about our shows! Tune in at 12PM EST to hear a live broadcast featuring Frances Kimpel, our Mrs. Hawking, Circe Rowan, our Mary Stone, and yours truly, the writer and director.

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We’ll be discussing our upcoming productions of Mrs. Hawking and Vivat Regina at Arisia 2016, as well as things behind the scenes, our process, and the story at large. Finally, we’ll be performing a selection from Base Instruments, the newly-released third installment, featuring the voices of Frances Kimpel as Mrs. Hawking, Circe Rowan as Mary Stone, and a certain someone else you know doing her best attempt at a Russian accent for new character Elena Zakharova.

Check us out at the Beyond the Horizon Radio website to hear the live broadcast at 12PM EST on Saturday, December 12th!

Mrs. Hawking by Phoebe Roberts will be performed January 15th at 8PM and January 16th at 4PM and Vivat Regina by Phoebe Roberts January 17th at 1PM at the Westin Waterfront Hotel as part of Arisia 2016.

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Performance times for Mrs. Hawking and Vivat Regina!

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Categories: mrs. hawking, performance, vivat regina, Tags: ,

We have been scheduled for times and locations for our upcoming performances at Arisia 2016!

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Mrs. Hawking
by Phoebe Roberts
8PM on Friday, January 15th
Grand Ballroom B

4PM on Saturday, January 16th
Grand Ballroom A

Vivat Regina
by Phoebe Roberts
1PM on Sunday, January 17th
Grand Ballroom B

At the Westin Waterfront Boston
425 Summer St, Boston, MA

Go here to sign up to attend Arisia 2016! Be sure to join us for the continuing story of the lady’s champion of London!

Mrs. Hawking by Phoebe Roberts will be performed January 15th at 8PM and January 16th at 4PM and Vivat Regina by Phoebe Roberts January 17th at 1PM at the Westin Waterfront Hotel as part of Arisia 2016.

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Mrs. Hawking and Vivat Regina at Arisia 2016

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Categories: mrs. hawking, performance, vivat regina, Tags:

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MRS. HAWKING
part 1 and 2

at Arisia 2016

presented by The Chameleon’s Dish

Mrs. Hawking
by Phoebe Roberts
8PM on Friday, January 15th
Grand Ballroom B

4PM on Saturday, January 16th
Grand Ballroom A

London, 1880— When Mary Stone accepts a job as housemaid to a fierce, brooding society widow, she is drawn into Mrs. Hawking’s heroic crusade as secret champion to society’s downtrodden ladies. Join us for this Victorian action caper, and explore what would happen if Sherlock Holmes were more like a lady Batman.

Cast
Mrs. Victoria Hawking – Frances Kimpel
Miss Mary Stone – Circe Rowan
Mr. Nathaniel Hawking – Jeremiah O’Sullivan
Mrs. Celeste Fairmont – Arielle Kaplan
Lord Cedric Brockton – Francis Hauert
Sir Walter Grainger – Jordan Greeley
Mr. John Colchester – Andrew Prentice
Miss Grace Monroe – Jennifer Giorno
Ensemble – Joye Thaller, Chris Denmead

Vivat Regina
by Phoebe Roberts
1PM on Sunday, January 17th
Grand Ballroom B

London, 1881— The continuing story of the lady’s champion of London! Mrs. Hawking is stern in training her new assistant, housemaid Mary Stone, in the art of society avenging. But when a mysterious lady under a false name brings them an impossible mission, our heroines must join all their varied strengths together to see justice done. The sequel to Mrs. Hawking, but requires no knowledge of the previous play.

Cast
Mrs. Victoria Hawking – Frances Kimpel
Miss Mary Stone – Circe Rowan
Mr. Nathaniel Hawking – Jeremiah O’Sullivan
Mrs. Johanna Braun – Joye Thaller
Mrs. Clara Hawking – Samantha LeVangie
Constable Arthur Swann – Matthew Kamm
Frau Kirsten Gerhard – Isabella Dollar
Ensemble – Chris Denmead, Sara Dion, Tegan Kehoe

Crew
Director – Phoebe Roberts
Technical Director – Bernie Gabin
Costume Designer – Jennifer Giorno
Sound Designer – Neil Marsh
Violence Designer – Arielle Kaplan
Run Crew – Eboracum Richter-Dahl
Makeup Artist – Jessicalee Skarry

At the Westin Boston Waterfront hotel
425 Summer St, Boston, MA

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Meet Circe Rowan, the actress playing Mary Stone

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Categories: character, performance, Tags: , ,

For a show, the playwright isn’t the only one with a responsibility to bring the characters to life. The actors who portray them have a great deal of power to make you invest emotionally, to fall in love with the people you’re watching. A story like this lives and dies on the strength of the characters, so to a large degree, your ability to connect rests on the strength of our cast. We’ve worked hard to get the right people together to make you believe in the story we’re telling, such as Circe Rowan, the actor portraying Mary, one of our heroes and the beating human heart of the story.

Circe Rowan as Mary

Circe Rowan as Mary

To give you a glimpse inside the process of making these characters real, I asked Circe a series of questions about how she goes about playing Mary. Here’s what she had to say about taking on the role.

What’s your theater background?

Circe: “I got my start early. Back in the mid-80s, my mother taught at a dance studio. A lot of the other instructors had older kids who were involved in community theater, and one year they put on a production of Alice In Wonderland, for which they needed a Dormouse. I was four, I could follow instructions, and standing up in front of a bajillion people didn’t scare me, so they put me in a mouse-eared onesie and plunked me down on stage to snooze through the tea party. I think I had two or three lines, even. Naturally, I was also in dance classes— one of the perks of Mom working for the studio! —and around the time I got to junior high, I also discovered I could sing. I’ve done all kinds of performance, off and on, ever since.”

How do you see the role of Mary and how do you approach playing the character?

Circe: “How do I approach the character? With a great deal of glee! I’m not a very big person, so I’m almost never cast as the party tank. Usually I’m the femme fatale or the detective. This time, I get to beat up my very own goon! It’s exciting.

“With Mary, I’m in the unusual position of playing a character who has to learn guile. I get to do a lot of comedy in the “undercover” scenes, as Mary is thrown into the spy game head-first by Mrs. Hawking, and a lot of pathos in the parlor scenes, where Mary learns how to best handle her employer. As an actor, any role where you play someone who’s learning to stop fooling themselves and start fooling other people is fascinatingly multi-layered.

“Some of Mary’s subtleties are not spelled out, but are pointers that, as an actor, I can hang bits of backstory on. The script makes it clear that, due to her background, Mary’s had more education that one might expect from a mere servant girl— she handles Mrs. Hawking’s appointment book and mail at various points, so she’s literate, and she ran her family household, so she would have to have basic arithmetic and the like. The second play also makes it clear that she has at least a smattering of British history. Her life was also rather lonely before she came to London and was hired on by the Hawking household, so I’ve put it all together and decided she got a lot of her ideas about being a hero from innumerable penny dreadfuls and adventure serials, which would have come over to India by boat, and which she probably cadged from the housewives and soldiers she grew up with.”

Circe Rowan as Mary

Circe Rowan as Mary

What do you find most interesting about her?

Circe: “Mary is oblivious to her own best qualities. There are lots of unusual things about her that she doesn’t seem to realize will be interesting, even valuable, to other people. Some of the things are explicit in the script. Mary has a forthrightness unusual for the time and her position, for example. She’s stubborn and stalwart, but still innocent enough to throw herself into the fray without hesitation, believing she can win.

“The way Mary sees herself is often very different than how the other characters see her, and it throws her off-balance when people react to what they see in her, rather than what she’s aware of. How other people see her is also colored by their own preconceptions, which only makes things more complicated. All her life, Mary has based her self-image on others’ assessments of her character, and back in India, all of those people were conventional, and wanted her to be conventional, too. In London, from the moment Nathaniel takes her coat and offers her a seat in the parlour, treating her like a guest instead of like a servant girl, she’s bombarded with new and sometimes very strange reflections of herself in the eyes of other people.

“Out here in real life, my field is somewhere in the vicinity of sociology and cognitive science, so trying to bring things like Johari windows to the stage is always interesting to me.”

What do you hope the audience takes away from your performance?

Circe: “Enjoyment! Mary is in many ways the audience stand-in. She’s an ordinary person who gets mixed up with superheroes. It’s strange and confusing to her at first, but she grows into it, and becomes a useful part of the team. I hope there’s a little something in her character that makes everyone in the audience say, “Yeah! If she could become a hero, maybe I could, too.””

And that is the person behind our hero Mary! Check us out at our upcoming performances to see the final result.

Mrs. Hawking by Phoebe Roberts will be performed January 15th at 8PM and January 16th at 4PM and Vivat Regina by Phoebe Roberts January 17th at 1PM at the Westin Waterfront Hotel as part of Arisia 2016.

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