Episode 489. “Long Lost” Opening

”We opened the world premiere of William Shakespeare’s Long Lost First Play (abridged) last weekend at the Folger Shakespeare Library as part of the international hoopla surrounding the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death in 1616. We go backstage behind the scenes to talk about the difference between previews and openings, Read more…

Episode 488. Studying Reduced Shakespeare

”Doctoral candidate Ronan Hatfull is visiting Washington DC from the University of Warwick in Coventry, England. He’s here to research 21st Century interpretations of Shakespeare, and focusing on the work of the Reduced Shakespeare Company. We asked Ronan to talk about his dissertation and explain the origins of “Shakespop”, the dangers of Bardolatry, Read more…

Episode 479. Designing Stage Sets

”As Austin Tichenor begins to direct his adaptation of Jasper Fforde’s The Eyre Affair at Valparaiso University, Assistant Professor of Design/Theatre Alan Ernstein talks about the job of the set designer and about the fun and challenges of creating a space for a play to happen. Featuring the joys of working in Read more…

Episode 473. Meet Aaron Posner

”Playwright and director Aaron Posner (Stupid F*cking Bird) talks about his celebrated production of The Tempest at Chicago Shakespeare Theater, his upcoming production of Midsummer at the Folger Theatre, and his ongoing exploration of the classics using both reverence and irreverence. Featuring the importance of populism, the fun of making plays you want to see, the gift Read more…

Episode 467. Holy Humor Sunday

”Not only are our shows fun and entertaining, but apparently we’re doing the Lord’s work! Pastor Robert Lewis discusses Holy Humor Sunday, the post-Easter celebration that honors the great joke God played on Death. Featuring the power of communion, essential differences between Pope Clement XV and Pope Francis, comparing actors to itinerant Read more…

Episode 464. Writing “Almost, Maine”

Playwright John Cariani (who’s also an actor from the original Broadway casts of the musicals The Band’s Visit and Something Rotten!) talks about writing his play Almost, Maine, one of the most popular and widely produced scripts in the U.S. Among many surprises, John reveals love stories for character actors, F. Read more…

Episode 456. Broadway’s “Something Rotten!”

Three of the stars and original cast members of the hit Broadway Shakespeare musical Something Rotten! — Heidi Blickenstaff, John Cariani, and Brad Oscar (pictured) — talk about the process of creating an original musical, from casting through rehearsals to last-minute changes right up to opening night. Featuring excerpts from the score, the joys Read more…

Episode 444. The New Pages

”Authors Reed Martin and Austin Tichenor talk about the development process of their ninth stage collaboration William Shakespeare’s Long Lost First Play (abridged), and reveal the joys and anguish of the writing process, shuffling of ideas and scenes, the five stages of writing, the pleasures of research, the discoveries of rehearsal, Read more…

Episode 441. Shakespeare’s Lost Play

”No, not Cardenio. Not Double Falsehood. In a strangely treasure-filled car park in Leicester, we have stumbled upon the literary holy grail — William Shakespeare’s Long Lost First Play (abridged). The RSC’s tenth stage show will premiere in April 2016 at the Folger Shakespeare Theatre in Washington DC, and this week Read more…

Episode 429. 2014’s Top Podcasts

”Only two months late comes our second annual round-up of the Top Ten most downloaded episodes of the Reduced Shakespeare Company Podcast in 2014. Featuring not-so-surprising appearances by the UK cast of The Bible: The Complete Word of God (abridged); conversations with Mike McShane, Adrian Scarborough, and Sara Gmitter; fantastic Alan Partridge Read more…

Episode 428. The Artist Rolls

”Have you ever wanted to analyze an artist’s work through random roles of a twenty-sided Dungeons & Dragons die? Of course not! But that’s exactly what Jamie Gower and Sean Mitchell do on their podcast The Artist Rolls. This week we hear excerpts and outtakes from their full interview with Read more…

Episode 426. Marin Theatre Company

”Jasson Minadakis is the Artistic Director of one of our favorite hometown Bay Area theaters, the Marin Theatre Company, and he talks with us candidly about his work, our work, and MTC’s place in both the Bay Area and the national conversation. Featuring engaged audiences, issue-driven theatre, differences between Cincinnati and Read more…

Episode 424. Comedy’s Seriously Funny

”Austin Tichenor talks about The Complete History of Comedy (abridged) with Julie Motz, host of Arts Desire on KWMR in Point Reyes, California. Featuring some great laughs, “incisive political commentary,” surprising poignancy, a terrible hint about the RSC’s next show, a special appearance by Adrian Scarborough (who’s busy in LA shooting this), and finally the best reason Read more…

Episode 417. Comedy Cast Notes

”Chad Yarish and Dan Saski, two of the original cast members of the workshop production of The Complete History of Comedy (abridged), attended the first performance of the West Coast Premiere of the RSC production at the Marin Theatre Company, and shared their thoughts about how the show has changed Read more…

Episode 415. Dudes Talkin’ Comedy

”Paul Harris, host of “The Biggest Little Morning Show in the Afternoon” on the Big 550 KTRS in St. Louis, chats with Dominic Conti and Austin Tichenor about The Complete History of Comedy (abridged), and gets us to reveal forgotten lines, the evolution of jokes, comic influences, important research, the Read more…

Episode 397. Science Fiction Theatre

”Science fiction as a genre isn’t particularly well-represented in the theatre, but playwright Michael Bernard is hoping to change all that. His play Alien The Family was recently presented at Sci-Fest: The Los Angeles Science Fiction One-Act Play Festival, and this week discusses the scarcity of science fiction in theatre, Read more…

Episode 391. The Director’s Job

”Jessica Thebus teaches Directing at Northwestern University and has directed classics and world premieres across the country at such theaters as Oregon Shakespeare Festival, the Huntington Theatre in Boston, the Kennedy Center, Steppenwolf, the Goodman, and Lookingglass Theatre, so she’s the perfect person to explain just what it is a Read more…

Episode 389. Jacques Lamarre’s Journey

”From the box office to the Vatican to drag queens (oh my)! Jacques Lamarre has not had a typical journey to becoming a playwright, yet his most recent work I Loved, I Lost, I Made Spaghetti is being produced around the country, including at one of our favorite places Cincinnati Read more…

Episode 388. Returning To Edinburgh

”It’s been too long, but we’re finally returning to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival this August 2014 to perform the European premiere of The Complete History of Comedy (abridged). Reed Martin and Austin Tichenor talk about the changes they’ll have to make to adapt the script for European and international audiences, Read more…

Episode 383. Meet The Darwins

”Playwright Sara Gmitter talks about her new play In The Garden: A Darwinian Love Story (now getting its world premiere at the Lookingglass Theatre Company in Chicago), which explores the long and successful romance between Charles and Emma Darwin: A woman who believed in God and heaven and salvation — Read more…

Episode 366. Serpent of Venice

”Pocket of Dog Snogging returns! New York Times Best-Selling author Christopher Moore discusses his Shakespeare-inspired comic novels Fool (a retelling of King Lear from the jester’s point of view) and his latest The Serpent of Venice, which combines Othello, Merchant of Venice, Edgar Allan Poe, and a sea monster. Featuring Read more…

Episode 361. A Comedian’s Prayer

”Reed Martin, Dominic Conti, and Austin Tichenor take a break from rehearsing the world premiere of The Complete History of Comedy (abridged) at Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park. The boys talk about how it’s going and share typical rehearsal room antics, excerpts from the show, a discussion of fools both Shakespearean Read more…

Episode 360. Austin Tichenor’s ‘Frankenstein’

Austin Tichenor’s adaptation of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein is getting new life, with a new production and published acting edition. Austin talks to director Rob Richards about the current production and consider the ideal interpreters of 19th-century Romantic authors, some genius casting notions, the dangers of polite acting, the close relationship between laughter and screams, a special appearance by newly elected Senator Cory Booker, dodgy Jeff Goldblum impressions, and the nature of monstrosity. (Length 19:15) (Pictured: Matthew Geary as The Creature in the 2013 Phillips Exeter Academy production. Photo by Cheryl Semter. Used by permission.)

Episode 354. Playwright Anthony Clarvoe

”Anthony Clarvoe‘s plays (Pick Up Ax, Ambition Facing West, Ctrl+Alt+Delete, etc) have been produced all over the US in many of the same theaters we play, yet despite us having many friends and colleagues in common, our paths have never crossed until now. Anthony talks about his life as a Read more…

Episode 201. Endings Are Important

”We’ve discussed our writing process before, but this week we talk about designing effective openings and killer endings. Featuring stumbles and fumbles, happy accidents, show construction, meticulous planning, adherence to form, template deviation, and impertinent comparisons to both Shakespeare and the Beatles. (MP3. Length 22:15)