The new school year brings with it some exciting changes to our program offerings!!
Keep reading for some background & context, or just scroll down for the important stuff.
Carrying forward the rousing success of the Tangent Theatre Cooperative’s inaugural production of Viva La Resistance! this past June (and learning as much as possible from the challenges experienced along the way), we’re going to be attempting a completely new approach to kid-driven musical theater.
The traditional model—spending two months rehearsing a full production leading up to a single public stage performance—turned out to be less than ideal for a number of reasons. First, trying to get 20-30 families’ schedules to line up enough to have sufficiently-attended rehearsals several times a week is an obstacle that puts too much pressure on too many people; we all have more going on in our lives than just theater, and so a more flexible structure is needed.
Second, one of the Tangent Initiative’s primary goals is to maintain safe spaces for all of us to face our anxieties head-on and embrace them for the challenges & opportunities for personal growth that they offer, and so we’ve been putting considerable effort into thinking about how we can best include those kids who aren’t quite ready to take the stage, not to mention those of us who prefer to coordinate & contribute from behind the scenes and leave the spotlight to those more inclined. Involving the kids in technical production isn’t typically something that happens in elementary & middle school theater programs, so we’re aiming to develop systems that are both inclusive and sustainable, taking into account all of these considerations. It’s going to take some time to find our groove, and our journey will invariably hit some rough patches…but as we say on the bus, easy is boring!
Third, as amazing as our June performance was, despite the general chaos and the unfamiliar performance space and all of the related technical difficulties, the public performance felt inconsistent with and unfaithful to the spirit that drove us throughout the two months leading up to it. Every rehearsal included a reminder—sometimes from me, sometimes from the kids—that we were doing this for us. We were taking on such an ambitious challenge because we wanted to, not because our eventual audience would expect it. Then amidst all of the excitement and anxiety surrounding our one big night, we lost sight of that ideal, and we all felt it. Faced with this question of how to best address these challenges and avoid them in the future, we’re going to try a completely different approach: we’re simply not going to have an end-of-program summative performance, because we’re going to tell a story that doesn’t end.
And so, the Tangent Theatre Cooperative proudly presents….
OTHER LANDS: A MUSICAL TANGENT
The Flying Monkeys and the Space Reptiles have been chasing each other across the Multiverse for thousands of years. Their stories, and the stories of characters from many other fictional realms that we know and love, will be told through modern pop and broadway songs and presented as music videos. Our journey will take us through the looking glass to Wonderland; over the rainbow to Oz; to the second star to the right and straight on ‘til morning in Never Never Land; aboard the train at Platform 9 3/4 to Hogwarts; and on beyond to worlds not yet imagined.
Each month, we’ll pick 2 or 3 songs that everyone involved will work on, regardless of which afternoon(s) they’re joining us on the bus. We’ll be able to really dive deep into the production side of things, and everyone will have the opportunity to participate in and contribute to the overall project in the ways that respect and accommodate the individual interests and inclinations of the kids involved as well as the scheduling needs of their families. We’re going to need a lot of help on the technical side of things, and so this is a great opportunity for kids who want to get into theater and/or music & video production without being “required” to be on stage (or screen) as part of the deal.
As this is intended to be a year-long program (with potential for extension & expansion through next summer and beyond), periodic live performances will be held as best-of showcases curated & scheduled by the kids involved. Given the highly experimental nature of this endeavor, current registration options are limited to be in line with the Fall 2019 after-school enrichment schedule at Louisa Boren K-8 STEM in West Seattle, where the Tangent Bus will be located every afternoon. Once we get the initial wrinkles ironed out, continuing program registration options will be made available.
This program will run every Monday, Tuesday, and Friday afternoon beginning September 30th (not including days when school is not in session), from 3:40pm to 6:00pm. Because of the intentional flexibility built into the program model, families needing to pick up their kids before 6:00pm on any given afternoon don’t have to worry about disrupting rehearsals. It’s our job to work around the needs of your families, not the other way around!
The cost of the program is based on how many days per week (one, two, or three) your child will attend. And if you need to swap days here or there for whatever reason, not a problem: just get in touch and we’ll sort it out!
One afternoon per week (for 8 weeks): $200
Two afternoons per week (for 8 weeks): $300
Three afternoons per week (for 8 weeks): $350
Please note that this program is open to kids in 3rd-8th grade from ANY SCHOOL, not just those students currently attending K-8 STEM (which is why registration will take place via this website instead of the general school-specific program registration portal).
Lastly…YES, WE’RE STILL RUNNING DUNGEONS & DRAGONS!!
•Wednesday afternoons (10/2-11/20) 2:30pm-5:00pm, on the Tangent Bus at K-8 STEM. Open to kids in 3rd-8th grade from any school. $150 for eight weeks.
•Saturday afternoons coming soon!
Installment payment plans and partial scholarships are available for any & all families needing a little more financial leeway. Please contact us directly for more information or to make arrangements.