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Hi stranger.

Stay awhile. Look at some stuff I made. Then let's make something together.

Tiny Houses

Tiny Houses

by Chelsea Marcantel
Cleveland Playhouse March 23 – April 14 2019
Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park May 4 – June 2 2019
Director: Laura Kepley. Sets: Arnulfo Maldonado. Lighting & Projections: Elizabeth Mak.
Costumes: Amy Clark. Sound: Dan Perelstein.
Photography: Roger Mastroianni & Mikki Schaffner.

Tiny Houses is first and foremost an exercise on making the impossible possible. In the style of the 1980s rom-com set in the present, our two lead characters Cath and Bohdi leave NYC to move to Portland, Oregon to build a their own tiny home on wheels. What on the surface appears to be a bold move to suck the marrow out of life and take the path less traveled turns into a mess of different priorities and life objectives, as this ill-matched couple attempts and fails to build their house in the allotted 3 months. Enter Ollie, the haunted doll-selling eBay auctioneer, and Jevne, Bohdi’s ex and ASMR artist, and the home-building gets even further derailed.

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What this meant for the creative team was the challenge of building a tiny house onstage in the course of the 90-minute play without weighing this witty comedy about finding home down with lengthy transitions. This translated into fun songs, West Coast drizzles that turned into full-blown thunderstorms, projections indicating the passing of the weeks that also danced to the beat, and night-time shenanigans as our characters hurry to finish construction before winter.

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As we neared production and the writing settled, most of the scenes became split scenes, with online monologues interwoven with real-time scenes. Jevne does hairbrushing and tells stories to her YouTube followers, Ollie gives advice to his doll-buying clients, and Bohdi as a life coach leads his client on a guided meditation to help her give up smoking. Isolation and the back-and-forth between the analog and digital worlds was a real challenge for lighting!

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Look at the finished house though!

Macbeth

Macbeth