Those who miss the intimacy of productions created at The Studio Theatre Tierra del Sol can now bring a taste of The Studio into their homes with a new virtual staged play reading series.
“Actors will have rehearsed a few times and will perform with scripts in hand or on music stands,” said Grace Zottig, stage manager at The Studio. “We will have most of our table work over Zoom meetings before we go to the space together and rehearse in person. The performance will then be recorded and edited for our streaming platform.”
From there, audience members can purchase a virtual seat for $10 through thevillagesentertainment.com, select a show date and receive access to a link to stream the show.
Although the show will not be recorded live, streaming will be live.
The first show in the series is Gina Femia’s “The Violet Sisters,” which will be streamed at 7 p.m. July 17, July 24 and July 31.
“‘The Violet Sisters’ is a family drama involving two sisters and the death of their father,” said Nathaniel Niemi, the show’s director. “There is a major rift between these two and when they are reunited and begin to unpack past hurts and trauma, they begin to really understand one another. The play is fast-paced, contemporary and full of life.”
Niemi said that The Studio team has been carefully picking plays that are exciting and have complex themes to explore. He added that directing them virtually has been both fun and a great challenge.
“There are always challenges with technology and pacing and energy when working in this medium, but the chance to reunite with some of our very favorite Studio family and dive into complex, dynamic pieces has been such a joy,” Niemi said.
The two sisters in “The Violet Sisters” will be played by The Studio’s artistic director, Whitney Morse, and Leslie Munson, who is on the production management team for
Each show will have a minimal set with lighting, sound, props and costumes, Munson said.
“The camera will be the audience in the space, while our patrons watch from home,” Munson said. “... Multiple cameras will be set up so that we can capture multiple angles and varying shots for filming. Everyone will have the best seat in the house.”
Munson said that creating theater virtually has given her a new learning experience
“I have learned how important theater and art in general are for so many people during difficult times,” she said. “All of these actors we have worked with have been grateful for the chance to keep performing. The design team is coming up with new ideas all the time to make virtual theater possible. We are all learning quite a lot.”
More staged reading shows will be announced soon.