Everyone here knows that Adam Rapp is one of my favorite playwrights. i’ve seen 99% of his work that’s been produced in the city since I saw Red Light Winter in 2006. I wasn’t sure I’d be able to make his reading/talkback/signing about The Hallway Trilogy at the Drama Book Shop today, but luckily we packed it in at a decent hour at work and I ran two blocks over.

He’s very visibly not entirely comfortable speaking in public, which is expected because he’s a playwright, not an actor. He looked down most of the time, avoiding eye contact. He read a short passage with the woman from the Theater Communication Group from The Hallway Trilogy, answered several questions about the genres he writes about, the characters he often writes, and a few questions about The Hallway Trilogy itself.

Then Nick Lawson and the actress whose name I can’t remember came up (there was actually a number of cast members from the off-Broadway production a few years ago in attendance) and read part of a scene from Paraffin (the second in the trilogy). Afterward he took more questions and I asked if he will ever write for Broadway, knowing that he’s turned down Broadway before because it’s not where his audience is. He said he’s turned down Broadway twice and since the New York Times is not a big fan of his, he doesn’t think there are any producers who’d take a chance on him anytime soon. (He jokingly said that he needs to wait for new critics to come to the Times.)

Afterward he signed copies of his plays so I bought a copy of The Hallway Trilogy (because it’s an awesome body of literature, duh), asked him a few questions about Red Light Winter on screen (he hopes they’ll start filming in January), shook his hand, and headed out. 

I’m seeing all three parts next Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.  I initially wanted to do all three parts in a day but this works too.  I’m excited beyond words.  These are what the three parts are about:

Part 1, Rose takes place on the evening of November 28th, 1953, the day following the death of Eugene O’Neill (directed by Rapp).

Part 2, Paraffin is set on the first evening of the 2003 New York City blackout (directed by Aukin).

Part 3, Nursing is set in 2053 in a disease-free New York when the tenement has been transformed into a museum where young men and women in need of cash are injected with old-fashioned diseases for the amusement of the public (directed by Cullman).

I wish I knew how Rapp came up with his ideas.