Tag Archives: All Tomorrow’s Parties

Bombardment Episode 6: A Glittering, Crystal Price Tag


Splattworks continues its presentation of Bombardment, a two-act drama by Steve Patterson. The author will attempt to post an installment each day, but, if events intercede, installments may occur a day or so apart. So please be patient.

[EPISODE 6]

CORNO: Evening, dear. You look a fright. Nothing to say? You? The old silent treatment? What could I have done? Too much time at the office? Neglected your delicate filigree of need? Philandering? Me? Come now. Why would I want anyone else? You’re a goddess. Very nearly. (Sits beside her.) Perhaps you weren’t always a goddess. Maybe I wasn’t always a god. Even those born to it must be proven. As must those, my dear, who have risen to their esteemed positions through more circuitous routes. Through sweat or marriage or combinations of the two. Perhaps you feared, from experience, that you could be replaced by firmer flesh and more malleable aspirations. A tactical error. Happens when one brings intrigue into nostalgia. If anything about that formless creature attracted me, it was her resemblance you! Ah, strike that. Um, well, um…the wench had already been paid for! I was supposed to let that go to waste? You know how you feel about waste. I did as expected. As taught. If a grape dangles above one’s mouth, one eats. With savor. Ever seeking perfection. It’s right there. Waiting. Dangling. A glittering, crystal price tag. Hell. Let us simply kill the damned servants and start anew! No shame in admitting a mistake! There’s plenty to pick from, and they cost a pittance! A nice polished skein of muscle for you! And for me. . .for me, a creature of…ice. Whose very touch would freeze. Who is there but to look upon, as to say: as perfect as you are, you’ll never come even this close to my true desire! My purest love! That’s you, dear. There is a time for a man to grow up. Accept his place. I have arrived at that crossroads, and realize I was…perhaps miscalculating. So just. . .pull yourself together. We’ll go on as we’ve always gone. The choice is yours. That’s an order. Get up, Aretha. Quit playing around! (Shakes her.) Get up, goddamn it! It’s morning! It’s past-morning! I’m not lying to you! (Pulls her into his arms. She’s limp.) Goddamn, woman, this just isn’t done! Sleeping in all day! What will that cook say? Only one for breakfast, sir? What about the guests? They’ll long to see you. You know how they are. The way they talk. Then the pictures. The rumors. Rot in the magazines. Goddamn it! I can’t do this alone!

CORNO shakes her. She doesn’t respond. He lets her sink down. Lights fade to silhouette the players. In the background, the sounds of planes return.

CORNO: Ah. That will be fine. Your services are no longer required. Presently. (Planes louder.) Abort your mission. That’s your commander-in-chief talking. (Planes louder.) I said your presence…. Hello? Will no one in this kingdom play the slightest attention to their…? Those are my planes? Surely a radio problem. A failure to communicate. Misplaced coordinates. Friendlies about to correct their…. (Planes deafening.) Or. Perhaps not.

Lights out. Rolling thunder of airstrike. Planes and bombs fade out.

[To be continued]


Let’s Get Plowed

Warning: serious fun ahead.

Portland is about to launch an inaugration of its own: the Fertile Ground City-Wide Festival of New Work. From January 23rd to February 1st, theatres all over Portland have committed to staging new plays, from full productions to concert readings. It’s kind of like a South-by-Southwest music festival but for theatre, where you can buy a pass and theatre-hop for a couple weeks. Or you can by a button and get into shows at a discount. (You can also just buy tickets regularly, of course.) It’s a grand experiment, and the Portland theatre community, especially playwrights, hope it’s a smashing success that becomes an ongoing, annual event. No matter how it turns out, it’s great to see theatre companies take a chance on something new. For more info, go to Fertile Ground. Special thanks to Tricia Pancio (there’s imp herself, above right) for being the little-engine-that-could get this thing going. She’s worked her ass off, and Portland theatre community (and the whole city) owe her a big round of applause.

And…yes: I’ll have something in the festival. PlayGroup, the writers group I belong to at Portland Center Stage will present….

Open City by Althea Hukari, Shelly Lipkin, Ellen Margolis, Steve Patterson, Andrea Stolowitz, Patrick Wohlmut, Nick Zagone, and Matthew B. Zrebski
Portland Center Stage Playgroup

Festival Dates: Feb 2 at 7:30 pm

For this group show created by PlayGroup (whose previous escapades include The Clearing, Frenching the Bones and Ten Tiny Playlets) and directed by Matt Zrebski, each playwright pulled a Portland location and a cast size out of hat, then went to work on a short play inspired by those circumstances. The result, presented in rehearsed concert form, is a kaleidoscopic vision of the Rose City that adds up to a town we all recognize.

Venue: Main Stage, Gerding Theater at the Armory (128 NW 11th Ave)

And the fabulous Gary Garrison, Executive Director of Creative Affairs for the Dramatists Guild, will be visiting our fair city on Saturday 31, 2008, speaking at at Portland Center Stage’s Ellen Bye Studio Theater from 1:30-3:00 PM about all things playwright, followed by a town hall discussion about playwriting in Portland and Oregon in general.

More to come on that as well, but it’s a sign that (a) the Fertile Ground Festival is going to be one hell of a special event; and (b) Portland’s playwriting community is beginning to be recognized beyond the borders of Multnomah County.

As Hunter Thompson would say: good craziness.