8/30/2016 6:54 AM
Audrey's scripts are truth, which is why they hurt so much and feel so good. Every word counts and every line is important. The lack of clutter in Audrey's writing allows the audience to think and listen, and become submerged in the stories. Having a deep desire to be known and loved, the characters are as familiar as family, but are also new and fresh, and begging to be heard. As an actor, it is intimidating and thrilling to be able to get close to these creations. This collection is a treasure.
7/3/2016 6:52 PM
Each of the closely observed, deeply compassionate, and deceptively simple plays that comprise Audrey Cefaly's Love is a Blue Tick Hound present characters whose universal needs and very particular dilemmas alternately break our hearts and inspire us with their resilience. For all the disappointment the characters face, and only occasionally overcome, for the all the sense of resignation that informs some of them, these plays are exhilarating examples of the writer's craft. These are stories that reveal real truths with bracing and engaging honesty and vivid theatricality. These are characters who demand and deserve to be heard.
6/24/2016 3:21 PM
So I am carrying around my copy of Love Is a Blue Tick Hound, a collection of four short plays by Alabama native Audrey Cefaly. The stories are similar, they are all duets, they are offered as individual pieces or presentable together in an evening, each runs about 25 minutes, with relatively simple staging and a wide range of casting choices made possible by the generous style of the writing and by the author in the preface notes. I am carrying the book around with me because I need it. I need to know that stories like this are still possible, still being written, still coming out of the mind of a person in our society in 2016. With so much self-importance, braggadocio, greed and me-first mentality in the world today, for a modern writer to step back and offer simple, wonderful, twisted, tragic, beautiful moments of love on a stage...it makes the world a better place in which to live.
As I said, these plays are simple two-person stories, the theatrical equivalent of a Ramones concert, taking a simple two-chord concept and amplifying it in every direction you can think of. The style too is that of a Willie Nelson show, deliberate, American, meandering, quiet. The playwright makes particular mention of those quiet moments. That the silence becomes a character in itself, yet another contrast in today's "I've got to hear myself talking all the time" social atmosphere.
And love in the form of man's (or in this case, Fin's) best friend, a blue tick hound named Jake, who'll come when you call him. My favorite analogy of love is one that I have never heard or read anywhere else so I claim it as my own. It is that love is an impossible mathematical equation: two slightly non-parallel lines growing ever slightly closer into infinity yet never touching. Two people together, learning something new about each other every day for their entire lives, yet never knowing everything.
In Cefaly's world, those lines run non-parallel, parallel, intersect, cross over, intertwine, lay on top of and underneath each other, careen around and slam into each other headfirst and explode apart like a supernova star. Love is chaos. It's the truth. Whether we like or not. We can have all the idyllic notions of love we want, but it is an unpredictable rollercoaster as likely to throw us into the abyss at any moment as it is to welcome us into its warm embrace.
In Fin & Euba, love nearly immolates itself at the hands of she who would be loved as a letter containing a possible future symbolizes our irrational fear of success. In Clean, love has fettucine in its hair, and notices tiny things like an untied shoelace walking down the street for two hours. In The Gulf, love goes overboard amid a paroxysm of insults at the frustration of spiritual stagnation. And in Stuck, love is wonderfully awkward, eager to please, deliciously frantic, and ultimately...just...beautiful.
So dat blue tick hound gonna come, alright, but you gotta give him some treats. You gotta scratch his ear and rub his belly, 'cause every once in a while he gonna run oft after dat raccoon or possum or squirrel and you gotta be ready for that. Give dat hound a soft bed to lay in, scrub him off after he roll around in dat muddy crick...love him and he'll stand guard for you. He'll rest his head on your knee and look at you wit' dem knowing eyes, dem sad eyes. Dem eyes dat love you.
Read these plays...produce these plays...love...these...plays
You will live a better life!!!