When you think of comic books and theater, you think of two similar, yet highly fractious groups of nerds and geeks, both totally into their own disciplines, with no patience or respect for the other, right? Okay, that may just be me. But imagined separation or not, the wall between the two has slowly been breaking down, from live comic book talk shows on both coasts, to a big budget Spider-Man musical, to, er, three other Spider-Man Musicals.
But the biggest theater/comics collabo is yet to come, as this Summer, the Brooklyn based theater company The Brick will present an entire Comic Book Theater Festival. To find out what the heck is going on, we chatted with Jeff Lewonczyk. The Brick’s head comic geek. Oh, and threw our own hat into the ring, while we were at it:
MTV Geek: Tell us a little about the comic book theater festival. First, how’d the idea come about?
Jeff Lewonczyk: Well, we’re all geeks at The Brick, and we also have a history of producing themed festivals, so in a sense it was inevitable. It all started on a lark with a The Hell Festival in 2004 – a tongue-in-cheek concatenation of infernal-themed shows – at which point we realized that a festival is a great way to cram as many artists into our small space during a single month as possible.
We’ve done summer festivals broad satirical themes (e.g., the Moral Values Festival, the Pretentious Festival, etc.), other annual festivals highlighting a specific genre or discipline within theater (the New York Clown Theatre Festival and Fight Fest, devoted to stage combat) – and, most recently, a performance series called Game Play, which presents shows based around video game themes.
This last one has proven to be a particular success, both as a reflection of The Brick’s unique pop-meets-profound chemistry and with the gaming community at large. There seems to be a hunger these days for work that explores roots or themes dear to geeks, and, since we love work like that, the circumstances just seemed fortuitous. Read More...