Online Performance - June 18,2020
by Maggie Kearnan and Taylor Buehler
directed by Elizabeth Ross
Sam, a young drama teacher at a Catholic high school is grappling with student/teacher boundaries in his new position, when personal tragedy brings his world to a halt, and he turns to his students and mentors to reassess and recover.
The performance will be followed by a talkback session with the Workshop Director and Playwrights. Your feedback is an important part of the FirstWorks process and we encourage you to stay and participate.
When I first read Changing Lanes I knew it was a very special script and its themes of identity, reaching out for human connection, and the difficult necessity of changing plans in the face of tragedy would be profoundly affecting for our audience. Little did I know how much more resonant the work would become during this world crisis.
FirstWorks isn’t like our other productions. We’re not just trying to put on the best show possible, the purpose of FirstWorks is to help our playwrights refine their play through the editing process and by receiving responses from our audience. We couldn’t let a beautiful play like Changing Lanes not be produced and it would be a disservice to our authors to not find some way to get them the feedback on their work they deserve.
We felt we could still produce this “staged reading" over Zoom, but how could we replicate the feeling of a live performance? Live theatre is special because of the unique experience of having people physically in a room together witnessing creation that is happening in real time. We worked really hard to create the same emotional intimacy over the internet. It has been a fascinating experience to work with this new format and to explore a new theatrical language.
In this time of social distancing, it has been such a privilege to be able to reach out and connect with other artists through this production. And now more than ever it is particularly valuable to actually speak with our audience and to work together to help our authors refine their play. So thank you for joining us. You’re literally helping our theatre community stay connected to work toward something positive.
Robert Thorpe II
FirstWorks Program Director
About the Company
Hannah Baker --she/her/hers--(Lori) has been seen in various PMRP productions, including three years of Santa Claus Conquers the Martians. She last worked with T@F as the stage manager of The Revenger's Tragedy. Hannah is a public defender who recently had her first experience in Zoom court; she is excited to make her debut on the Zoom stage.
Sarah Brinks --she/her/hers--(Patti) has recently appeared in Theater To Go's Congresswomen (Herald/6th Woman), T@F’s The Complete Works of William Shakespeare Abridged (Player), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Peter Quince), Mourning Becomes Electra (Mr. Borden/ Mr. Small), and Love’s Labour’s Lost (in Space) (Princess), Concord Players' Arcadia (Hannah), and Flat Earth Theater’s reading of He is Dead (Charles/Michael). Sarah thanks her endlessly supportive friends and family for their love and support.
Taylor Buehler--he/him/his--(Playwright) is a long-time barista, amateur banjo player, and forever dog lover. He earned a joint Bachelor’s Degree from Harvard College in 2014 in the Comparative Study of Religion and Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality. In 2017, he earned a Masters of Theological Studies in Studies of Women, Gender, Sexuality, and Religion from Harvard Divinity School. He currently works at Panorama Education as a Product Support Manager. Along with rock climbing, Spartan races, and spending time with family, Taylor finds time to act as an assistant director and dramaturg for high school theatre. Taylor lives in Medford with his dog Skutch (formerly known as Faber). Changing Lanes is his first full-length play. Maggie and Taylor have been friends since high school drama club and AP classes. They have been a directing team for high school theatre since 2016. Changing Lanes is their first complete collaborative writing project together.
Caroline Hubbard--she/her/hers--(Stephanie) was previously seen at T@F as Joby in Anton in Show Business and Castiza in The Revenger’s Tragedy. When she's not on the Zoom stage, she's studying education at Boston College while trying not to play too much Animal Crossing.
Andrea Humez--she/her/hers--(FirstWorks Program Director) has directed two previous FirstWorks productions, That Night in the Field (2015) and What They Think We Are (2019), as well as a variety of other T@F productions, including Arms & the Man (2007), The Rimers of Eldritch (2008), Bare Bones: Two For the Seesaw (2011), Stop Kiss (2016), and Burning (2019). Other directing credits include The Importance of Being Earnest (Arlington Friends of the Drama, 2013) and Spike Heels (The Occasional Players, 2009). She has appeared onstage with T@F in roles including Margaret Fuller in the 2006 and 2010 productions of The Margaret Ghost.
Maggie Kearnan--she/her/hers--(Playwright) is a local playwright, director, performer, designer, educator, and scenic painter. In recent seasons, she has painted and designed for many local companies and schools including Boston College, Company One, Boston Lyric Opera, Central Square Theatre, Also Known as Theater, and Boston Theater Company. Her 10-minute plays have appeared at the Boston Theater Marathon, Boston College’s New Voices series, the Firehouse Center for the Arts New Works Festival, and the Open Theater Project's Slam. Her full length play Idawalley was included in Fresh Ink’s Ink Spot Series in the fall of 2018 and will be produced at Boston College in February 2021. Maggie studied Theater Arts and English at Boston College, where she graduated in 2014, and is currently a member of the playwrights’ group Writers at Play. Maggie and Taylor have been friends since high school drama club and AP classes. They have been a directing team for high school theatre since 2016. Changing Lanes is their first complete collaborative writing project together.
Kris Kim--he/she/they--(Kate/Kaden) is a Boston based engineer and actor. They have most recently been seen on stage with Entropy Theatre, The Lilac Players, and Central Square Theatre's Catalyze Playwriting Group and are currently directing the audio drama Darkened Hallways with Hear Me Out Productions. This is her first play with T@F and he can’t be more excited!
John Olson--he/him/his--(Hunter/Luke) was part of T@F since the beginning and played many roles before wandering off a while ago. Highlights include old men (You Can't Take it With You, among others), princes (Much Ado About Nothing), priests (Murder in the Cathedral, The Lady's Not for Burning), a poet (The Margaret Ghost) and a pony (Equus). John thanks his husband Frankin for unwavering love & support.
Elizabeth Ross--she/her/hers--(Workshop Director) is privileged to direct a beautiful play like Changing Lanes. Recently she appeared at T@F as Lussurioso (The Revenger’s Tragedy) and Kaliope (She Kills Monsters). Her other work includes portraying Epigenes (The Congresswomen) with Theater to Go Inc. and Helena (A Midsummer Night's Dream) with Dream Role Players for whom she also directed Much Ado About Nothing.
Miles Taylor--he/him/his--(Sam) is appearing as a character named Sam for the second time at T@F, the first being in Burning (Spring 2019). Most recently he "starred" as makeup artist, hairstylist, and emotional support extraordinaire backstage for Anton in Show Business. During lockdown he's been spending his time baking, doting on his cat, and gushing over how much he loves the script of the staged reading you're about to see.
Robert Thorpe II--he/him/his--(Greg) is excited to be working with T@F again after his last appearance as the Great Mage Steve in She Kills Monsters. Next up, he'll be lending his voice to Hear Me Out Production’s original sci-fi audio drama Congratulations, Dear Stranger. He hopes that you enjoy the show!
FirstWorks is Theatre@First's workshop program for new plays. With this program we aim to engage with Boston-area playwrights and support new works. One full-length play is chosen for each session of FirstWorks. Playwrights have the opportunity to gain feedback on their work from experienced directors and actors during the revision process, followed by a staged reading with feedback from our enthusiastic and insightful audience.