Let me paint a bit of a picture for you
It was October 2006. My daughter had just been born. Laura was doing course work for her Phd. I had just returned from a second call back in New York for the Blue Man Group. They said thank you, but no. Though happy about being a dad, I was feeling gutted from the rejection. 10 months of drum lessons for what?
Meanwhile, life went on. I was sitting in a hotel room in Sarnia Ontario, getting ready to showcase Little Big Frog for Faustwork Mask Theatre at Ontario Contact. I knew I had to earn money to support my family. I had to earn more money than I could performing Rob’s show. I had to be sensible. I had to get a job.
Instead I, made a play
I had been performing in schools for quite a while. With hundreds of shows across Canada since 1995 I knew the earning potential. I’m not an actors union member so I wouldn’t have to share my earnings with a stage manager. I just needed a show that would sell.
That was my tragic flaw
Though I needed a show that would sell, I wanted more than anything to create that one special show. The show I could be proud of. The show that I could perform and love as much at seventy years old as I did the moment I built it. My ‘Morgan’s Journey’. My mic stand routine. A place for my spirit to shine. I had that show brewing up inside of me for a while. I had a that I had to make. I had a story I had to tell. This story became Loki’s Big Dream. Watch the video below to find out more.
I worked with the experts
Kids. I spent two years improvising, workshopping and tweaking Loki’s Big Dream in front of audiences. Over the course of sixty performances, ‘Loki’ took shape. It’s a clown show about love and death that I’ve been trying to sell to elementary schools. Some teachers love the poetry, the beauty and sophistication of Loki’s Big Dream. Others are quite uncomfortable when the ten year olds ask them questions about death and dying. Many want a show that explicitly links to curriculum. A performance that is didactic and tied to outcomes in clear ways. The kind of “hey kids don’t bully each other” crap that make me want to do terrible things to the anti bullying organizations mascot… Loki’s Big Dream isn’t that kind of show
This all happened by mistake
Loki’s Big Dream was originally meant to be a simple school show. I set out to make a show for young audiences that adults would tolerate. What I ended up with is a show for grown ups that children can enjoy. It crosses generations in it’s appeal. It’s deceptive in how it unfolds. It’s impact is akin to that of Life is Beautiful or Big Fish. Seemingly benign at first – amusing perhaps, then wham! It hits you.
So Halifax friends, come see Loki’s Big Dream at the Atlantic Fringe Festival this summer. And leave with your heart a little warmer and a sparkle in your eyes.