What happens when you’ve graduated from the Columbia theater scene and can no longer book space in Lerner to put on plays? For Brian LaPerche (CC ’12), Cody Holiday Haefner (CC ’12), and Alison Goldberg (BC ’12), the next logical step is the NYC Fringe Festival. Bwog sat down with the playwright (Brian), director (Cody), and producer (Alison) of The Connected: Bundle #1, a play exploring “how technology binds us to one another worlds apart and separates us when we stand face to face to talk about real world deadlines.”
Bwog: What drew you to the project?
Cody: I read Brian’s play and thought this was actually a really good play. So I told him he had to submit this to Fringe. He was a little resistant, but I was like, “No, you’re submitting this.” Because I thought it should be done.
Alison: I found out after it was accepted into the Fringe festival and jumped aboard.
Bwog: What is this play about?
Brian: Henry, the main character, finds pictures of a young factory worker on his new smart phone and tries to find a way to contact this factory worker while dealing with his brother, who is the CEO of the technology corporation who makes the phones, and his girlfriend, who is protesting that company for their labor practices.
Bwog: Is this for a specific audience?
Brian: It’s definitely for people that use the technology of the 21st century, which seems to mainly target younger people. But it appeals to an older crowd as well because the play asks, “How have these phones and tablets changed the way we communicate?”
Bwog: What do you wish Columbia had better prepared you for?
Cody: Everyone has more conflicts. So I wish I knew the secret to scheduling. I figured it would be easier.
Alison: Why did I think that too!
Brian: I found editing scripts for a rehearsal process is a lot like having a paper due. So deadlines are like actually real life things.
Bwog: Were any of the parts written for specific people? Brian: Even though the almost the entire cast is Columbia students or alums, none were initially [written for specific people], but as rehearsals went along, I started to fit things to their voices.