Thursday, June 3, 2010

Too Soon Festival Interview - Mateo Moreno of Happily After Tonight

By Byrne Harrison

Name: Mateo Moreno
Play: Happily After Tonight
Relationship to production: Playwright/Director, Actor
Website: Facebook Page

How long have you been involved in theatre?

Acting: I've been involved since high school. Directing: I directed by first play my senior year in high school. Writing: I wrote a short play in 2005, and this is my first feature length play.

What play had the biggest influence on your life?

Jonathan Larson is my continued inspiration. What he created in Rent has not only influenced my writing and inspired me, but has literally changed the way I view the world, opened my mind and my heart, and has touched me like no other show ever has.

What is your show about?

It's a modern day, fractured fairy tale that takes the classic stories of Sleeping Beauty, Red Riding Hood, Alice in Wonderland, and more, and tells what happened after their "happily ever afters."

What led you to write it?

I wrote it originally as a ten minute play for a friend of mine Eva Gil to perform in Chicago a few years ago. It never was produced and just sort of sat on my shelf. Then early this year, another friend of mine Bryan Enk told me I should make my own version of "Alice in Wonderland." Which got me to take this off the shelf and make it into a full length play. And I always had in mind the part I would like to play, so I'm very happy I was able to do that as well.

What inspired you to apply for the Too Soon Festival?

I've worked with The Brick Theatre several times, and during the recent extension of The Brick's own Craven Monkey and the Mountain of Fury, I began speaking to Festival director Hope Cartelli about the upcoming festival. She told me the title of it, and it just seemed like too good of a fit to pass up.

What's next for you after Too Soon?

Hopefully more staging of Happily After Tonight. I'd like to have it produced in other theatres and see what life it has. I'm also interested in producing a version of Romeo & Juliet that I adapted, as well as completing the filming of "falling..." a feature length romantic comedy that I wrote and am directing. I'd also like to stage an updated version of The Shadow Box.

And finally, if you could slow the world down and get two more hours out of every day, what would you do with them?

I'd use them to work more on the pre-production of Happily After Tonight! And MAN could I use two more hours a day... :)

Happily After Tonight
Written and directed by Mateo Moreno

60 minutes

Wed 6/9, 7pm
Sun 6/13, 8pm
Fri 6/18, 8:45pm
Tue 6/22, 7pm
Thu 6/24, 7pm

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