The Furnace returns to the Hollow Earth Radio performance space tomorrow for Buffy Aakaash’s award-winning play “The Last Night at Manuela’s,” set in Mexico on the Day of the Dead. For this event, Buffy has adapted his ten-minute play from stage to radio and will be in the sound box orchestrating a panoply of effects as actors perform his work live.
What I love about the Furnace (as a previous performer and one of the organizers) is this focus on innovative storytelling and collaboration. Writers are encouraged to offer the audience an engaging experience by thinking of new ways to present their work. Here, Buffy will be entering new-old territory in the form of a radio play performed live. And, audience members in the performance space have the experience of hearing the play, seeing its production, and following along with the script in a professionally designed chapbook. Meanwhile, a larger community can tune in via hollowearth.org.
In August, I kicked off The Furnace by reading a short story riddled with footnotes. I invited my friend and fellow writer, Kristen Young, to be the voice of the footnotes. In the performance space, the lights were warm and so were the smiles. This was my first reading since graduating from the MFA at University of Washington, and it felt a little like a coming out party. Friends attended, but so did strangers, sitting right there with my story in their hands. Of course I was nervous, but I felt supported, in a cocoon of story-lovers. Just yesterday, I had the thrill of seeing my chapbook on display at Elliott Bay. My own stand-alone work, standing alone.
“The Last Night at Manuela’s” is beautifully written, funny, and magical. In June 2012, it was an award-winning entry in FUSION Theater Company’s annual short works festival in Albuquerque. We’re honored to receive support from the Seattle Office of Arts & Cultural Affairs to be able to present it at Hollow Earth, and we’re honored that it is featured in the Arts Crush festival. I can’t wait to see it come to life in performance, and I look forward to welcoming Buffy into the warmth of The Furnace, and seeing his sunny yellow chapbook next to mine. So put on your cozy autumn sweater, and help us welcome Fall with Buffy’s Seattle debut.
The Furnace Reading Series @Hollow Earth Radio
October 3, 6-7 pm
2018 E. Union Street