How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe

I love this video because it shows a lot of the huge process that went into creating our adaptation (written by myself and Jennifer Fawcett) of Charles Yu’s science-fiction novel. The play had one live performer and 11 projection surfaces. We filled those screens (and the walls and the floor) with a ton of films that we shot over the two months before the play opened. As you can see in the video, it took a lot of planning, hustling, ingenuity, and ton of good friends to pull it off.

Skyscrapers of the Midwest

More than a year in the making, this genre-bending adaptation of Joshua Cotter’s critically-acclaimed graphic novel followed two young siblings through the joys and pain of their innocent, 1980s childhood in the heartland, complete with dinosaurs and giant robots. We combined layered animated videos with live-streamed action to stimulate the imagination of the young protagonist.

Down & Out in the Magic Kingdom

Julius is more than a century old. He lives and dies and lives again in a happy dystopia, when everyone is online all the time, the only wealth is respect, and modern technology has eliminated work, boredom, and death.

Only Cory Doctorow, renowned digital rights activist and coeditor of Boing Boing dot net, could see so clearly into the near-future. Luckily, he’s handed his visions down to us in the form of this outrageous and unpredictable playground of ideas.

This was a really challenging novel to adapt for a live performance. We created a language of gestures to convey a lot of the digital-mental events, and shot a few short films to use as flashbacks. All the backdrops were digital, too. We tried to make the whole show feel like an attraction at The Magic Kingdom.

And, wow! Look at those costumes. That was Michelle Dranschak’s work.