“Entertaining throughout ... brought the house down laughing ... Nina Leese [is] a very powerful actress and presence on stage.”

— Lance Evans, StageBuddy

“It was awesome! Witty and fun and thought provoking and surprising ... wonderfully performed ... Go see BUFFALO HEIGHTS!”

— Jessica Ammirati, Going to Tahiti Productions

“TIC has a talented ensemble cast ...
Shelley Little is a great comedienne ...
Joe Mullen is a dynamic presence!”

— Rori Nogee, Tracy’s New York Life

Stacks Image 729

Buffalo Heights

A play by Adam Harrell
Developed in collaboration with
Jake Lipman and Tongue in Cheek Theater Productions

Premiere performances:
May 7-17, 2014

A new comedy about sex, smokes, and school politics.

Devising workshop with The TEAM

Over the weekend, I attended a one-day workshop on devising theater like The TEAM.

From their website, "The TEAM is a Brooklyn-based ensemble dedicated to creating new work about the experience of living in America today."

I know artistic director Rachel Chavkin a tiny bit from our both being in the Women's Project Lab in 2010, and she's tremendous.  She's won two Obies and been nominated for a Drama Desk award as a director.  She recently directed (outside of The TEAM) the pop opera Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812.  She also led the workshop I attended.

The workshop, Devising Within a Democracy, had 18 participants.  We had a small amount of advance work to do, coming to the session with some inspiration (an article and an icon).  From there, Chavkin walked us through The TEAM's process and gave us prompts on ways to explore the theatricality of the inspiration we brought in.   We broke into groups at one point and some worked physically (movement-based etudes) and some of us wrote (scripted etudes).   We then presented our etudes to the wider group and talked about each one, and could see in a short span of time how various useful chunks of a piece could emerge for further development.

For my money (and the class was very affordable -- $100 for a four-hour session), this workshop was a practical and fun mix of things to think about and ways to implement the creation of new theater.  The best part, however, was Rachel's candor about how things have worked (and, even more illuminating, when and why things have not worked) in The TEAM's ten years.

One last note: a documentary filmmaker followed The TEAM during the making of a show, Mission Drift, and that film, "The TEAM makes a play" will be screened on Thursday, June 26 at 7:30 pm at the Pershing Square Signature Center, 480 West 42nd Street.  Tickets are available on

Twitter @tictheater

Connect with TIC