The State of the Conduit: Year 2

Kevin Kemarly as Collin Carlyle, a haunting presence at the Alerus Convention Center during Midnight Masquerade on New Year's Eve. 

Kevin Kemarly as Collin Carlyle, a haunting presence at the Alerus Convention Center during Midnight Masquerade on New Year's Eve. 

Happy Birthday to Conduit Theatre!

Another year has passed with Conduit Theatre.   Year 2 marked a year of changes, growth, new experiences, and ended with a bang as we rang in 2017 the way we started 2016, with the Greater Grand Forks Young Professionals, this time at the Alerus Convention Center, with Midnight Masquerade, an interactive murder mystery, trying to solve a 15 year old murder.   The guests included members of the mafia, government officials, corporate figureheads, and members of the entertainment industry, and everyone was a suspect as the night progressed and clues were given to solve the mystery.   

The evening also was a charity event, with 5 nominated nonprofits competing for the proceeds from the night, which included charitable gaming, complimentary hor d'oeuvres, and music provided by Blu Light Productions.  

It was a fun evening, and the attendants came wearing their best masks for the masquerade, because masks make murder more fun, right?   

Becca Cruger and Aubrey Schulz-Barney of the Greater Grand Forks Young Professionals drawing for prizes at Midnight Masquerade.  

Becca Cruger and Aubrey Schulz-Barney of the Greater Grand Forks Young Professionals drawing for prizes at Midnight Masquerade.  

Top 5 Moments of 2016

5.  Being hired to promote the Greater Grand Forks Symphony and Orchestra.   I directed a number of couples in appearances across Grand Forks.   They would freeze in poses until tango music played, which brought them to life to tango for anyone passing by.   This brought creative attention to the final concert of the symphony's season, which featured Argentinian tango music.

4.  Performing as a living statue at a number of events around Grand Forks, whether it was Grand Forks Pride, or at the Holiday sale for Muddy Waters Clay Center, it is always a bit fun adding a little bit of magic and entertainment to any event.   Seeing some folks surprised to find out I'm a living person, or scaring someone, it always is a fun endeavor.

3.  Beginning work on a new solo work.   Tentatively called, "The Mystery", it is a ghost story, a haunting case told by a detective at the end of his career.   I hope to premiere it in 2017, so look out for it!

2.  Remounting "Origami Swans" at The Ember Coffee House, as well as premiering my 45 minute pitch, "The Healing Power of Telling Your Story", where I relate my own personal story with addiction, and how telling my story has been a major factor in my ability to connect and help other people.   It was a powerful experience, which led to a number of audience members staying afterwards to share their own stories around addiction and abuse.   It is always a powerful experience to be a receiver of these stories, and I am always grateful when people trust me enough to share deeply personal events.

1.  Closing out the year with the Young Professionals, with another interactive murder mystery.   In an immersive, interactive style that I'm beginning to label Social Theatre, it was more ambitious than the first year (more interactive, more difficult, with a larger audience to integrate into the evening), and definitely was filled with twists and turns of epic proportions.   It was also a good way to close one chapter... which leads me to my next point....

What's Next in 2017?

As of January 2nd, I am now a resident of the Twin Cities!  Specifically, St. Paul, Minnesota.   In an effort to continue explore and expand the services of Conduit Theatre, I made the move to this lovely new city.   2017 may be more of a settling in year.   I want to premiere my new solo show, but beyond that, I may be more focused on establishing myself in the city.   I may try to jump in with some other companies, network, but most importantly, just settling myself in with a new day job, a new apartment, and making new friends, visiting with old friends who live in the city, and seeing where life takes me.   

This doesn't mean I will say goodbye to Grand Forks, however.   In fact, on January 21st, I'll be back with the Rent Poet, Brian Sonia-Wallace, at the University Park warming house for the Koselig Spoken Word night.  

 

Stay tuned for all the projects as they come!  And thank you for your support!