Director and a 2011 Houston Press 100 CreativesJennifer Decker calls John Harvey's new play, Rome, "a black experimental comedy." Decker tells us that while the play was written by Harvey, who along with Decker is a co-founder of Mildred's Umbrella Theater Company, the show we'll see onstage during this production was a collaborative effort by Harvey, Decker, the actors and the design team.
|Photo by Gentle Bear Photography|
|Patricia Duran and Bobby Haworth as Fanny and Charles in Rome|
"I'm guiding the process but everybody had input," she tells us. "There's a strong sense of community around this project. I didn't come in with a definite plan on how I was going to do this. We just came together and we figured it out. The collaborative nature of it is the most fun thing.
"The freedom to create is the best thing for me. When something isn't working, [John's] very collaborative and willing to let us help him shape things. It's almost like I've gotten to help write the play, which is something that we used to do in the past. That's the original reason that I agreed to start a theater company."
Decker tells us that a director that isn't listening to suggestions from the cast and crew is missing out on tremendous insight and opportunities. "If you're directing, it just makes sense to listen to the cast and the design team. These are actors, designers that are walking around with this play, these characters, too. Somebody might see something that I don't; together we can see more, do more." More »