Capital Fringe: Tell-Tale

— by guest writer Carl Brandt Long —

A car crash survivor wakes up.  He has made a miraculous recovery – so miraculous that his wife is suspicious.  He finds he has a strange connection to his donor, and they seek her out to uncover the truth. 

Tell-Tale is about not being able putting things back together, but instead when we pick up the pieces, we make something new.  This is what playwright Hunter Styles has done in his writing of the script, and it’s what Grain of Sand has been finding layered within the play.

Click for tickets to Tell-Tale at Capital Fringe 2013

Grain of Sand Theatre enjoys finding freshness in classic stories (like when we re-framed Hamlet at the 2011 Fringe Festival).  When Hunter offered to write a play for us after seeing us do Raising Cane at Fringe last summer, we challenged him to write an original contemporary version of a classic story.

Hunter took Edgar Allan Poe’s The Tell-Tale Heart and shattered it.  He picked up the pieces — the atmosphere, the themes, and bits of the plot and characters, and put them together into something new.  You don’t have to know Poe’s story to enjoy Tell-Tale, but if you do, you’ll recognize some of it in our production.

In the play, multiple realities, perspectives, and spaces exist simultaneously. Each scene brings a shift in perspective, as a different character tells his or her tale.  The script is the theme.

by Hunter Styles
80 minutes
at Fort Fringe – Bedroom
612 L Street NW
Washington,DC 20001
Details and tickets
This immediately made me think of Picasso and the cubist movement at the dawn of the 20th century.  Cubists wanted to explore multiple perspectives at once, to collapse or expand space as they felt it, not as they saw it in the real world.  They took an object from several points of view, and put it back together into something new.

This was our jumping off point in rehearsal.  Once we could break the traditional rules of theatre space, we explored where else we could go.  We have phone conversations and walk about as if we were in the same room.  We appear and disappear as if we are a trick of the light.  We “lie” in bed, vertical against the back wall of the stage, while another of us sits on the edge of the bed.

Exploring the themes of Tell-Tale textually, visually, and physically has been a fun experience, and we’ve discovered things I’ve never seen before on stage.  We’re excited to share what we’ve found!

This production is a part of the 2013 Capital Fringe Festival, a program of the Washington, DC non-profit Capital Fringe.

Click for tickets to Tell-Tale

– Carl Brandt Long is a founder of Grain of Sand Theatre, and a DC director, actor, and fight choreographer. –
Part of Fringe Peeks, our “in their own words” series








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