Go behind the scenes of Philadelphia Theatre Company's latest world premiere

The BSR Podcast, season 8, episode 9: talking with playwright Roger Q. Mason about The Duat

1 minute read
Washed in blue light, X kneels onstage with a desperate expression, arms extended upward beseechingly.
Frank X in 'The Duat' at Philadelphia Theatre Company. (Photo by Mark Garvin.)

Playwright and interdisciplinary artist Roger Q. Mason (a "Black, Filipinx, plus-sized, gender non-conforming, queer artist of color"), a Los Angeles native, has been disrupting the status quo since toddlerhood. They tell Darnelle about what happened when their preschool teacher tried to make them take a nap, and how that led to where they are today.

Mason shares their experience developing this show with Philadelphia Theatre Company's new co-artistic director, Taibi Magar, how she approached the show like an editor, and why they think minimalistic design is much harder to pull off than maximalism. Go behind the scenes of this unusual memory play, in which FBI counterintelligence officer Cornelius Johnson reckons with his life in a liminal space drawn from a mythical Egyptian afterlife (featuring an extraordinary performance by Frank X).

Don't miss theater critic Kiran Pandey's review. This show runs through Sunday, June 23, 2024.

Listen above, visit the BSR Podcast episode page, or subscribe wherever you get your podcasts.

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