In The Cuban Missile Tango, I am looking for a collision of two worlds. Currently I am writing outlines. I begin rehearsal in a month. The outline is only one or two pages but it provides a very important framework from which to build the play.
The Cuban Missile Crisis took the world dangerously close to World War III. Kennedy and Krushchev, with a little help from Castro, played a game of chicken with the lives of all on the planet. This crisis took place in 13 days in October of 1962. On Halloween day during the crisis a Soviet submarine came very close to launching a nuclear war head attacking US forces in the waters off Cuba. Three years earlier, on New Years’ day, 1959, a revolution led by Castro overthrew a dictatorship in Cuba, beginning a shift in the political climate in our hemisphere, and in some minds shifting the balance of communism on the globe, which ultimately led to the Cuban Missile Crises.
So there’s my collision – two holiday events, a New Year’s Eve party and a Halloween party colliding with a political military chess game. I have two social classes at the party, those having a luxurious meal and a kitchen staff. Two classes of people.
The tricky part is not to make it too obvious, too complex or too easy. I am not interested in creating a social political piece but would accept social political situations that may arise. I will begin as I did with my last movement work APIS, with exploring movement, dance and vaudeville. I have an idea of a noisy swinging kitchen door inspired by Jacques Tati’s Monsieur Hulot’s Holdiay. So with a big idea, the danger of World War III, I start with a couple of waiters and a swinging door.
I don’t want to tackle the entire crisis. That’s why I will begin with two waiters and a door. This is not the Cuban Missile Crisis, this is The Cuban Missile Tango – an entirely different event.
The Cuban Missile Tango opens Aug 21.