Brian McLane

Media and Social Commentary

Brian McLane header image 1

ALL WORK AND NO PLAY? IT’S EUROPA THE MUSICAL

September 5th, 2009 · No Comments · Social Commentary

In the Spring of 2006, a little technology company by the name of iProgram, and headed up by Brian McLane was in its infancy. At that time, iProgram was making a name for itself as being one of, if not the only, companies to be able to stream live media to cell phones. This is still the case.

Europa Artwork by Tom Grindberg

Europa Artwork by Tom Grindberg


To demonstrate this capability to folks out in Los Angeles, a test was needed. It was decided that a full length concert would be of great interest to viewers not in New York. Originally the test was scheduled to take place at CBGB but it was too dark, and would be too loud. This was pre-iPhone and the person watching on their handset would see very little and hear pretty much only noise.

So it was decided that a play would be much more suitable for the test. Brian was walking around at a flea market and was rummaging through some old paperbacks and came upon Tennessee Williams’ “BABY DOLL”. However, despite the fact that the story was drastically altered, set in space, and infused with a musical score, it was not to be. The lawyers for the University of the South were unreasonable to say the least.

At about the same time, Brian was having his shoulder operated on and was on heavy pain meds. When it hit him. He’d write his own play. He had all this great music and what the heck? Over the course of 3 nights, in a Percasett and with one arm in a sling, Brian dictated Europa to his mom in Boynton Beach. It was rough, but after working with composer Dave Penn on background themes it was ready to be cast.

The original version of Europa was staged and streamed to handsets the last two weekends of April in 2006. You can see the video if you go to http://www.myspace.com/brianmclanemusic and click on the VIDEOS section under Brian’s profile picture.
It was performed at The Collective Unconscious in Tribeca. The cast was terrific with notable performances turned in by Christopher Robert Smith and Jason Pintar. As luck would have it, the Mixed Media artist Daniel Green (Mikon Hall of Worlds) had a Science Fiction themed installation in the Theater at the same time as the production so it was decided to leave the installation on stage – which doubled as the set. Additionally, the video guerilla Donald O’Finn (Rev 99), leant a hand by allowing some of his repurposed video mash-ups to be used.

Now – 3 years later and after much inquiry, the story has been updated, new music from the Rock Band Hagatha included and a score by Rob Susman. There are plans to shoot the work in a green-screen environment in the Summer of 2009.

HAGATHA was a big part of New York’s underground music scene in the late 1980’s and early 90’s. They played regularly in CBGB’s, Limelight, The World, and the Pyramid Club
Musicians who helped write the songs you hear in Europa include:
Clark Render (VOX), Brian McLane (GTR), Rob Susman (KEYS), Kate Shellenbach (Drums), Yianni Naslas (BASS), Lloyd Goldberg (SAX), Alex Antonakos (GTR), Miles Green (BASS), Bill Brookins (BASS), Diana White (GTR), and Chal (GTR).

Brian McLane is a writer and blogs and Brianmclane.com

Tags:

No Comments so far ↓

There are no comments yet...Kick things off by filling out the form below.

Leave a Comment