So…if you are anything like me, you will want to hear more from Jeff and Jacob Foy after today’s first listen of WFYL’s From Bullets To Broadway, Anatomy of A Broadway Show featuring Emergency, The Musical hosted by Air Force Veteran, Sgt. Daniel McCaughan. “Un-Block The Music” met this father /son team early on in their show process and in my blog writing career, and watching them grow is a truly enlightening experience. No matter how often we speak, I find out more! Without giving too much away about radio chapters to come, I had the guys, whose home base in Indiana, describe to me what it was like to come up with Emergency with no TRUE knowledge of New York theater!
“We truthfully had no idea what we were getting ourselves into,” said Jacob. The two went into the process not knowing “if (the project) was anything or just something fun we were going to do together,” Jeff added. That freshness and honesty truly comes through in the show (“Un-Block The Music,” you may recall saw the New York staging last summer.)
Emergency takes place in a hospital, and there are a lot of characters. The guys are not actors, but as they wrote, they also had to read the show line by line to make sure it was smooth. When I asked the question about the flow of the script, both Jeff and Jacob started laughing as they remembered how it went. “When we got our first draft, we read it, alternating lines. We had different inflections for each character. It was fun!” said Jeff. Jacob added, “I didn’t talk like a girl,” he laughed, “but we definitely had different voices.”
Without giving too much away about future chapters of Bullets To Broadway, the guys offered me an interesting tidbit. Emergency’s villain, Kyle, was not an original character in the show. It wasn’t until their dramaturge, Eric Webb, expressed his thoughts and said, perhaps they “needed something more” (a dramaturge is a literary adviser or editor in a theatre. You will learn more about what a dramaturge does and meet Eric in later episodes.) The character of Kyle was created outside the Broadway office of Davenport Theatricals, Jeff said.
The next few episodes of Bullets To Broadway will focus on how Jeff and Jacob’s first readings in Indiana went before meetings with Ken Davenport in New York. However, what has always struck “Un-Block The Music,” is how quickly this show came together. Writers agonize over projects before they ever let anyone hear it or see it. Writing is from the gut. “Un-Block’s” favorite quote about writing comes from sportswriter, Red Smith, “Writing is easy. You just open a vein and bleed.” The Foys, are fearless.
The first readings of Emergency took place at the Foy household with Jake’s high school friends. “High school kids don’t really believe you are serious about a project. They think, ‘Oh, good for you, you wrote a show.’” When Jacob finally asked his friends to be part of a reading, it was hard “because we knew that if it sucked, they would know.”
Obviously, it didn’t suck…and From Bullets to Broadway will talk about all of those steps that came before the writing duo even got to that first reading….So stay tuned!!! True stories are always way better than fiction!
From Bullets To Broadway, Anatomy of A Broadway Show is on AM 1180 WFYL Radio every Saturday at noon (NYC time), or you can listen LIVE on your digital device at www.BroadwayBullets.com.