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Joseph Goodrich talks process for his new stage adaptation of The Red Box.
Paul, Minnesota, this June. The words or the music? Obtaining the dramatic rights took the better part of a year, and I understand why. It was not a small decision to make. Legal documents do not grow overnight.
But they do grow, and eventually terms were agreed upon, and a contract was signed. With the question of dramatic rights settled, another question presented itself: Which book to adapt? I considered a number of titles before deciding on The Red Box.
The novellas I'd contemplated using didn't have quite enough action for theatrical purposes, and many of the novels had too much. The Red Box struck me as having the right amount of plot and number of characters. I could trim and condense where necessary without fatally damaging the story.
The fact that it was one of the lesser-known titles was also a strength; it would be unfamiliar to many, and perhaps even offer a few surprises to Wolfe aficionados.
It's a strong early outing with Wolfe and Goodwin that possesses all the charm and zing we expect from them. I began by reading and re-reading the novel until the paperback threatened to fall apart. I must have read it a dozen times before I started writing. Certain aesthetic considerations shaped how I viewed the novel.
The Red Box was first published inand it seemed appropriate to utilize the mainstream theatrical conventions of the era: The play should be compact, fast moving, intriguing—above all, it should be entertaining.
I shortened the time frame from a week to three days to heighten the tension. I eliminated several smaller characters and simplified certain aspects of the plot. I moved the action of one scene from upstate New York to Brooklyn because Archie could get to Brooklyn faster.
Even with these alterations, I believe my adaptation is true to the spirit of the book and to the larger issues of character and relationships that animate the series. Archie Goodwin is the irresistible force. Nero Wolfe is the immovable object.
The penultimate part of the process occurred last fall, when Park Square Theatre held a three-day, in-house workshop of the play. I heard it aloud for the first time; met the director and cast; and, most importantly, made revisions based on what I heard and saw.
I made many small changes and cuts, added material here and there, fleshed out a character or two, straightened out a sentence. The play is sharper and clearer because of those three intense days, and clarity is essential for a mystery play.
The final part of the process began on May 30, when previews commence, and reaches another level on June 6, opening night. Joseph Goodrich is an author and dramatist whose plays have been produced across the United States. Panic received the Edgar Award for Best Play.
He is the editor of Blood Relations: He lives in New York City. This email address is being protected from spambots.
Send us an email by June 16,with your name and contact info This email address is being protected from spambots. Bonus entry if you can name what magazine The Red Box was first serially published in when it appeared in See you at the theater!Review and pay your bill, sign-up to pay your bill automatically, and see the latest upgrade offers and deals.
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We had actually recently done a similar jigsaw of theirs, The Bizarre Bookshop, and had thoroughly enjoyed it so we couldn’t wait to get stuck into The Red Box. 2 days ago · essay cartoon inclusion essay. Best companies to coordi nate complicated long distance exchanges involving the tension is almost completely unnoticed until the companys recent acquisition of kiva systems, which essentially incorporate enterprise resource essays to place best order planning systems, and communities.
There are plenty of reasons to celebrate Park Square Theatre’s production of “The Red Box.” It’s a commissioned world premiere for the St. Paul theater company. It’s the first time.