Looks just as good onstage as on paper...

Looks just as good onstage as on paper…

Welcome to our first spotlight interview with the braiiiiiiiiins behind Deathscribe 2014! For the next five weeks, we’ll be showcasing the writers and directors dedicated to delivering our newest crop of audio traumas on December 1st at the beautiful Mayne Stage Theatre. Today, we’re exploring the storybook existence of first-time Deathscribe Kevin Alves. Kevin is no stranger to things that go bump (or squish) in the night: in addition to being a regular in The Bruised Orange Theater Company‘s “I Saw You,” performing funny and ridiculous personal ads from in and around Chicago every Wednesday night at the Town Hall Pub and the first Monday of every month at Mary’s Attic, Kevin stars as Harold Bloodstone in The Factory Theater‘s Hotel Aphrodite, a farce set in a Sybaris-styled sex hotel opening November 14th. Kevin is going to talk to us today about stretching yourself artistically, motherly love, and What Scares Him.

How did you get into horror?

My first touch of horror was A Nightmare on Elm Street.  Freddy scared the shit out of me because the one time you should feel safe is while you’re sleeping.  He messed that up for me.

What excites you most about writing horror, compared to other genres?

My mom always said that I have a weird, sick mind (in a good, loving motherly way).  It’s nice to let some of the dark out, on occasion.

What was the hook for you in this story? What came first, the story or the sound?

It was a blend of the character and music.  I ran across an album called Waltz of the Monsters.  It’s an orchestral album with a lot of slow toy piano pieces.  Sounds like that creep me out and put my brain in a weird place.  The main character, Louis, is based on a character I did in a performance of “I Saw You”.  The personal ad was from a guy who just wanted “some body”.  He was very lonely and he felt very sad.  A mind set like that can make you do crazy things to feel loved and I wanted to explore that.

What do you consider the biggest challenge in writing for “radio,” compared to traditional theatre?

Remembering that you’re having to show action through sound only.  No “The room is decorated with this” or “Steve cringes in fear”.  You have to show everything through your words and the Foley.

I'm sorry, Monsieur Marceau, I know it hurts when we talk about you like you're not hear.

I’m sorry, Monsieur Marceau, I know it hurts when we talk about you like you’re not hear.

What discoveries have you made about storytelling during this process that you are excited to use in future projects?

Since this is one of the first things I’ve written since college, the fact that I am writing excites me for more in the future.

What sound would you most like to see/hear performed in a Deathscribe piece?

Someone expelling all of their internal organs and/or exploding.  Good luck with that one.

Do you have any advice for aspiring Deathscribes?

I almost wrote and submitted Louis for Deathscribe 2013, but I didn’t because, since I’m not a “writer”, I did not have the confidence.  This year, I gave myself the artistic goal to suck it up, stretch myself, and just do it.  I thought, “They’ll pick it or not pick it.  Either way, this is for me to see what I’ve got on the inside and to step into something outside of my realm.”  My advice would be if you’re interested in it, just do it.  Put yourself out there and something good may come out of it.  If not, at least you proved to yourself that you can do it.  Sometimes it works out in the end (case in point).

What scares you?

As a 39 year old man I am sad to say that the dark still scares the shit out of me.  If you can see what you’re fighting, you can possibly find a weakness.  If not, you’re just screwed.  In the dark, you’re always screwed.

What’s your favorite kind of snake?

The dead kind.  (I’ll be here all week).

Kevin’s here all week, but Deathscribe is One Night Only! Come check out Kevin’s “Louis,” directed by Shade Murray, at the beautiful Mayne Stage on Monday, December 1st!

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