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Diversionary Theatre Hosts World Premiere Of ‘A Kind Of Weather’

Playwright Sylvan Oswald wants to move ‘depictions of transness in playwriting forward’

Photo by Beth Accomando

Playwright Sylvan Oswald on the set of his new play "A Kind of Weather" at Diversionary Theatre.

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Diversionary Theatre sought out playwright Sylvan Oswald and just hosted the world premiere of his new play "A Kind of Weather" this past weekend.

Aired: February 10, 2020 | Transcript

Diversionary Theatre sought out playwright Sylvan Oswald and just hosted the world premiere of his new play "A Kind of Weather" this past weekend.

Imagine if your father turned up on your doorstep and asked to move in. That’s the catalyst that starts Sylvan Oswald’s "A Kind of Weather." Needless to say, this cramps the main character Kid's sex life and hampers the completion of his memoir about his gender transition — but gender transition plays no role in the story.

"That's exactly the point," Oswald said. "I am trans and I feel like it's time to move on from that. I want to move depictions of transness in playwriting forward by focusing on a chapter in a trans person's life that has nothing to do with his transition."

The play serves up a time-jumping narrative about complex characters that anyone can identify with.

"There's something that happens in the play where it's playing kind of fast and loose with time. It's really driven by memory in a sense and the way that our experiences get layered on top of each other. And so we might start in one up scene in one place, but go three different places within that whole scene," Oswald explained.

The play was inspired by a writing prompt of a found object, a datebook, and then the play was work-shopped.

"I think of [being work-shopped] as like getting a deep tissue massage in your brain," Oswald said. "For a writer anyway, because you have all these people who are getting inside your head, literally like getting inside your work and walking around inside it and then asking you questions like, 'You know, it's a little dim over here. Have you ever addressed this little dark corner?' And you're like, 'No.' And so they shed light on things you may have missed or may not have noticed. And I find it to be incredibly helpful."

"A Kind of Weather" continues through March 8 at Diversionary Theatre.

Listen to this story by Beth Accomando.

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Photo of Beth Accomando

Beth Accomando
Arts & Culture Reporter

opening quote marksclosing quote marksI cover arts and culture, from Comic-Con to opera, from pop entertainment to fine art, from zombies to Shakespeare. I am interested in going behind the scenes to explore the creative process; seeing how pop culture reflects social issues; and providing a context for art and entertainment.

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