I write quite a few plays. Most are pretty short, ten minutes or so. So I keep my eyes open for places wanting short plays. Last year I saw a notice for one in Canada and they had a rule that (if you weren't Canadian) you had to have one of the characters say “I see a rabbit”.
Well I let that sort of percolate in my brain. And somewhere back in the dusty file cabinets of my mind an image came up. Like an old Ripley's Believe It Or Not, it seemed to have something about some cultures saw a rabbit on the moon instead of the man on the moon. Well off to the Internet I went and did a search on moon and rabbit. And just like my dusty cobwebbed memory had said, some cultures do see a rabbit on the moon.
So delving into Wikipedia I read up on some of the myths that arose to explain why there was a rabbit on the moon. And two of the stories were remarkably similar. And they were from separate continents. There was an old Aztec tale about the god Quetzalcoatl and a Buddhist tale about Sakra, a Buddhist “god”. Both tales involved the god traveling and being hungry and the rabbit sacrificing itself so the god could eat. And in return the god put the rabbit's image on the moon.
So now I had an image that I wanted to use for my play and after a short time I knew what I was going to do and the play wrote itself quickly. I was able to have a reading of the play at Fiddler's Crossing Open Mic Night a week or two before the deadline to submit the play. With Debbie Martin and Cambria Hynes doing the two parts the play was well received. Though I did notice something that I felt needed fixed, did a very minor rewrite and sent it off to Canada.
Well, to make a long story short, it wasn't picked for their festival, but that wasn't the end of my little play. For some time now Gary Mazzola and I have been collaborating on some projects and he decided that he wanted to make a film of my play. And with the help of some of the actors with Tehachapi Community Theatre the film “moon rabbit” has been completed. The video is available on YouTube. Either go to YouTube and search on “moon rabbit mazzola” or type in the link
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ctg3KUdq95I. I think the resulting film turned out wonderfully.
So go and watch the film and see where my inspiration that came from a dusty old memory took me. But I can't sit back and rest on my laurels. I need to get back to writing. The deadline for our own TCT festival is coming up and I need to get something written for it. I wonder what dusty old memory I can find for that. (If you think you might have a ten minute play to share, go to http://tctonstage.com/playwrightsfestival.html and consider submitting for the festival next spring.)