Tag Archives: Laugh Track

They Laughed!

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A couple of weeks ago we invited a group of friends and theatre people over for dinner and to do a table reading of my script. I set up a microphone and recorded the reading. This past Saturday I was driving back to Pella from Des Moines in the remnants of a blizzard. It was slow going and I decided to pull up the recording and listen to the recorded reading for the first time.

At first, I listened carefully to the lines and obsessed about the nit-picky issues. There were the things that stuck out to me that needed to be cleaned up or fixed. There were a few inconsistencies that needed to be ironed out. But, then something happened as I drove slowly down highway 163 through the driving snow and listened. The honest reactions of my friends began to pique my interest. I was struck by the half-suppressed giggles of the readers who were hearing the script for the first time. The longer I listened, my heart was warmed in the midst of the cold snowstorm by hearing the loud guffaws in the comedic moments and the screams of dismay when the end of the first act left them in an unexpected cliffhanger.

Sometimes I think I’m crazy. I’m a business consultant in the middle of frickin’ Iowa writing a script about a small rural town. The Censor who lives in my head has regular field days with me…

  • “Who do you think you are?”
  • “Even if it is good. Nobody’ll read it.”
  • “You have no connections. Just stick it in the drawer and forget about it.”
  • “Who’s going to like a play about small town Iowa?”

Hearing the giggles, gasps and guffaws in the background of the recording, I smiled and not so politely told my Censor to be quiet. That was no laugh track on the recording. My friends actually laughed when they read it.

Maybe I’m not so crazy after all.