Jaki Bradley here, I’m a Pipeline ensemble member and a director — if you’ve been to a Pipeline show in the last few years, you might have seen me pacing nervously in the back or running backstage to give an actor a prop.
I have been lucky enough to direct for Pipeline several times in the last few years, and this year am honored to be directing Playing Hot for Pipeline’s 10th anniversary season.
Playing Hot centers on Buddy Bolden, a day laborer in the early 1900s who pioneered America’s art form, jazz. The show tells the story of his incredible rise and fall, and transports us to an evening in New Orleans. It also tries to tell Buddy’s story in the style of the music he made, riffing on the structure of a play the way Buddy riffed on the notes on the page.
The show is about history, legacy and the nature of invention. It’s also about making art and how race, class and history are intrinsically embedded in which stories we know and why. It’s also a dance party. With a live brass band.
If you didn’t catch my drift, this show is A LOT of things, and it flat-out wouldn’t exist without Pipeline. They have supported and nurtured it since it was just an idea, and at every step of the way, they’ve let us dream big and tell exactly the story we want to.
You’ve probably heard many times that Pipeline makes the impossible possible – and that’s absolutely true – but I want to drill down into how they do that. Because it isn’t just about their taste or their enthusiasm; it’s about the insane work ethic, skill, and resourcefulness they put into their shows. It’s because they work relentlessly hard to make the kind of art they believe in.
There’s no one I trust more with my work, and no one I believe deserves your support more.
So join me in pledging your support to Pipeline. With a company this enterprising, every little amount helps (but don’t be shy, big amounts help too!).
Thanks for your time, and come share some gumbo with us this spring!
Bottom Photo by Marcus Middleton