Hey, everyone! We’re trying an experiment with our Christmas letter this year. First of all, any time you see the text in Red, that’s Megan speaking. If the text is green, that’s from Ben. We’ll include the traditional synopsis of our year (and it’s a big year for us!), but if you want more of the details, we’d like to direct you to our brand sparkling new blog, Rhombusbomb. We’ll be updating that throughout the year as well, and if you, our beloved friends and family, pester us enough, we may even be able to keep it up all year! Right now, it’s got our Christmas letters and a little bit on wedding planning. You can find it at: https://rhombusbomb.wordpress.com/
Like I mentioned before, this year has been a big one for us. The big news, of course, is the upcoming wedding. We’ll be getting married on June 12th, which also happens to be my grandfather’s birthday. He has generously agreed to share the day with us, and in return we will have the ship fire a cannon in his honor. Ah, yes, the cannon. Our wedding will be on the USS Constellation, a tall ship anchored in the Baltimore Inner Harbor. We’re pretty stoked.
Career-wise, it’s been a crazy year for us both. I had the opportunity to work on several shows at Woolly Mammoth, including the ever-entertaining Fever/Dream, and the hugely successful Barack Stars, a group from Second City Chicago who was brought in and sold out nearly every single night of their four week run! We had a grueling 9 show week, but it was a great group to work with, and we got quite a lot of political attention (including visits from Sens. Durbin, Kerry, Specter, and Rahm Emanuel among others). With one day off, I went immediately into stage managing a fantastic production of Dracula with the immensely talented Synetic Theater. I’ll be stage managing Metamorphosis with them in the spring. I just can’t say enough wonderful things about Synetic. The people are fantastic, the art is intense, and it’s doing exactly the sort of work I trained for through college, finally.
As for me (Ben), acting’s not my entire life right now, like it was when I was on tour, but I’ve still had some good roles this year. Just look at this rave from the Washington Post in March: “Ben Kingsland manages to be both despicable and pathetic.” That’s press you can take to the bank! 🙂
I just started rehearsals for a new play about the USS Constellation— yes, the same warship-turned-museum where Megan and I are getting married in real life a few months later. Crazy! There’s always more info about my gigs at benkingsland.com.
As a playwright, I’ve been incredibly fortunate this year. I won my first contest in February, got my first grant in June, and got my first script published in September (and a second in October). All that, and a number of productions of my plays downtown, gives me a great feeling about momentum going into 2010.
Throughout the year, Ben and I have had the blessing of time to travel. By carefully watching our savings while we were working and some generous gifts from family members, we’ve been able to use the time between jobs to get some serious leisure time in.
In April, my family took us up to Boiling Springs, PA for the murder mystery weekend at Allenberry, where we won a costume contest together and I took 3rd place in solving the murders!
In June, Ben was working on a production of Oliver! in Charlottesville, VA while I worked on Fever/Dream. My show closed a week before his, so I drove down to join him at the beginning of July. While there, we took a tour of six of the local wineries.
August gave us a trip out to Denver, CO for Chappell & Rosalind’s lovely wedding, and September took us out to Phoenix, AZ for my Uncle Bob & Judie’s wedding. Both weddings were absolutely wonderful in very different settings, and we’re starting a lot of our own wedding planning from what we learned at each (i.e. we’d like to steal some ideas from both).
Thanksgiving was a tour around the area, with a dinner with Ben’s Mom on Wednesday, Thursday with my family at my aunt’s house, and Friday driving down to Asheville, NC to visit Ben’s Dad & stepmom in their gorgeous new house.
That’s the year in a nutshell! Going forward, we’re stoked about the marriage; we’re stoked about our new apartment; and we’re stoked about our jobs. We’re very optimistic about the new year coming up, and we look forward to staying in touch with you all through it.
Megan and Ben