The Velociraptor's Very Good Day
Sarah "Sair" Kaufman and Shane Dittmar
When an impossible-to-predict tragedy strikes, it’s up to Velociraptor to embrace who they really are and make a discovery that will change the world forever. Originally written for Prospect Theater Company’s Musical Theater Lab, this show explores Autistic joy and the history of an Earth-shaking food.
Sair and Shane (They & Them) are a disabled, nonbinary writing team with ambition to broaden the accessibility of musical theatre to be more inclusive of the disabled community. They & Them were finalists in the 2022 Write Out Loud songwriting competition, and recipients of the 2022 Danny Award for Original Song. The 10-Minute Musical they wrote for the Prospect Musical Theatre Lab – The Velociraptor’s Very Good Day, a piece about dinosaurs and autistic joy – was also selected for the 2023 SoundBites X Festival by Theatre Now New York. They are both a part of the BMI Musical Theatre Writer’s Workshop. Their flagship project is a D&D-inspired fantasy musical podcast called The Reality Shaper (therealityshaper.com) that they are currently developing. A song from the project called “The Non-Binary Song” went viral, and the pilot episode of the podcast is available on your podcast app of choice!
A BIT ABOUT THE PLAYWRIGHT
1. When did you start writing plays? If you had a moment where you realized you wanted to write, what was it?
We’ve each been writing musicals for years, and we started writing together when we were both independently selected for Roundabout Theatre Company’s Reverb Festival and realized we shared a passion for creating work that was inclusive of and accessible to the Disabled community.
2. How did you come to write your OOB play? Was there a particular inspiration behind its creation? How has it developed?
Our piece was developed for the Prospect Musical Theatre Lab 2022, inspired by a photograph and by Sair’s experiences as an Autistic person. It was also produced for the SoundBites X Festival in 2023.
3. What are 5 words that describe who you are as a playwright?
Irreverently disabled, amusingly queer, pretty-good-at-writing-but-too-insecure-to-sincerely-compliment-ourselves-thus-this-extended-joke-with-hyphens.
4. What/who are some of the major influences on your writing?
Jason Robert Brown, The Mountain Goats, and we both just closed a production of Into the Woods so… that too.
5. What’s one fact someone would never guess about you?
Velociraptors had feathers! (Bonus Fact: Hyperfixation is the immense focus on one person, activity or object and excluding or ignoring everything else.)
6. What are some of your favorite plays?
Fat Ham, Cost of Living, Cats (2019).
7. Any new projects you’re working on or shameless plugs?
Our flagship project currently is The Reality Shaper, a queer, fantasy, D&D-inspired epic podcast musical, the pilot of which is available at therealityshaper.com. We’re also working on a commissioned TYA show for EPIC Players and both members of the BMI Musical Theater Writers Workshop.