The Internet’s greatest time-waster, Wikipedia, has become the inspiration for a new Off-Broadway show premiering at midtown Manhattan’s Ars Nova theater on August 3. The Wikipedia Plays, overseen by associate producer Kim Rosenstock, is a mini-marathon of short vignettes, each inspired by words from connecting Wiki entries.
“Our group of playwrights did a Wikipedia search together,” Rosenstock tells Radar. “We started with the “Defenestration of Prague.” because no one knew what the hell that was, and it seemed like a thing you would turn to Wikipedia to know. From there we clicked through keywords 17 times and each entry inspired a scene.”
The plays are based on entries as disparate as “troposphere,” “golf ball,” and “castration anxiety,” but Rosenstock hopes this will reflect the frantic, ADD nature of using the site: “You get sucked into the site for hours clicking on random links. We want to reflect that constant information stream.”
While Wikipedia—the company—is on board with the production and has given Ars Nova their official blessing, Rosenstock says the group has still encountered difficulty creating an online entry for their work. “It’s not as easy as just plopping your play onto the site,” she says. “We are still working on getting the Wikipedia Plays onto Wikipedia. It should happen any day now.”