The first play in "The Quaboag Trilogy", "A Funny Old Bird" celebrates the survival of character, family and neighborhood in the face of the conforming forces of contemporary American culture.
Five local residents—a paranoid logger, a one-armed mechanic, an evangelical cleaning lady, a 40 year old paperboy and a sexually obsessed nun—respond to the startling spectacle of a large man seen wearing a girl's orange rubber rain suit in the supermarket.
Two wise-cracking carpenters meet their fate on a ferryboat ride from a remote island off the coast of Maine when they inadvertently stumble upon a "How To" book publishing cult through the book one of them is reading to pass the time.
A coming of age quest of Raven, an island native from the coast of Maine, to free herself from the desperate boredom and superficiality of the postcard her life has become with her summer friends.
A beloved New England swamp is threatened by a real-estate developer from Poughkeepsie, NY, inspiring a new-found harmony in a local community through the resurrection of an ancient Indian myth.
The second play in a trilogy of the same title, "The Honor and Glory of Whaling" explores the evils of addiction in a New England Fishing town—think "The Perfect Storm" meets "Trainspotting".
A play about a younger brother's struggle to help his older brother fight his heroin addiction, with the younger brother cast in the role of a fisherman and the older brother cast in the role of a trout; a dramatic parable that explores the lessons to be learned from addiction about the bonds of brotherhood, wilderness, story-telling and integrity.
Mike Gorman is a playwright in residence at La MaMa Theater in New York City. He makes his home in New York and Maine. A list of Mike’s most recent productions at La MaMa include How and Why I Robbed My First Cheese-Store (2011), The Poet and the Lumberjack (2009), The Honor and Glory of Whaling (2008), Death by Joinery (2006), Counting Coup (2002), Single Action Shotgun (2001), UltraLight (2000) and A Funny Old Bird (1998).
Mike is currently working on If Colorado had an Ocean …, the final play in his trilogy of plays, The Honor and Glory of Whaling, that deals with the issue of Addiction and Recovery in the commercial fishing industry of New England. If Colorado had an Ocean … is scheduled for production in La MaMa’s First Floor Theater in December 2014, with all three plays from the trilogy to be performed in repertory.
Mike is the founder and Director of The Forty Hour Club—a resident company of La MaMa. The Forty Hour Club (“A Common Vision/A Common Vocation”) was originally formed for the purpose of producing a tour of “UltraLight”, the first play from The Honor and Glory of Whaling. UltraLight premiered at La MaMa’s First Floor Theater in 2000 before moving to The Gloucester Stage Company in Massachusetts in 2002. In September 2003 UltraLight toured Maine from The Portland Stage Company, to The Penobscot Theater in Bangor and The Grand Theater in Ellsworth. The production was co-sponsored by the Advocacy Community (Maine Alliance for Addiction Recovery) as well as the professional Theater and Arts Community. Mike is currently working on a film that documents the unique production history of The Honor and Glory of Whaling with filmmaker Ben Kahn of Nomad Pictures in Portland, Maine.
Mike was also the Co-Creator of The Fabulous Giggin’ Bros.—a performance troupe originated at Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts. He later spent several years on the Island of Vinalhaven, Maine developing the Giggin’ Bros. signature style of roots-based absurd theater before arriving in New York and debuting at La MaMa with their production of three short pieces: Biffing Mussels, Conversation Pieces and A Random Act of Violence. (“From Maine, land of Crustacean splendor and dweedy plaid-clad Caucasians, come The Fabulous Giggin’ Bros.”—James Hannaham, Village Voice.) Other Giggin’ Bros. plays and performance spectacles include Island Still Life, Goin’ West, Chores (Or The Big Man in the Orange Rubber Rain Suit), Interview, The Paradox of Professionalism and De-Freeze Walt Disney.
Mike began his playwriting career at Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts where he graduated with Honors and received a degree in Literature (1988). At Clark , Mike was nominated for The Rhodes Scholarship and received The Russ Granger Award as the University’s outstanding Scholar-Athlete. He has recently been nominated for induction into the Clark University Athletic Hall of Fame.
In addition to his plays and film projects, Mike is currently writing a book—American Shanachie: A Playwright’s Journey—that captures his experience as an independent theater artist.