Their fate... Your hands... Roll the DIE.
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"I have to say that “DIE: Roll to Proceed” really was a play to die for...."
-Bradley Laborman TV
"A Choose Your Own (Hilarious) Adventure.... DIE: Roll to Proceed is the show to see in NYC!"
-Amanda Mactas, Joonbug Magazine
"Gives new meaning to 'Roll' play... Bring your ID and leave your inhibitions at home..."
-Frank Scheck, New York Post

"Expect the unexpected..."
- Doug Strassler, New York Press
"The thrill of live theatre is that anything can happen on a given night, and that concept is pushed to the extreme by Die: Roll to Proceed"
-TDF Stages: A Theater Magazine
Choose Your Own (Hilarious) Adventure
See the show where YOU choose the outcome!
By Amanda Mactas

DIE: Roll to Proceed is the show to see in NYC. Presented by Ashley C. Williams (aka the Human Centipede) and Mind the Art Entertainment, this comedy adventure allows the audience to choose the direction of the story. The audience will roll a die at pivotal moments in the show to determine the outcome. There are 72 different versions, guaranteeing that no two performances are the same!

This crazy cool show will run until October 19th every Friday at 10:30pm at The Red Room. The story follows George, who following an argument with his girlfriend Kate, decides to revoke his right to choose the paths his life will take. Instead of making decisions, he leaves his fate to dice. George and his roommate Rob then embark on a comical, strange, and totally unpredictable (you got that right!) journey. Their fate... Your hands... Roll the DIE

Author and star of the show, Joe Kurtz, brings the audience a, literally, laugh out loud comedy. Kurtz and fellow cast member Justin Anselmi perfectly complement one another with their back-and-forth comedic banter. Not only do they play best friends and roommates, but they give the impression that they are best friends in real life, as well. Perhaps it's the chemistry they exhibit during a wedding (sorry, can't tell ya whose...oh, and you might not even see that version anyways), but the actors are well cast and work well together. Robb Moreira as the oh-so-lovely Grizz is hilarious and plays a manly woman quite well...maybe cause, well, he is a man. And we can't leave out David Williams, who plays the amusingly awkward MC of the show, and who probably made me laugh the hardest.

Now if you are wondering what would have happened if you were to roll a 3 instead of a 5, no need to panic. The book is available for purchase (complete with die!) for $12 here or at the show.

$15 tickets to the show are available here...and we suggest you get some asap.
Gives new meaning to ‘Roll’ play
By FRANK SCHECK

So many plays seem arbitrary, as if the writer were rolling dice to decide what happens next. But “Die: Roll To Proceed” cuts out the middle-man.In Joe Kurtz’s endlessly variable, interactive comedy, the next move is up to theatergoers.

Playing at 10:30 Fridays at the East Village’s funky Red Room, “Die” revolves around roommates George and the gastrically challenged Rob, who spend most of their time playing Risk. One particularly stressful day, George, declaring that “I want God to decide everything for me,” decides to avoid all responsibility by rolling dice to determine his life choices, beginning with whether or not he should stay with his girlfriend, Kate.

And that’s where you come in. At every pivotal plot point, volunteers are enlisted to roll a large foam, six-sided die to dictate what direction the show takes next, including whether George and Rob will kiss.

It’s not a power to be taken lightly, since there are 72 different scripted versions of the play. But you don’t have to take the producers’ word for it: A paperback novelization ($12 at the theater, $15 elsewhere) details each and every one of them.
The silly plot is negligible — at the show I saw, George (Kurtz, the playwright) becomes a male prostitute, with his grotesque landlady as one of his clients. Adding to the low-rent vibe is a ramshackle set featuring a large air mattress, its inflation and deflation bookending the proceedings, with cardboard cutouts (“Laptop,” “Noose,” “Crack Pipe”) functioning as props.

Keeping things loose are emcee David Williams, with his deadpan asides — and the free preshow beers. Bring your ID and leave your inhibitions at home.
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A play to "DIE" for!!!
By Bradley Laborman

​One of my favorite parts of living in the neighborhood that I do, is the amount of incredible theatre and art I have contact with. This was especially true on Friday night when I got the chance to go to the play “DIE: Roll to Proceed”.

“DIE” is a play where the fate and the plot is determined by audience interaction. It all starts when George (this night played by Joe Kurtz) has a fight with his girlfriend Kate (played this night by Amanda Kay Schill) on game night with his roommate Rob (played by Justin Anselmi). After she leaves in a huff, George decides that maybe it’s time to take the pressure of decision-making off of him and place it in the hands of a little plastic cube of fate. From this point on, George will assign answers to all his problems to numbers on a dice. Yes and No questions will be solved with ODD and EVEN rolls of the die. With this new method in place, George begins his new decision free life with one roll.

At the point of the roll, all action on stage comes to a halt. The Master of Ceremonies (this evening played by David Williams) steps out and asks for a volunteer from the audience to roll an oversized die. This roll determines what action will happen net in show.

Without ruining anything that happens in the show, I can say that rolls of the dice occur three times though the show. Each roll taking the show in a different direction. According to the program there are 72 different ways the plot can roll, and after watching this play once I am determined to go back and see a different version of the action.

The cast I saw was incredible. Joe Kurtz as George brought not only a great energy to the stage, but I could really feel his frustration with life and his determination to just give up. From his anxious beginnings to his careless and reckless transformation, Kurtz was likable and great to watch on stage. He was a great compliment to Justin Anselmi, who starts out as his carefree roommate Rob and slowly mirrors George’s transformation by becoming more stressed and erratic as the dice rolling continues.

Then you add Amanda Kay Schill as the angry girlfriend Kate and Robert Moreira as the horny Hispanic landlady and the play just continues to provide so many chances to laugh. Schill proved to be a great voice of reason as Kurt and Anselmi’s characters dipped farther and farther into the power of the dice. While Moreira had me almost falling out of my chair as the crazy landlady who has been forcing them deeper and deeper into the craziness and confusion.

Not to be missed of course was David Williams, who served not only as a liaison between the characters and the audience, but also was another person who I found laughing at several times during his brief appearances on stage.

I want to congratulate Joe Kurtz not only for his work on stage by also on writing a very incredible play. Props go also to Christian De Gre on the direction. The way the characters were moving all over the stage at times, one might forget that someone is telling them how and where to run around. I also want to say a special thank you to Ashley C. Williams for not only producing this production but also bringing it to my attention. I really have to say that “DIE: Roll to Proceed” really was a play to die for.

If you are in the East Village or just love a great show, then I recommend you take in this show. Here is all the info you need to know!

Tickets are $15 and the show opens this Friday, April 6th and will run until October 19th every Friday at 10:30pm at The Red Room located at 85 East 4th Street.

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Die: Roll to Proceed  has been  featured in:
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A Play That Changes with the Roll of the “DIE”
By Doug Strassler

New York night owls know to head downtown to throw caution to the wind and see where the night takes them. Well now a small ongoing show has given them yet another chance to expect the unexpected.

Joe Kurtz, the writer and a star of DIE: Roll to Proceed, playing Friday nights at The Red Room, presents a situation that could end up in myriad different ways. Seventy-two, if you want to be precise. George (Joe Kurtz) and Rob (Justin Anselmi) are roommates undergoing a particularly stressful day that includes an ultimatum thrown by George’s girlfriend Kate (Amanda Kay Schill). Finally, George reaches his breaking point, declaring that “I want God to decide everything for me.”

Well, David Williams (as acting emcee) then deifies his audience, allowing them to predict George and Rob’s future by rolling a die at three distinct points over the course of this 75-minute show, presented by Ashley C. Williams (perhaps better known as “the Human Centipede”) and Mind the Art Entertainment. A volunteer steps up (well, given the Red Room set-up, down) to roll a big foam die. Each of the six numbers portends a different outcome for DIE’s plot to continue along, answering such questions as whether George should propose to Kate and how they should address their delinquent rent. Christina De Gre’s smooth direction keeps the pace from sagging after each crossroads.



This is lowbrow stuff (one option includes male prostitution), to be sure, but the actors work harder than the material might lead you to believe. Anselmi and Kurtz seem game for absolutely anything, and very adroitly go with the flow of the die. The two of them work well off of each other, and seem to be having a lot of fun. Schill didn’t have quite as much to do, at least given the way the die spun on the night that I saw her, but she mimicked outrage offense with ease. Robert Moreira channels his inner Divine in a cross-dressing role as the hedonistic landlady Grizz. The droll Williams also earns a lot of laughs – yes, earns – with his antisocial banter among the audience and volunteers.



In truth, it probably takes multiple visits to the Red Room to see what DIE is really capable of, and to see which, if any, situations repeat and how the other scenarios might challenge the cast or offer them new opportunities to show off their skills. (And for those really hungry to find out all possible paths for the show to take, a book listing all of these scenarios is for sale at the theater.) Is the show high art? Nah. Does it make for diverting night out pre- or post-drinks? You’ll have to roll the die yourself to find out.
Choose-Your-Own-Adventure Theatre
“Die” Relies on Fate to Tell a Story
By TDF Stages

The thrill of live theatre is that anything can happen on a given night, and that concept is pushed to the extreme by Die: Roll to Proceed, a comedy running on Friday nights at the East Village’s Red Room.

Written by Joe Kurtz and developed and directed by Christian De Gré, Die follows a man named George during an event-filled night when he decides to abandon free will and put his fate in the hands of a six-sided die.

What George is actually doing, though, is placing his fate in the hands of the audience. At three pivotal moments, an emcee invites a volunteer to step down to the front of the stage and roll the die. Each number corresponds to a distinctly different path that the rest of the show can take.

The show stems from the mission Mind the Art Entertainment, De Gré’s company, to keep the audience engaged. “In an age where digital media is the main source of entertainment, forcing people to attend an event and truly enjoy its impact is one of our primary goals to keep the live performing arts relevant and alive,” he says.

Staging a choose-your-own-adventure story has been uniquely rigorous. Though Die resembles improvisational comedy, where performers change a scene with spur-of-the-moment ideas, it requires almost superhuman preparation. The cast has to master 72 possible permutations of the plot, and they almost never perform the same sequence two nights in a row. (Fans can purchase a script with all potential outcomes at the show.)

“Essentially you have close to six hours of scripted material in a show that runs around an hour,” says De Gré. “The challenge for me was to ensure that every character arc was fulfilled in some way through every possible outcome.”

Kurtz, the playwright, adds, “The hardest things about the rehearsal process were having time to really go over the script and make sure, no matter what the die decided, the play still flowed smoothly.” Kurtz alternates in the role of George with another actor, and he says that memorization was tricky as well: “We might have a similar back and forth in two different permutations, but they’re subtly different and if we don’t get it right, then it doesn’t work for the roll we’re in.”

Philip James, the other actor who plays George, says his greatest hurdle has been “keeping things fresh without losing the timing of the comedy.” Kurtz agrees, adding, “The only time I’m a little disappointed is when it lands on a roll that happened in the previous performance. I’m always excited when a roll pops up that hasn’t happened in a while.”

As the die would have it, one particular outcome seems to emerge more than any other.

“During four years of workshops, the die never landed on ‘George prostitutes himself,’” De Gré says. “And we have landed on prostitution three of five nights so far plus both dress rehearsals!”

“A little prostitution’s never a bad thing, though,” Kurtz says.



Doug Strassler is a critic, reporter, and the editor of the NY IT Awards newsletter



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