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The Lifespan of a Fact

Produced by American Lives Theatre at The Phoenix Theatre of Indianapolis

Won Broadway World's 2022 Best Sound Design of a Play or Musical

Photo by Indy Ghostlight

A bright young fact checker, a talented but dismissive writer, and their beleaguered editor go head to head in a comedic yet gripping battle over Facts versus Truth.


Produced by American Lives Theatre at the Phoenix Theatre of Indianapolis

Director - Chris Saunders, Sound Design and Music Composition - Aidan Sturgeon

Stage Manager - Maryssa Small, Projection Design - Jess Token

Lighting Design - Tim Dick, Set Design - Kerry Lee Chipman,

Costume Design - Anthony James Sirk.

Making Phones Ring on Stage

Lifespan Phones Photo 1_edited.jpg

One of our actors with the nearly period-correct iPhone 5. 


An example of one of the phone's test tracks, and phone notifications on QLab Go Button. 

During the Lifespan of a Fact, I was experimenting with the idea of making a smartphone ring or recieve a notification based on a stage manager's cue over a wireless network. I feel like this technique particularly excels in storefront/black box situations because it heightens the sense of reality that is often carved in intimate situations. The wireless technique that I used did work, but there are improvements that I am working on to make it a less involved process for the stage manager. 

With this composition that opens the show, the director and I wanted to highlight the tense nature of the play and the approaching deadline, while also balancing the delicate nature of the subject matter. During this composition, the writer narrates the first paragraph of his essay.

With this piece, there is a variation on the main theme as the story opens up later in the play. As our perspective of the truth is changed, so does the motif that carries us through the show.

This piece was written to help support the feeling of "it's time to get stuff done", Monday is the deadline and we don't have a second to spare. This piece of music comes right after the three decide that they will commit to revising the essay and getting to a point that is acceptable.

We used this piece early in the show right before Jim gets assigned to fact-check the article as his first big break. We wanted to evoke a sense of excitement and possibility, but as with every other piece of music it gets cut off by a bassy boom, to symbolize the strict deadline they are all on.

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