TONYAWARDS2nd Annual Tony Awards ContestThis is way easier than trying to pickyour favorite bracket. If you have aflair for knowing who will win at theTony’s, then you could clean up inKC Stage swag. Prize includes aone-year subscription to KC Stage.Check out KC Stage’s main page atwww.kcstage.com and look for thecontest. The link will be up on June 1.Be sure to register by noon on June 10. And the award goes to...
Spotlight on Marcus Mullby Jeanne BeechwoodRumor has it the Martin City Melodrama is being tions and marketing our unique theatrical product. Evenrenamed the Marcus City Melodrama. Is this true? when I am out of the office, I continue to think of showThis was originally a joke because every once in a while ideas and really enjoy that creative process that keepsI would answer the box office phone at Martin City spinning and spinning.with “Marcus City Melodrama, how may I help you?”. When and where did you graduate from college?Is that your job for the Martin City Melodrama, to I graduated from Sterling College, in Sterling, Kan.,answer the phone? spring of 2011 with a BA in theatre communications.I help Jeanne run the theatre business and act in allthe shows. So how did it happen, you weren’t out of college for barely a year and now you are helping run MartinCan you describe a typical day at work? City?Running a small business has new surprises every day. It happened all at once. I graduated May 13, 2011 fromHelping run a small theatre business never has a typical college and by May 15 I was hired by the Great Plainsday. Last weekend, we took Rumpelstilskin ... Recycled!?!, Theatre in Abilene, Kan. I took on work as an actor,an original show for children that I co-wrote, to the Great set construction, and the box office. I also workedPlains Mall in Olathe. We brought in the sets, costumes, with stage management in the company. This contractand music and I play the titlerole of Rumpelstilskin. Afterperforming the show, we toredown the set and so forth anddrove back to our Metcalf Southlocation to perform our eveningshow. All the while we are stillanswering the phone and sell-ing tickets. After the load in, weprepared the Metcalf theatre tobe audience ready. Sweeping,cleaning the bathrooms, gettingthe snack bar ready, setting thecabaret tables and chairs andthen perform Completely Hol-lywood with as much energy as kelly luckrequired. After that show, wecleaned up the theatre alongwith cast mates Nino Cassi and Dianne Brown, then lasted until August 14. During my employment withyou and I had a production meeting to cover some issues the Great Plains Theatre, I made a trip up to auditionbefore the next day’s performances. for the Mystery Train Theatre. I couldn’t audition for you yet, because you were in New York performing atWas that considered a long day? the International Fringe Festival. The Mystery TrainRunning a small business reminds me of my recent time Theatre offered me work as a stage manager. The nextin college. There are times when everything is crazy week I received a phone call the day before I movedand deadlines are due and you keep going and going to Kansas City that the lead quit in the mystery pro-to make sure everything gets done. Other times are not duction and I would be playing the lead role in Extra!so crazy and we continue writing our original produc- Continued on page 202 KCSTAGE “Always make the audience suffer as much as possible.” ~ Alfred Hitchcock
Gladstone Theatre in the Park Celebrates 25 Yearsby Jamie LinThis summer marks the 25th season of Gladstone and there have been no further incidences of arson orTheatre in the Park, the only community theatre in vandalism.the Northland. In 1988, Van and Susie Ibsen of Ibsen In the face of a crisis, the community rose up to helpDance Theatre decided that their community needed GTIP have a successful season, but they don’t just showlocal opportunities to participate in theatre so that they up in times of tragedy. The Ibsens have a team of fivewouldn’t have to drive so far south. They wrote a letter advisors that help them keep things running on a day toto the City of Gladstone and proposed doing one show day basis: Becky Clark, Michelle Coon, Julie Crawford,in Oak Grove Park (Ibsen Dance Theatre would provide Lennette Johnson, and Jennifer Kessler. The advisoryall the sets, lights, sound, scripts, etc. and the city would board is on a 2 to 3 year rotating membership and isprovide the electricity, the park, and the parking) to responsible for selecting the shows and the directorssee if the community would support a summer the- of both musicals every summer. They also make sureatre program. The city agreed and GTIP put on its first the operation is well organized with every person,production, Oliver, with almost 50 people in the cast staff member, volunteer, deadline, and future growthand over 800 audience members for each of the three accounted for. GTIP also has an operation manual thatperformances. Sheila Lillis, head of Parks and Recre- the board follows and updates each year using theation, loved the response and proposed doing summer feedback from the major participates and volunteers.theatre in the park to the mayor and the city council. It Gladstone Theatre in the Park is a well-oiled machinewas unanimously accepted. From 1988 to the present, and that is why they have been able to be so successfulGTIP has produced two musicals every summer with for 25 years.casts ranging from 50 to 130 people and the audience Because the shows are so popular and so manyusually averaging around 3,000 to 3,500 each night. patrons show up early to save themselves seats, they It seemed that the Ibsens had found a recipe for suc- have even devised a system to ensure that the blanketscess: family friendly musicals with large casts and free and chairs don’t damage the grass. This long standingadmission for all. This formula enabled thousands of tradition is known as “the blanket run”. At 3 pm onpeople in the Northland to be a part of the theatre scene show days, hundreds of excited audience members linethat was previously out of their reach. With the efforts up at the edge of the seating area and wait for a whistleand donations of the community and local businesses, to blow. Once they hear the whistle, they rush to beatGladstone Theatre in the Park was able to build a per- each other to the piece of grass with the best view ofmanent structure in Oak Grove Park in 1995 so that the stage. You can watch a video of a blanket run onthey no longer had to build a stage from scratch every their website.summer. In 2001, however, it was tragically burned to Any theatre company that can generate that muchthe ground in an act of arson on July 15, Van Ibsen’s excitement year after year, show after show, must bebirthday. The community was devastated by the loss but doing something right. Susie Ibsen attributed much ofrather than canceling Lil’ Abner, which was in its second the success to the actors that audition year after year.week of rehearsal at the time, they gave new meaning “The level of talent continues to grow. We have manyto the phrase “the show must go on”. “We had more performers who have gone on to perform profession-volunteers than I have ever seen come to our assistance,” ally.” Among those performers are well known namesVan said. “We cleared away the old stage, cleaned the such as Lauren Braton, often seen at the American Heart-concrete platform and built the set in one weekend with land Theatre and Musical Theatre Heritage, Robert Erikthe assistance of people from almost every theatre in Sobbe, fresh off his starring role in Egads! Theatre Com-town including Shawnee Mission Theatre in the Park, pany’s Zombie Prom, and Brian Shortess, another EubankQuality Hill Playhouse, Missouri Rep, River City Play- favorite and commercial actor.ers, and so many more that I can’t remember! We opened Not only do they put on phenomenal shows that leadon time with a wonderful production and with great to successful acting careers, they are bringing familiesaudience support.” A new structure has since been built Continued on page 18www.kcstage.com JUNE 2012 3
Hanging Fringe on the Arch: St. Louis Starts Fringe Festivalby Angie FiedlerEmily Piro, the executive director of the new St. Louis yet, but the idea had always stuck in the back of myFringe Festival, actually had the idea for something mind,” she says.similar back in 2007. “I’m from Seattle originally and I However, in 2011, a series of events started with amoved to St. Louis, and really started getting involved discussion with the New York playwright of the showin the art scene here, especially the performing arts Piro was touring — she worked for the Seattle Fringeand theatre scene,” Festival and rememberedPiro says. “What Piro’s show. “I was like,really struck me is ‘You worked for thethe really unique tone Seattle Fringe — tell methat every theatre more about that,’” Pirocompany here has. continues. “And she said,You really can’t inter- ‘You know, it was justchange one show for something that a groupthe next, you know? of people started becauseWhen you go to see they felt the city reallya company show, needed it.’ And I said,you really kind of ‘Well, I think St. Louisknow how it’s going really needs it.’ That’s allto feel, how it’s going it takes — that notion to beto work, what kind able to say that it’s some-of work’s going to thing the city needs.be there. And that “And this time whenwas something that I started floating the ideawas really exciting to around again, differentme, and I wondered people in the communityif all the audiences instead of being, ‘no, thatthat are in St. Louis will never work’,know about the really they were, ‘Yes, weincredible diversity of need it, we want it.work and all the dif- This is somethingferent types of work really necessarythat are here. There’s brian peters right now andreally something for everybody. So, if you’re goingI had this idea: what if we had this to put thefestival where all these different com- work into it,panies could really showcase what they we’ll backdo really well and then we get a sense you 100%.’of the type of work that’s already going I don’ton in this city.” know if At the time, no one she talked to really this isjumped on the idea. Worries about shar- happening ining resources and space were predominant, the rest of the country, butand Piro shelved the idea — but never really I know in St. Louis definitely there’sgave up on it. “I didn’t have the name ‘fringe’ been this incredible wave of the creative culture, Continued on page 174 KCSTAGE “The virtue of dress rehearsals is that they are a free show for a select group of artists and friends of the author, and where for one unique evening the audience is almost expurgated of idiots.” ~ Alfred Jarry
And the Cappie Goes To...On May 26, the 10th annual Kansas City Cappies were Female Dancer: Hayley Farrell, Raymore-Peculiarpresented. The Kansas City Cappies works with high High School, Legally Blondeschool theatre students all over the metro area; cultivat- Male Dancer: Reuben Hoyle, Blue Springs Southing their writing skills, improving their critical analysis High School, Brigadoonabilities, and honoring their talents and skills in and on Female Vocalist: Taylor Carr, Summit Christiantheir school plays and musicals. The Kansas City Cap- Academy, Hello, Dolly!pies recognizes these excellent students in 37 different Male Vocalist: Daniel Verschelden, Lee’s Summitcategories. The voting was held on May 1. For more High School, Guys & Dollsinformation, including a list of all the nominees, visit Comic Actress in a Play: Sarah Goodman, Centerwww.cappies.com/kcc. High School, See How They Run Comic Actor in a Play: Nathaniel Weber, Raymore- Marketing and Publicity: Amber Coultis, Chloe Jack- Peculiar High School, The Foreignerson, Belton High School, The Crucible Comic Actress in a Musical: Lara Ware, Belton High Sound: Mathias Ham, Ryan Rouse, Summit Christian School, Bye Bye BirdieAcademy, God’s Favorite Comic Actor in a Musical: Austin Welhoff, Harri- Lighting: Brendon Dale, Ruskin High School, Almost, sonville High School, FootlooseMaine Supporting Actress in a Play: Nellie Maple, Raymore- Sets: Ingrid Roettgen, Lee’s Summit West High Peculiar High School, The ForeignerSchool, A Christmas Carol Supporting Actor in a Play: Jacob Bogart, Lee’s Sum- Costumes: Shelby Hulsey, Sarah Muir, Kayla Redd,, mit West High School, A Christmas CarolLee’s Summit West High School, A Christmas Carol Supporting Actress in a Musical: Haley Crane, Ray- Make-up: Kylee Schuh, Summit Christian Academy, more-Peculiar High School, Legally BlondeHello, Dolly! Supporting Actor in a Musical: Ben Nickols, Excelsior Props: Sonia Jacobson, Morgan Shea Lyle, Raymore- Springs High School, Zombie PromPeculiar High School, The Foreigner Lead Actress in a Play: Hayley Farrell, Raymore- Special Effects and or Technology: Tyler Fleming, Peculiar High School, The ForeignerExcelsior Springs High School, Zombie Prom Lead Actor in a Play: Dane Schnake, Raymore-Pecu- Stage Crew: Jake Salm, Shannah Withrow, Summit liar High School, The ForeignerChristian Academy, God’s Favorite Lead Actress in a Musical: Nellie Maple, Raymore- Orchestra: The Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Peculiar High School, Legally BlondeDreamcoat Orchestra, Lee’s Summit West High School Lead Actor in a Musical: Jon Gibson, Lee’s Summit Choreography: Austin Welhoff, Emily Tracy, Har- West High School, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolorrisonville High School, Footloose Dreamcoat Creativity: Austin Strassle, Violin, Ruskin High Song: “Luck Be A Lady”, Lee’s Summit High School,School, Fame Guys & Dolls Ensemble in a Play: The Carolers, Lee’s Summit West Play: The Foreigner, Raymore-Peculiar High SchoolHigh School, A Christmas Carol Musical: Hello, Dolly!, Summit Christian Academy Ensemble in a Musical: Cornelius, Irene, Barnaby, Female Critic: Michaela Wiehe, Raymore-PeculiarMinnie, Summit Christian Academy, Hello, Dolly! High School Featured Actress: Chloe Jackson, Belton High School, Male Critic: Austin Strassle, Ruskin High SchoolThe Crucible Critic Team: Raymore-Peculiar High School R Featured Actor: Bobby Turnbough, Raymore-Pecu-liar High School, The Foreignerwww.kcstage.com JUNE 2012 5
Heart of America Shakespeare Festival: 20 Years Under the Starsby Thomas CanfieldOn a rainy June evening in 1993, the inaugural produc- donor meetings, and founding a Strictly Shakespearetion of the Heart of America Shakespeare Festival, The organization of supporters. Londré’s many contributionsTempest, opened in Southmoreland Park. For Marilyn included supplying model budgets, writing preliminaryStrauss, the festival’s founder, this was “such stuff / As proposals for a free Shakespeare festival, and creatingdreams are made on.” Yet realizing an outdoor, pro- a persuasive slide lecture on “The Shakespeare Festivalfessional, free summer Shakespeare production was a Phenomenon.”hard-won battle, and no one could predict its future In October of 1992, Strauss produced a gala fund-over the next two decades. raiser at the Folly Theater starring Kevin Kline, who Strauss, who grew up in Kansas City, began her pro- performed scenes from Shakespeare’s works. The sold-fessional theatre career in the 1970s when she organized out benefit, for which Kline generously donated histhe Leonard Bernstein Festival with the Kansas City talent, netted $100,000. “Now, we could choose a play,Philharmonic. This propelled her to a career on the Great hire a director, actors, designers, and technical experts,”White Way, where Strauss co-produced five plays and Strauss says. “We could build a set, make costumes,discovered Da, Hugh Leonard’s Irish comedy/drama, tailor the park, garner hundreds of volunteers, and begin 1978. When the production was transferred to Broad- all kinds of services.” From its conception, the festivalway, it earned six Tony awards — including Best Play took nearly three years to premiere.— and garnered Strauss a Tony. She also received an A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Antony and Cleopa-Obie for the off-Broadway play Getting Out and a Tony tra, performed in rotating repertory this summer, willnomination for the musical Pump Boys and Dinettes. mark 26 total productions of 18 different plays in the Homesick for the Midwest, Strauss returned to Kan- festival’s history, and it will be the first time the festivalsas City eleven years later to begin another chapter in performs Anthony and Cleopatra. To achieve a sharedher career. “I had a secret thought that I wanted to vision, executive artistic director Sidonie Garrett anddo theatre,” she says. Determined for success, Strauss assistant director Todd Lanker will juggle simultane-recalls thinking, “’Nobody turns away from Shake- ous rehearsals. Eventually, Garrett hopes that the entirespeare. That’s a safe way to go.’ I wanted to be sure.” canon will be produced since a two-show season —Aside from reading a few plays, however, she admits: “Ireally didn’t know much about Shakespeare” at the time. brian collins As luck would have it, a local Shakespeare scholarwith an identical dream was eager to collaborate. In1990, Strauss met Felicia Hardison Londré, curators’professor of theatre at UMKC, who became the festival’shonorary co-founder. While researching her book onShakespeare Companies and Festivals: An InternationalGuide, Londré had been travelling to Shakespeare fes-tivals throughout the United States and Europe. Founding a Shakespeare festival meant courting thecity, potential funders, and the community. At the time,it would be the only free outdoor Shakespeare festivalin a tri-state area. Convincing Kansas City to join theranks of approximately 100-120 Shakespeare compa-nies in the United States was “an uphill climb,” Strausssays. Advised to start small, Strauss replied, “I’m notgoing to start small. I’m going to go full force, and if itworks, it’ll work.” She spent countless hours planning, Bruce Roach in Richard III.gathering information, making phone calls, attending6 KCSTAGE “Tallulah Bankhead” ~ Tristan Bernard
Heart of America Shakespeare Festival: 20 Years Under the Stars ing rehearsals forced everyone to take refuge under doug hamer a tent. The director, Bruce Levitt, told jokes while “actors emptied the fast-accumulating rain from the canvas overhead and others blocked holes where rain was coming through,” she says. “That also may have been the summer when we sank in mud to the top of our tennis shoes in spite of the bales of hay the Parks and Recreation Department strewed around the paths.” Garrett’s first year with the festival as a young assis- tant director was on The Taming of the Shrew in 1995. Charged with maintaining the show after the director departed, she says, “It was the hottest summer on record that any of us can recall. We would leave the park and it would still be 100 degrees.” During one performance, Continued on page 19 Jason Chanos in Hamlet.which the festival hopes to continue — allowsfor greater flexibility in choices than a singleoffering. “Traditionally, Shakespearean plays wereviewed outdoors by boisterous crowds whoroutinely ate and drank during the perfor-mance,” an early festival brochure notes. Formany audience members, the performancesin the park are their only exposure to live the-atre, and the casual atmosphere is frequentlypunctuated by animated conversation, thecrumpling of potato chip bags, and the crackof opening soda cans. Last season, almost23,000 people attended Macbeth. Space is typi-cally at a premium during the last weekendof the run; Garrett recalls that the final perfor-mances of Twelfth Night in 2001 saw close to2,500 people crowded into the park at once. Rehearsals begin indoors, but once in thepark the company is at the mercy of insects,unpredictable weather, sirens, and even fire-works and helicopters overhead. Rain canforce a hasty retreat to the hall, which meansreduced time rehearsing on the actual set. doug hamerMovement coach Jennifer Martin remembers Robert Gibby Brand in The Tempest.one year when a furious thunderstorm dur-www.kcstage.com JUNE 2012 7
Performanceswww.kcstage.com/performancesThe Barn Players, Inc.* marianne kilroy/coterie theatre101 Dalmatians, Kids - Session # 1 byMel Leven, Randy Rogel, Richard Gibbs,Brian Smith, Martin Lee Fuller, DanRoot, Marcy Heisler and Bryan Louiselle:Jun 19-21: 7:30 pm Tue-ThrIn a loving home in the city of London, Dalma-tian parents, Pongo and Perdita happily raisetheir Dalmatian puppies, until the monstrousCruella De Vil plots to steal them for her newfur coat! Join all the dogs of London, as theydaringly rescue the puppies from Cruella andher bumbling henchmen. With a delightfully funscore, lovable characters, and one of the mostdeliciously evil villains in the Disney canon,this stage adaptation is certain to charm anddelight all audiences. Directed by Jason Coats.$5. The Barn Players, 6219 Martway St, (913)432-9100, www.thebarnplayers.orgPrelude To A Kiss by Craig Lucas:Jun 1-17: 7:30 pm Fri-Sat; 2 pm SunAt Peter and Rita’s wedding, a mysterious oldman insists on kissing the bride. While hon-eymooning, Peter gradually realizes that thewoman by his side is not his wife. The weddingkiss caused Rita’s soul and the old man’s tochange places. Peter must track down the oldman and free his young love’s spirit trappedin an aging and diseased body before it’s toolate. Directed by Darren Sextro. $18; seniors$15; students $10; 10 or more $12. The BarnPlayers, 6219 Martway St, (913) 432-9100,www.thebarnplayers.orgCharlotte Street FoundationExhibit Sway: In the Current: Jun 2:6 pm Fri; 12 pm SatNew dance works exploring the human psycheinspired by and presented with photographicwork by Elijah Gowin. Free. La Esquina,1000 W 25th St, (816) 221-5115, www.charlottestreet.org AChestnut Fine Arts Theatre Julie Shaw in Once Upon a Mattress at the Coterie Theatre.And The Oscar Goes To ... : May 17-Jun 17: 8 pm Thr-Sat; 2 pm SunAnd the Oscar Goes To … celebrates the silver your favorite Oscar-winning songs - “Lullaby $23, discounts for seniors, children, & groups.screen and Hollywood. Since the invention of of Broadway”, “When You Wish Upon a Star”, Chestnut Fine Arts Center & Theatre, 234 Nthe motion picture, movies and music have “Buttons and Bows”, “Thanks for the Memory” Chestnut St, (913) 764-2121, chestnutfinearts.been intertwined … so take your seat and enjoy and many more! Directed by Brad Zimmerman. com *Affiliate Organizations offer discounts to subscribers of KC Stage. Display your member- Content Guide: Unless otherwise noted, the subject matter of performances should ship card at the box office or mention it when ordering tickets over the phone. For a list be suitable for general audiences. Shows marked with A contain adult material that of discounts and other offers, visit www.kcstage.com. Don’t forget to rate or review the may not be appropriate for children under the age of 18. Shows marked C contain shows you see online! material that is specifically intended for children. Please note that these content markings are designated by the individual arts organizations, not by KC Stage.8 KCSTAGE “The center of the stage is where I am.” ~ Martha Graham
PerformancesCorbin Theatre Company turing Natalie King, Colter Lemmon, Casey Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre37 Postcards by Michael McKeever: McCabe, Lindsey Oetken, Annie Rosenbrook, and Andrew Walker. $4-$15. Karl C. Bruder A Funny Thing Happened on the WayMay 31-Jun 9: 7:30 pm Thr-Sat to the Forum by Burt Shevelove, LarryAfter eight years of traveling abroad, Avery Sut- Theatre, King Hall, (620) 341-6378, www. emporia.edu/theatre Gelbart, & Stephen Sondheim: May 30-ton is coming home - home to the warmth and Jun 17: 7:30 pm Wed-Sat; 2 pm Suncomfort of his family. Unfortunately, things aren’t Tragedy tomorrow, comedy tonight! Outra-quite as comfortable as Avery remembers. 37 Kacico Dance geous, farcical things pile upon one anotherPostcards shows that you can, in fact, go home Little Red Riding Hood: A Newfangled to create a glorious car wreck in this riotousagain. You just never know what you’re going to Prairie Tale: Jun 8: 2 pm, 7 pm Fri “Roman” musical farce. The slave Pseudolusfind. Directed by Maggie Thomas. $10. Corbin Kacico Dance’s telling of Little Red Riding strikes a bargain with young Hero. If Pseu-Theatre Company, 15 N Water St, (816) 476- Hood: A Newfangled Prairie Tale is a dance dolus can arrange for Hero to get the girl of2705, www.corbintheatre.org narrative based on the book by local Missouri his dreams, then Hero will give Pseudolus his author Lisa Campbell Ernst and published by freedom. And from this, all else ensues. Win-The Coterie Theatre Simon & Shuster Children’s Publishing. This is ner of multiple Tony Awards, this play couldOnce Upon a Mattress by Mary Rodg- a family friendly show that is intended for a have be accurately titled, “Many, many funnyers, Marshal Barer, Jay Thompson, and multigenerational audience. Through original things happened on the way to the Forum.”Dean Fuller: Jun 19-Aug 5: 11 am choreography, live music by KC Singer/Song Directed by John Robert Paisley. $35 Fri-Sat,Tue-Fri; 2 pm Sat-Sun; 7 pm Fri; writer Dave Patmore, bright costumes and $30-Thur-Sun, $20 student. Metropolitan1:30 pm Wed-Fri props, Kacico Dance will bring this traditional Ensemble Theatre, 3604 Main St, (816) 569-Control-freak mom, Queen Aggravain, chases story to life… with a twist! Directed by Allison 3226, www.metkc.orgoff her son’s chances of finding a Princess by McKinzie, Holly Noel Harmison, and Maggiecreating unbeatable tests. Along comes klutzy Osgood Nicholls. $8. Cultural Arts Center -Metropolitan Community Center- Longview, Mid-America Arts AlliancePrincess Winnifred from the swamp (who swims LIVE! in the Crossroads, featuring Mak-the moat) to set the Prince’s heart aflame. So, 500 SW Longview Rd., www.kacicodance.org ing Movies: Jun 1: 6:30 pm Frithe Queen plans her most difficult challenge Mid-America Arts Alliance is proud to presentyet. The palace is filled with merriment and The KC Improv Company LIVE! in the Crossroads on First Fridays in themischief while everyone wonders: will Prin- The KC Improv Company’s Big Show: Crossroads Arts District. Our LIVE! activities arecess “Fred” pass the Queen’s test? Directed May 5-Jun 30: 8 pm Sat free and family-friendly. On Friday, June 1, theby Jeff Church. Adults: $15; youth, students, The KC Improv Company has been doing it public is invited to join us for a performanceor seniors: $10. The Coterie Theatre, 2450 however the audience wants it since 2000. by the Latin/Salsa/Rock fusion band, MakingGrand Blvd, Ste 144, (816) 474-6552, www. Tonight they do an adults-only improvised show Movies. Individuals interested in presenting orcoterietheatre.org featuring fast-and-furious games, plus Chi- performing at a future LIVE! event may contact cago-style long-form improvisation. Directed Christine Bial, Curator of Performing Arts, atEmporia State University Theatre by Tim Marks, Scott Connerly, and Keith Curtis. email@example.com or 816-421-1388, ext.Dearly Beloved by Jones, Hope, and $10; $5 for students. The Kick Comedy Theater 227, for more information. Mid-America ArtsWooten: Jun 13-16: 7:30 pm Wed-Sat (Westport Coffeehouse Theater), 4010 Pennsyl-The three Futrelle Sisters are throwing a wed- vania, (913) 486-6861, www.kcimprov.com A Continued on page 12ding. But nothing is working out and now thebride and her groom are missing. As they try rita marksto figure out a way to salvage the wedding,they reunite their old singing group “The Ser-monettes”. Directed by Jim Bartruff. FeaturingKylie Geiman, Jeannie Harper, Colter Lem-mon, Carolyn Lohkamp, Casey McCabe,Andrew McCutcheon, Noah Mefford, AubreyNear, Annie Rosenbrook, Trinity Standridge,and Christina Hardin. $4-$15. Karl C. BruderTheatre, King Hall, (620) 341-6378, www.emporia.edu/theatreThe Fox on the Fairway by Ken Ludwig:Jun 27-30: 7:30 pm Wed-SatLudwig’s tribute to the great English farces ofthe 1930s and 1940s, A Fox on the Fairwaytakes audiences on a hilarious romp whichpulls the rug out from underneath the stuffydenizens of a private country club. Filled withmistaken identities, slamming doors, and over-the-top romantic shenanigans, it is a furiouslypaced comedy. Directed by Jim Ryan. Fea- Members of the KC Improv Company.www.kcstage.com JUNE 2012 9
*Affiliate TheatreKCSTAGE JUNE 201228 MON 29 TUE 1 FRI 2 SAT 3 SUNNO PERFORMANCES The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee • The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee • The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee • The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee • New Theatre Restaurant New Theatre Restaurant New Theatre Restaurant New Theatre Restaurant Everyday Rapture • Unicorn Theatre 37 Postcards • Corbin Theatre Company 37 Postcards • Corbin Theatre Company The 39 Steps • Theatre Atchison The 39 Steps • Theatre Atchison The 39 Steps • Theatre Atchison And The Oscar Goes To... • Chestnut Fine Arts And The Oscar Goes To... • Chestnut Fine Arts And The Oscar Goes To... • Chestnut Fine Arts Chicago • Music Theatre for Young People30 WED 31 THU Everyday Rapture • Unicorn Theatre Chicago • Music Theatre for Young People Everyday Rapture • Unicorn TheatreThe 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee • The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee • Exhibit Sway: In the Current • Charlotte Street Everyday Rapture • Unicorn Theatre A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum • New Theatre Restaurant New Theatre Restaurant Foundation Exhibit Sway: In the Current • Charlotte Street Metropolitan Ensemble TheatreEveryday Rapture • Unicorn Theatre 37 Postcards • Corbin Theatre Company A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum • Foundation Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill PlayhouseA Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum • And The Oscar Goes To... • Chestnut Fine Arts Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum • Prelude To A Kiss • The Barn Players, Inc.* Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre Everyday Rapture • Unicorn Theatre The Night of the Assassins • The Mystery Train Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre Who’s in Bed with the Butler • Paradise Playhouse A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum • Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse The KC Improv Company’s Big Show • The KC Dinner Theatre Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre Prelude To A Kiss • The Barn Players, Inc.* Improv Company Visiting Mr Green • The White Theatre Who’s in Bed with the Butler • Paradise Playhouse The Night of the Assassins • The Mystery Train Dinner Theatre Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse Prelude To A Kiss • The Barn Players, Inc.* Visiting Mr Green • The White Theatre Who’s in Bed with the Butler • Paradise Playhouse Dinner Theatre4 MON 5 TUE 8 FRI 9 SAT 10 SUNPete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee • The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee • The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee • The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee • New Theatre Restaurant New Theatre Restaurant New Theatre Restaurant New Theatre Restaurant 37 Postcards • Corbin Theatre Company 37 Postcards • Corbin Theatre Company The 39 Steps • Theatre Atchison The 39 Steps • Theatre Atchison The 39 Steps • Theatre Atchison And The Oscar Goes To... • Chestnut Fine Arts6 WED 7 THU And The Oscar Goes To... • Chestnut Fine Arts And The Oscar Goes To... • Chestnut Fine Arts A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum •The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee • The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee • A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum • A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum • Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre New Theatre Restaurant New Theatre Restaurant Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill PlayhouseA Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum • 37 Postcards • Corbin Theatre Company Hula Heart • University of Central Missouri Theatre* The KC Improv Company’s Big Show • The KC Prelude To A Kiss • The Barn Players, Inc.* Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre And The Oscar Goes To... • Chestnut Fine Arts Little Red Riding Hood: A Newfangled Prairie Tale • Improv Company The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets*Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum • Kacico Dance The Night of the Assassins • The Mystery Train Sweeney Todd • The Theatre in the ParkThe Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets* Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre The Night of the Assassins • The Mystery Train Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse Visiting Mr Green • The White Theatre Hula Heart • University of Central Missouri Theatre* Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse Prelude To A Kiss • The Barn Players, Inc.* Who’s in Bed with the Butler • Paradise Playhouse Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse Prelude To A Kiss • The Barn Players, Inc.* The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets* Dinner Theatre The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets* The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets* Sweeney Todd • The Theatre in the Park Visiting Mr Green • The White Theatre Sweeney Todd • The Theatre in the Park Visiting Mr Green • The White Theatre Who’s in Bed with the Butler • Paradise Playhouse Who’s in Bed with the Butler • Paradise Playhouse Dinner Theatre Dinner Theatre11 MON 12 TUE 15 FRI 16 SAT 17 SUNPete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse The 25th Annual Spelling Bee • New Theatre The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee • The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee • The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee • Pippi Longstocking • Theatre for Young America* New Theatre Restaurant New Theatre Restaurant New Theatre Restaurant Hula Heart • University of Central Missouri Theatre* The Adventures of Pippi Longstocking • Theatre for The Adventures of Pippi Longstocking • Theatre for And The Oscar Goes To... • Chestnut Fine Arts Young America* Young America* A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum • And The Oscar Goes To... • Chestnut Fine Arts And The Oscar Goes To... • Chestnut Fine Arts Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre13 WED 14 THU Dearly Beloved • Emporia State University Theatre Dearly Beloved • Emporia State University Theatre Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill PlayhouseThe 25th Annual Spelling Bee • New Theatre The 25th Annual Spelling Bee • New Theatre
The Adventures of Pippi Longstocking • Theatre for The Adventures of Pippi Longstocking • Theatre for A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum • A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum • Prelude To A Kiss • The Barn Players, Inc.* Young America* Young America* Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets*Dearly Beloved • Emporia State University Theatre And The Oscar Goes To... • Chestnut Fine Arts Hula Heart • University of Central Missouri Theatre* The KC Improv Company’s Big Show • The KC Sweeney Todd • The Theatre in the ParkA Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum • Dearly Beloved • Emporia State University Theatre Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse Improv Company Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum • Prelude To A Kiss • The Barn Players, Inc.* Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill PlayhousePete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets* Prelude To A Kiss • The Barn Players, Inc.*The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets* Hula Heart • University of Central Missouri Theatre* Sweeney Todd • The Theatre in the Park The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets* Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse Who’s in Bed with the Butler • Paradise Playhouse Sweeney Todd • The Theatre in the Park The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets* Dinner Theatre The Three Billy Goats Gruff • Puppetry Arts Institute Sweeney Todd • The Theatre in the Park Who’s in Bed with the Butler • Paradise Playhouse Who’s in Bed with the Butler • Paradise Playhouse Dinner Theatre18 MON 19 TUE 22 FRI 23 SAT 24 SUNNO PERFORMANCES 101 Dalmatians, Kids - Session # 1 • The Barn The Adventures of Pippi Longstocking • Theatre for The Adventures of Pippi Longstocking • Theatre for Legally Blonde • The Theatre in the Park Players, Inc.* Young America* Young America* Once Upon a Mattress • The Coterie Theatre The Adventures of Pippi Longstocking • Theatre for Legally Blonde • The Theatre in the Park The KC Improv Company’s Big Show • The KC Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse Young America* Once Upon a Mattress • The Coterie Theatre Improv Company The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets* Once Upon a Mattress • The Coterie Theatre Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse Legally Blonde • The Theatre in the Park Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets* Once Upon a Mattress • The Coterie Theatre Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets*20 WED 21 THU101 Dalmatians, Kids - Session # 1 • The Barn 101 Dalmatians, Kids - Session # 1 • The Barn Players, Inc.* Players, Inc.*The Adventures of Pippi Longstocking • Theatre for The Adventures of Pippi Longstocking • Theatre for Young America* Young America*Once Upon a Mattress • The Coterie Theatre Once Upon a Mattress • The Coterie TheatrePete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill PlayhouseThe Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets* The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets*25 MON 26 TUE 29 FRI 30 SAT 1 SUNNO PERFORMANCES The Adventures of Pippi Longstocking • Theatre for The Adventures of Pippi Longstocking • Theatre for The Adventures of Pippi Longstocking • Theatre for Legally Blonde • The Theatre in the Park Young America* Young America* Young America* Once Upon a Mattress • The Coterie Theatre Once Upon a Mattress • The Coterie Theatre The Fox on the Fairway • Emporia State University The Fox on the Fairway • Emporia State University Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse Theatre Theatre The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets* Legally Blonde • The Theatre in the Park The KC Improv Company’s Big Show • The KC Once Upon a Mattress • The Coterie Theatre Improv Company27 WED 28 THU Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse Legally Blonde • The Theatre in the Park AUDITIONSThe Adventures of Pippi Longstocking • Theatre for The Adventures of Pippi Longstocking • Theatre for JUN 1 • Christian Youth Theatre The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets* Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse Young America* Young America* JUN 2-3, 9-10 • The Barn Players The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets*The Fox on the Fairway • Emporia State University The Fox on the Fairway • Emporia State University JUN 4-6 • River City Community Players Theatre Theatre JUN 9-11 • The Theatre GymOnce Upon a Mattress • The Coterie Theatre Legally Blonde • The Theatre in the Park JUN 18 • The Culture HousePete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse Once Upon a Mattress • The Coterie TheatreThe Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets* Pete ‘n’ Keely • Quality Hill Playhouse The Stinky Cheese Man • Paul Mesner Puppets* *Affiliate Theatres offer discount tickets to subscribers of KC Stage. Display your membership card at the box office or mention it when ordering tickets over the phone. For a list of discounts and other offers, visit www.kcstage.com/affiliates. Don’t forget to rate the show you see online!
Performancescontinued from page 12Alliance, 2018 Baltimore Avenue, (816) 421- Puppetry Arts Institute Theatre Atchison1388, www.maaa.org The 39 Steps by Adapted by Patrick Bar- Piccadilly Productions low: Jun 1-10: 8 pm Fri-Sat; 2 pm Sun The Three Billy Goats Gruff: Jun 16: $10 adults; $6 students. Theatre Atchison,Music Theatre for Young People 2 pm, 11 am Sat 401 Santa Fe St, (913) 367-7469, www.Chicago: Jun 2-3: 7:30 pm Sat; Young Billy goat Gunther Gruff, has a fear theatreatchison.org2:30 pm Sun problem. You might say he has fearophobia,http://www.umkc.edu/adminservices/cto/ or phobophobia, if you will. Will a run-in withevents/umkc-theatre.asp for tickets. Directed by the hungry troll Dagmar cure him? And where is Theatre for Young America*Cary Pandzik and Matthew Allen. $15. UMKC Dagmar’s lunch bag? The show features audi- The Adventures of Pippi Longstocking byWhite Recital Hall, 4949 Cherry, (913) 341- ence participation, storytelling, and more of Gene Mackey: Jun 12-30: 12 pm Thr-8156, www.mtyp.org Piccadilly’s trademark puns and song numbers Fri; 10 am Tue-Fri; 7 pm Fri; 2 pm Sat keep the kids attention riveted. Directed by Lisa Pippi is a high-spirited, warm-hearted incar- Albright. $5. Puppetry Arts Institute, 11025 E nation of every child’s dream of freedom andThe Mystery Train Winner Rd, (816) 833-9777, www.hazelle.org power. With her unusual red braids of hair andThe Night of the Assassins by Wendy strange clothing, she is a young lass of unusualThompson: Apr 20-Jun 9: 6:30 pm strength. Though Pippi astounds people with herFri-Sat Quality Hill Playhouse physical strength, she never uses her ability toIn 1893, two of the finest from the wild, wild, Pete ‘n’ Keely: Jun 1-Jul 1: 8 pm Sun- harm anyone. Rollicking adventures abound inwest are called in on a special mission to pro- Sat; 3 pm Sat-Sun; 1 pm Wed-Thr her life in Villa Villekula where she lives alonetect the President. They are met with modern You are the live studio audience of the with her horse and pet monkey while her pirateideas, social reform, steam-powered mecha- 1968 television special reuniting “America’s dad is sailing the South Seas. Directed by Genenisms, and an array of assassins. A delicate swingin’ sweethearts” Pete Bartel and Keely Mackey. $8; group discounts available. Theatresituation, to say the least ... and then a murder Stevens in this hilarious spoof chock full of for Young America, H & R Block City Stage athappens! Directed by Wendy Thompson. $64 American standards (“Fever”, “Lover”, “But Union Station, (816) 460-2083, www.tya.org Ceach. The Golden Ox, 1600 Genessee, (816) Beautiful”) and eye-popping costumes! $29813-9654, A adults; $26 seniors/students. Quality Hill Play- house, 303 W 10th St, (816) 421-1700, www. Unicorn Theatre QualityHillPlayhouse.com Everyday Rapture by Dick Scanlan andNew Theatre Restaurant Sherie Renee Scott: May 16-Jun 3: 8 pmThe 25th Annual Putnam County Spell- Fri-Sat; 3 pm Sun; 7:30 pm Tue-Thring Bee by Rebecca Feldman, Rachel The Theatre in the Park A semi-autobiographical stage memoir by She-Sheinkin, William Finn, & Jay Reiss: Legally Blonde by Laurence O’Keefe, rie Rene Scott, this is the story of a woman’sApr 5-Jun 17: 12 pm Sat-Sun, Wed; Nell Benjamin, and Heather Hach: psycho-sexual-spiritual journey that separates6 pm Tue-Sun Jun 22-Jul 1: 8:30 pm Thr-Sun her mostly Mennonite past from her mostlyDirected by Joe R Fox III. $22.95 - $37.20. Sorority star Elle Woods doesn’t take “no” for Manhattan future. She travels from Topeka,New Theatre Restaurant, 9229 Foster St, www. an answer. So when her boyfriend dumps her Kan, to New York City with a disturbing detournewtheatre.com A for someone “serious”, Elle puts down the through YouTube. Filled with familiar tunes, this credit card, hits the books, and sets out to go musical follows Sherie’s road to Broadway where no Delta Nu has gone before: HarvardParadise Playhouse Dinner Theatre Law. Along the way, Elle proves that being true semi-stardom. This is the first production inWho’s in Bed with the Butler by Michael the nation since Sherie premiered the show to yourself never goes out of style. DirectedParker: May 25-Jun 16: 6 pm Fri-Sat; on Broadway. Directed by Jerry Jay Cranford. by Greg Shaw. Prices vary. The Theatre in the7 pm Thr; 12 pm Sun $27.50 - $37.50. Unicorn Theatre, 3828 Main Park, 7710 Renner Rd, (913) 236-1237, www.Directed by Larry Tesar. $30 - $32. Paradise St, (816) 531-7529, www.unicorntheatre.org A theatreinthepark.org APlayhouse Dinner Theatre, 101 Spring St, (816)630-3333, www.paradiseplayhouse.org A Sweeney Todd by Stephen Sondheim UCM Theatre* and Hugh Wheeler: Jun 8-17: 8:30 pm Central Missouri RepertoryPaul Mesner Puppets* Thr-Sun Hula Heart by Velina Hasu Houston:The Stinky Cheese Man by Jon Scieszka: This chilling, suspenseful, heart-pounding mas- Jun 15: 10 am Tue, Thr-FriJun 6-Jul 1: 2 pm Sat-Sun; 11 am terpiece of murderous barber-ism and culinary “Hula Heart” is the story of a young boy fromWed-Sat; 1:30 pm Wed-Fri crime tells of the unjustly exiled barber who Hawaii who moves to California and is facedAdapted from the wildly popular book by Jon returns to 19th century London seeking revenge with the dilemma of maintaining his nativeScieszka and Lane Smith, this rip-roaring fairy- against the lecherous judge who framed him roots or embracing a new and different culture.tale adventure is loads of fun for all ages. and ravaged his young wife. His thirst for blood With a cast of fantastic characters, beautifulYou’ll have fun with Jack, the narrator, as he soon expands to his unfortunate customers, hula dancing, and a message of being true totakes you through the twists and turns of this and the resourceful proprietress of the pie oneself, this is an unforgettable performancewacky tale, which contains zany versions of shop downstairs soon has people lining up that you won’t want to miss! Featuring Jus-storybook classics! Directed by Paul Mesner. for her mysterious new meat pies! Directed by tin Barron, Adam Tucker, Angie Benson, and$7 for children; $9 for adults. PMP Studio, Mark Swezey. Prices vary. The Theatre in the Miranda Powers. Whiteman AFB Community1006 E Linwood Blvd, (816) 235-6222, www. Park, 7710 Renner Rd, (913) 236-1237, www. Center, Building 528, (660) 543-8811, www.paulmesnerpuppets.org theatreinthepark.org A ucmo.edu/theatre12 KCSTAGE “If you really want to help the American theater, don’t be an actress, dahling. Be an audience.” ~ Tallulah Bankhead
Performances Events Film Clips www.kcstage.com/events by Larry LevensonThe White Theatre Christian Youth Theater Gary Huggins raised $70,000 to make his firstVisiting Mr. Green by Jeff Baron: May 31- LOGOS Dance Theatre Fairy Tale Ballet full-length movie entitled Kick Me. Starring inJun 10: 7:30 pm Sat, Thr; 2 pm Sun Camp: Jun 18-22: 9 am Mon-Fri the movie will be Kansas City, Kan., policemanDirected by Mark Swezey. The Lewis and Shirley Your little princess will learn basic dance tech- Santiago Vasquez, and plans are to shoot itWhite Theatre, 5801 West 115 Street, (913) nique, make fun crafts, and enjoy tasty treats. in the KC area.327-8054, www.jcckc.org A (Ages 4 - 7) All princesses get to take home A national Wal-Mart commercial was sched- their own camp t-shirt and tutu! See your bal- uled to be shot in KC, and SAG/AFTRA extras lerina shine at the Parent Show on Friday, June were being sought.Coming in July 22 at 11:30AM. Camp runs 9AM - noon each day. CYT Offices, 6800A W 153rd St., (913) Rural western Kansas is the setting for a hor-Blue Springs City Theatre* 681-3318, www.cytkc.org ror movie to be shot over the summer. CrewWilly Wonka the Musical in nearly every department is needed, so if Winnie the Pooh Theater Arts Camp for you are interested, visit www.rabidlovemovie.Paradise Playhouse Dinner Theatre ages 4-5: Jun 4-Aug 3: 9 am Mon-FriOver the River and Through the Woods com or www.facebook.com/rabidlovemovie Join CYT Kansas City as we act, sing and dance for information. by Joe DiPietro our way through the Hundred Acre Wood withPuppetry Arts Institute this exciting summer camp for pre-schoolers. A call went out for extras for a print project.Salt N’ Patter Puppets and Brementown Christopher Robin, Winnie the Pooh, Eeyore, The client was a regional KC bank.Musicians Piglet, Owl, Rabbit and Tigger will come along Bryan Blakey (Crime Family, Nine Grounds) is on our journey. Crafts and snacks are partRandomosity Productions, LLC looking for someone to play the lead female of the fun! Camps are half days at variousCRISSCROSS by Mark Katzman role of Mary in the movie PMS COP. The movie locations throughout the Kansas City metro. will be shot in Springfield, Mo. If you are inter-Summit Theatre Group Each camp is one week long. (913) 681-3318, ested, visit his website, www.pmscop.com, toThe Music Man by Meredith Wilson www.cytkc.org get his contact information. Requirements forThe Theatre in the Park the role are: needs to be athletic, talentedDisney’s Sleeping Beauty Kids Jewell Theatre Company* actress, available May, June, and July.Disney’s The Jungle Book Kids Jewell Theatre Camp: Jun 17-22: 1 amUrinetown by Mark Hollman, Greg Kotis TLC channel is casting for a new documentary Sun-Fri series about extreme money savers. If you haveTheatre for Young America* One Week Residential Theatre Camp for High been described as cheap or frugal, contactFair Ball: Negro Leagues in America by School Students! For more information and to TLCCastingshow@gmail.com, where you canGene Mackey register go to: www.jewell.edu/theatrecamp. describe your extraordinary money-saving tech- Peters Theater, Brown Hall, (816) 415-7588,The White Theatre niques. firstname.lastname@example.org RThe King & I by Rodgers & Hammerstein R Writer/director Jordan Essary is looking for actors to be in his new Christian short movie entitled “The Tree House”. The movie is set to go into production during the month of August in Missouri. Jordan is looking for boys ages 8-10, and girls ages 13-15. Contact Jordan Essary at: (361)443-2922, conceptoneproductions@ yahoo.com, or www.conceptoneproductions. com/the_tree_house_casting_call. Wright/Laird Casting was looking for a late- 40’s Caucasian woman with short, blonde hair for TV commercial. Auditions and call-back were held at Wright/ Laird Casting for a Missouri Lottery commercial to be shot in KC. R Are you a filmmaker in the KC area and want to submit news about your production to KC Stage? E-mail Larry at email@example.com before the 10th.www.kcstage.com JUNE 2012 13
View from the Bench: Two Weeks as a Reality Show Drama Criticby Kelly Luck“AUTHENTIC BOXING”, proclaims the sign outside some exciting performers down there that he feels wouldthe building as I pull up, emblazoned above a silhouette be ideal for the KC Fringe Festival, so the trip was worthraising its gloved hands in triumph. For a moment, I it. Next to him: Edward Einhorn, playwright and artisticwonder if I am at the right place. But no, around the director of New York’s “Untitled Theatre Company #61,”corner of the building, a more modest sign is hung by down for the weekend to lend his insights. He’s a pleasantthe door: “Project Playwright”. It is this that has brought fellow, active in children’s and Jewish theatre, as well asme down to the West Bottoms on a balmy Saturday being the driving force behind the yearly Ionesco festival.night. The parking lot is beginning to fill up already, I make a note to talk to him after the taping.and a few people are standing outside, catching the last The three of us are placed at a table in front of therays of dying sunshine before the show begins. audience, overlooking the black-curtained area that David Hanson breaks off from the group, hurries serves as a simple performance space. Tonight, the stageforward to shake my hand. “We’re just up the stairs,” is set with some airline seats the photography studiohe says, guiding me and a few others up a darkened uses for advertising shots. Behind us, the audience seatsstairwell, past a headless mannequin and gradually fill with excited playgoers: someinto a wide open space. During the week, to root for a particular playwright, otherswe are told, it is a working photo studio; Playwrights just here for the show. Behind the stage areabut for the next two weekends it will be Peter Bakely in the makeshift green-room-cum-dormi-the temporary home of what may well be Bryan Colley tory, final preparations are being made.Kansas City’s first homegrown reality show. Allie Jordan During the weekend, the playwrights live The brainchild of Hanson and Erich Michael Ruth and work in this area, but now it’s full ofMcGrew, the show takes the classic “talent Vicky Vodrey actors and directors doing the last minuteshow” format and brings it into the theatre prep that always comes before curtain-rise.world. Five local playwrights have been Directors All around us, serious-minded studentsselected: over the next two weeks, they will Victor Hentzen with black shirts and expensive camerasproduce plays to order, with stringent condi- Liz Nelson check and double check their equipment.tions and a merciless deadline. And then, one And then, the show begins. Jill Szooby one, each play will be given its premiere David steps out on stage, welcoming theperformance before a live audience and a Winner audience and getting straight into the rules.panel of judges. Which is where I come in. Bryan Colley Five playwrights have been chosen: for each “It’s kind of like American Idol, X-Factor, of four nights, three of them will competethat sort of thing.” It’s two months earlier, for a spot in the fourth and final round.and I’m sitting in an Indian restaurant with Twenty-four hours previously, they wereDavid. He’s been in touch with KC Stage, wanting some- each given an assignment for a ten-minute play. Theyone with a critic’s perspective on the judging panel. A had twelve hours to finish the script, and the actors andquick flurry of e-mails has resulted in this meeting in directors had twelve hours to put a production together.which he explains the details. “All you have to do is Sound and light cues are sparse, props and stagecraftshow up, watch the plays, talk a little about what you minimal. There are no catchy songs to save them, noliked and didn’t like about them. Sound fun?” Indeed elaborate sets, no falling chandeliers. This is storytell-it does. And so, on a balmy spring night with precision ing at its purist. And we are here to watch it happen.chaos all around me, we prepare for the show. The first round is titled “Farce at 24,000 Feet”. The As zero hour approaches, David introduces me to my playwrights are given three actors in four airline seats.fellow judges: Bob Paisley, actor, director, co-founder of They must create a play that follows the rules of farcethe Metropolitan Ensemble Theatre. He’s just returned in the space of ten minutes. And since this is apparentlyto town from Australia, where he went to escape what not brutal enough, a final condition has been added: eachturned out to be the mildest winter in years. Still, he found character must change seats no less than three times,14 KCSTAGE “If there is a gun hanging on the wall in the first act, it must fire in the last.” ~ Anton Chekhov