A New Play Spring

In addition to the Humana Festival of New American Plays in March, Actors Theatre has a bevy of homegrown projects that will be premiering in the spring. After a week of sleet, snow and rain, spring may seem far away, but these new play projects have been in the works for many months.

mbdJanuary will start off with Match Games, directed by former Actors Theatre Literary Manager and Associate Director Michael Bigelow Dixon, and curated by Dixon and current Literary Manager Amy Wegener from the best of over 25,000 entries to the National Ten-Minute Plays Festival over its 20 year history.

Michael describes the evening of short plays about love and romance as “a funhouse ride through romance and love via ten different situations. It’s like an amusement park, with lots of short rides and surprises in one lively outing. The journey begins with romantic interest, proceeds through aspects of dating and courtship, celebrates marriage, and delves into the lifelong repercussions of love and romantic passion.”

During the first rehearsal last week, we learned that there will be a bee with a magical stinger, and perhaps even a waitress on rollerblades.
Learn More at ActorsTheatre.org, including a Curatorial Conversation.

photo3At the end of January comes Rock & Roll: The Reunion Tour, a made from scratch world premiere exploring the question “What is Rock & Roll?” Ingredients came from stories of dozens of contributors and some of the most iconic music legends of the twentieth century, distilled into a rock fantasia on the never-ending process of growing up.

The creators are Actors Theatre staff (Associate Artistic Director Sean Daniels, Resident Sound Designer Matt Callahan, Resident Dramaturg Julie Felise Dubiner) and returning actor David Hanbury.

It’s been a long and wild ride for these co-creators, starting way back in the fall of 2007 when David was at Actors playing Hedwig in Hedwig and the Angry Inch.

photo5After a workshop this fall, the project began to take shape and now, after lengthy red tape battles, we have a preliminary idea of what music we can include, among which will be music by Love & Rockets, Heart, Earl King, Andy Partridge – XTC, The Clash, Henry Rollins, Iggy Pop, The Platters, Ike Turner, Alice Cooper, The Rolling Stones, Elvis Presley, Bruce Springstein, Pink Floyd and Jefferson Airplane. You can also follow the show on Sean’s blog.

0809_wendellberry2Wild Blessings: A Celebration of Wendell Berry, part of the Humana Festival this year, is a special project created by Artistic Director Marc Masterson and Director of New Play Development Adrien-Alice Hansel, based on the writings of Kentucky’s own poet laureate and sustainable farming advocate Wendell Berry. A fall workshop reading of the developing script reveals the show to be a heart-stoppingly beautiful blend of Wendell Berry’s poetry with some absolutely lovely original music. We’ll keep you posted as the show develops. It’s definitely going to be the kind of show that makes you proud to live in Kentucky.


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