Monday, August 27, 2012

mainstage season preview

Instead of thinking of this time of year as "back-to-school", we like to think of it as "back-to-the-stage." Instead of stocking up on pencils and binders, we're contracting designers, cleaning up the theatre, and scheduling rehearsals. You've already had some time to check out the season, but now I thought it would be nice to give you a bit of insight into why we at PT are excited about our mainstage season. (And yes, that does mean that a second stage season preview is coming later this week.)

music and lyrics by James Valq, book and lyrics by Fred Alley
a guest production by the Midnight Theatre Collective

THE STORY: A young woman leaves prison, only to learn that a second chance isn’t easy to come by. From the beloved film comes a powerful, uplifting musical about starting over.

WHY WE LOVE IT: It's a homey, down-to-earth bluegrass musical about starting over. The themes are right on the nose for PT, and it embodies a lovely simplicity and hopefulness. The producing team at the Midnight Theatre Collective are also some of our favourite people to work with.

WITTENBERG | Oct 31-Nov 10
by David Davalos

THE STORY: Dr. Faustus, Hamlet, and Martin Luther walk into a bar… and the rest is history. Sort of. An extended staged reading in the tradition of THE LAST DAYS OF JUDAS ISCARIOT.

WHY WE LOVE IT: This is a play full of ideas and witty humour (plus the occasional potty joke). The last "extended staged reading" we did was JUDAS with Marcus Youssef and Michael Kopsa facing off as a lawyer defending heaven and the Prince of Darkness himself. How cool will it be to have the two of them duke it out again, this time as Faust and Martin Luther?

adapted from the novel by C.S. Lewis

THE STORY: It's our signature take on this C.S. Lewis classic and, like Aslan, it’s on the move! Touring to the Kay Meek Centre, Presentation House, and the Evergreen Cultural Centre.

WHY WE LOVE IT: Honestly, this is just one of our favourite plays of all time - the story and the two-person adaptation are so full of magic, we can't resist it. And this year we're taking it on tour for the first time ever.

LEAVE OF ABSENCE |  Jan 25-Feb 16
by Lucia Frangione

THE STORY: One girl’s coming of age results in a terrible crime in this searing drama of bigotry and transcendence in a small prairie town. A complex look at sexuality, violence, religion, and a community’s responsibility to its youth.

WHY WE LOVE IT: A casual observer could probably see that Lucia is one of our favourite playwrights. We've been working with her to get this play on our stage for years now, and so it's been a long time coming. It's classic Lucia: lots of humour, smart dialogue, and a nail that pierces right into the darkest places of your heart.

by Helen Edmundson
a guest production by Compassionate Bone Theatre

THE STORY: A conscience-stricken mother abandons husband, son and comfortable London home – resurfacing among the street children of India’s slums. A gripping examination of privilege, spiritual sickness and uneasy sacrifice.

WHY WE LOVE IT: This play has been on the "Shows We NEED to Produce" shelf at PT for a long long time, but for various reasons it never quite got in. Helen Edmundson is a brilliant playwright: she takes the incredibly complex issue of international aid and brings it right into one family's story. Plus, this is the first major production for Compassionate Bone Theatre - a company made up of Angela Konrad, Evan Frayne, and Lois Dawson. Not bad at all.

By Bill Cain

THE STORY: Heartfelt and hilarious, the story of an aging mother’s peculiarities and a son’s flawed devotion. A celebration of what holds a family together, suffused with subtle theatrical magic.

WHY WE LOVE IT: This one came to PT after a few people (including our Production and Business Manager Frank Nickel) saw it in Seattle and came back saying "Ron, this play NEEDS to be on our stage." He read the script and agreed, simple as that.

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