Sunday, February 26, 2006

opening-weekend review of *Cat on a Hot Tin Roof*

through March 11 at Spokane Civic Theatre

A world with no lying and no selfishness — too bad it’s not our world. But that’s the dream of *Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.* Tennessee Williams intends to slice through the lies that infect us the same way a surgeon would cut out the cancer in Big Daddy Pollitt’s boastful belly. His play even acknowledges that truth can be built on lies. But we have to scramble through the lies and get to the truth, at whatever cost.

Fresh off its 50th anniversary, *Cat* underlines its symbolic beds and crutches repeatedly, fearful that we might not catch its point. Which would be tedious — except that the smell of mendacity still hovers around us, fouling our lives. Williams took on capital-letter Life and Death in this drama, his finest achievement, and director Jessica McLaughlin’s cast at the Civic (through March 11) responds with a very good production indeed.

While the major roles are all played well, the big star here is McLaughlin’s direction. She adds interpretations that reinforce meaning throughout. When repressed, alcoholic Brick (Damon C. Mentzer) first hears that his Big Daddy is dying, he hides his head under a towel — an ostrich in denial, at a moment when even whiskey doesn’t offer enough relief. Twice, Brick’s pillow is gently emphasized — very much in keeping with Williams’ use of symbols. Maggie the Cat (Chasity Kohlman) relates the story of her impoverished childhood — she had hardly anything to wear — even as she puts on a flouncy scarlet dress, transforming herself into the desperate seductress she needs to be. After the long and private conversation of Act One, in which both Kohlman and Mentzer are masterful — McLaughlin starts both the second and third acts with well-managed explosions of activity. She elicits emotional impact from the way both Kohlman and, later, Lauren Bathurst as Big Daddy slowly, tenderly try to touch Brick’s shoulder. McLaughlin employs Elia Kazan’s trick of presentational soliloquies, with Maggie and Big Daddy especially often delivering speeches right at the audience as if directing their accusations right at us.
McLaughlin makes some missteps — the father-son confrontation in Act Two drags, and she allows Caryn Hoaglund’s sister-in-law to overact her false pleasantries — but McLaughlin generally coordinates everything from Peter Hardie’s set (Mississippi Delta elegance) to his lighting design (dust specks caught in the shutters’ shadows) to the antics of Gooper and Mae’s no-neck monsters.

Maggie’s is the title role because *Cat* is about her stratagems for survival in the face of relatives who don’t trust her and a husband who’s disgusted by her. The play hinges on the credibility of her desperation. Especially in Act One, Kohlman revealed how much of Maggie’s rage to survive depends on her ability to play-act. She introduces and mocks the other characters for Brick’s benefit, hinting at the ability for improvisation needed by any cat with overheated paws. Kohlman physicalizes the role well, joining her hands in a pleading gesture, arching her eyebrows in derision, writhing seductively from across the room — anything to get Brick’s cooperation in her survival plan. She’s less effective, however, when Maggie is at her most angry and desperate. Exchanges about Brick’s “godlike” status and the whole tragic story of Brick’s repressed passion for another man veered too close to melodrama. But those were relatively small weaknesses in a Kohlman’s lively characterization of Maggie.

Bathurst’s rendition of the plantation patriarch does the reverse: less convincing in storytelling mode, but powerful in the father’s desperate outreach to his son. Both Brick and Big Daddy have become so cynical and disillusioned that they laugh at the notion that their wives might actually love them. (“Wouldn’t it be funny if that was true?” they both ask, though McLaughlin, using Williams’ most optimistic conclusion, cuts Brick’s echo of his father’s line). Bathurst, a Big Daddy less portly and more upright than most, gets mileage out of pushing and forcing his son toward the truth. Bathurst confronts the sobering truth about Big Daddy’s mortality with a slight stagger, stoic resignation and a noble exit.

Playing a drunk with a crutch, Mentzer is most notable for when and how he chooses to break out of Brick’s alcoholic denial. He can be brutal, capping one of his wife’s tirades with “Did you say something to me, Maggie?” And he can be surprising, laughing at others’ cruel jokes, contributing outbursts just when you’d forgotten he was still over there on the balcony, nursing his highball. Brick wanted to love Skipper physically and couldn’t, doesn’t want to love Maggie in that same way and forces himself (in the optimistic script used here) to consider contemplating it anyway. Mentzer makes him brick-like, impervious, just as he should.

Maggie, of course, insists at scraping out the mortar beneath him and all around him. McLaughlin’s production at the Civic emphasizes how Big Daddy, working separately, joins her in the project. Piercing through denial, discarding the little lies we tell ourselves, destroying mendacity — Williams’ project in *Cat* should become our own. Things are heating up, we’re all anxious — and reaching for another drink is not going to solve our problems.

For a revised version of this review with comments on Jean Hardie's performance as Big Mama, please pick up a copy of the March 2 *Inlander.*

Thursday, February 23, 2006

*The Comedy of Errors* at Gonzaga

Kevin Bradshaw directs; at Russell Theater, March 31-April 9
Tickets: $10; $8, G.U. faculty and staff; $6, students
March 31-April 1 and April 6-8 at 7:30 pm; April 9 at 2 pm
Tickets: 323-6553
Info: 323-3606

Steam Re-Heat

an encore of the fund-raiser at the Civic, directed by Troy Nickerson
Sunday, Feb. 26, at 7 pm $25 Call 325-2507

The Body-Image Show

*Mirror, Mirror: The Body-Image Show*
a 45-minute show, updated for 2006, developed by Whitworth students through interviews and research, focusing on how peers, parents and the media shape our notions of body image
Thursday-Saturday, March 9-11, at 8 pm, and Saturday, March 11, at 2 pm
Whitworth College, Cowles Auditorium
Tickets: $5
777-3707 or 777-3280

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

Big Daddy vs. Brick
Lauren Bathurst and Damon C. Mentzer

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

Chasity Kohlman as Margaret
That's one very symbolic bed, folks.

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

Bobo is not the only one to have worn white silk jammies!

Spokane Civic Theatre
Feb. 24-March 11, 2006

Lauren Bathurst as Big Daddy Pollitt
Damon Mentzer as Brick

*Macbeth* at Panida, March 8

The Acting Company, founded by John Houseman in 1972, is touring its version of the Scottish play to the Panida in Sandpoint on Tuesday, March 8, at 7:30 pm. $22; $8.50, 18 and younger Visit or call (208) 263-9191

DNA Festival at UI

2006 DNA Festival of Very,Very,Very Short Plays and Films
Wed.-Sunday, March 1-5, at 7:30 pm at UI's Kiva Theater in Moscow, Idaho
$10; $8, seniors; $5 for UI and WSU-affiliated folks and students and kids

21 one-page plays over five nights

Visit or call (208) 885-7212

If a New York actor does a gig in Spokane ...

... is there a detectable sound?
Well, yeah, at least hereabouts.
Michael Weaver reports that, helped by his connections with Tralen Doler and others, he's venturing to NYC next week to catch some shows and audition actors (three minutes at a time for 11 hours) for ARt's 2006-07 season. He was advised to include two phrases in his *Backstage* ad: "salary and housing" and "Patty Duke." (After all, ARt has only announced the one show for next year.)
The results? Three hundred phone calls and 400 e-mails.
Spokane as completely uninteresting theatrical backwater? Not entirely.

Patriot Acts

Patriot Acts: The Bill of Rights Theater Project
Thursday, Feb. 23, noon-2 pm, Showalter Hall, EWU in Cheney, free
The ACLU and G.A.P. Theater team up to present a series of skits on concerns about civil liberties since 9/11.
Call 359-4274 or 358-2080 or 359-2898 or [206] 624-2184.

Friday, February 17, 2006

20 Questions (and more) with Kathie Doyle-Lipe

Kathie Doyle-Lipe graduated from Shadle Park High in 1970 ("yeah, I'm old"), has worked for State Farm Insurance since '79, and has lived in the Gleneden area (north of Wandermere Golf Course) since '89 (the same year she married Terry). Kathie has two step-grandchildren and two grandkids by birth (with a third due at the end of April).

First time in Spokane onstage?
At the age of 4, my cousin's dance teacher saw me bouncing around as I watched my cousin’s classes. She decided to put me in the recital — put me in a bunny costume (not the Playboy type, the Easter type), and had me sing and dance to “Here Comes Peter Cottontail." I still remember the dance (hop, 2, 3, 4 – wiggle 2,3,4) and I still have the costume!

First show at Civic?
The Civic’s first production of *Grease,* directed by Jean Hardie – my mentor! I played Patty the cheerleader. I was in my 30s with a bunch of college kids. They had great swimming parties during the day — I sold insurance to feed the kids!! I hadn’t done any theater in high school or college — I was a dancer and gymnast. I took adult dance classes from Carol Woodbury and she talked me into auditioning. Been hooked ever since!!

Your first tap dance class?
Actual lessons began in first grade, at a theater that doesn’t exist anymore called Peggy Rene’s Studio of Dance. Peggy taught tap, ballet and jazz; her husband, Rene (from the Basque region of Spain) had danced with Jose Greco and taught Flamenco.

What are your next couple of local theater projects?
There is the encore performance of *Steam Heat* the end of this month. Then *Stepping Out* at InterPlayers. There's talk of directing something at Civic next year, but I haven’t committed to that yet. This spring and summer ... I have to stay away from any commitments until I see how my daughter is doing.

So much for preliminaries ... on to the 20 Questions ...

1. What's the longest (or most difficult) book you've ever read? What are you currently reading?
Either Stephen King's *The Stand* or “Gone With the Wind” — I’m not sure which one is longer. I am currently reading *A Million Little Pieces* — had borrowed it from my daughter and forgotten about it, but the Oprah incident reignited my interest.

2. Describe the first time you realized that not everybody is crazy about theater.
Probably during my second show at Civic. *Grease* was great fun — it was during the summer. We had great promotions — a Pepsi truck around most nights, dancing outside and mostly full houses. I was so excited and wrapped up in it all, it was like a whirlwind. I thought the whole community was there. The second show had rather poor attendance — the theater seemed dead. When I’d talk to people about it, they had the audacity to ask – “You’re doing what? The Civic? What’s the Civic?” It was an eye-opener.

3. Who deserves to be on a new U.S. postage stamp?
Harry Connick Jr. I always liked him before — but he was/is incredibly compassionate about the disaster brought about by Hurricane Katrina.

4. What's your best idea for getting more people to attend theater?
That’s tough. I don’t remember seeing theater as a kid — maybe one children’s theater production my brother was in. I do remember seeing a short play with my kids that they (the now defunct Heritage Family Theatre) brought to their grade school. People seemed interested, and many of us took information about upcoming performances. I have performed outside of theatres — at parks, wineries, and events like First Night. It often seems to be the first time some people have seen “live” theater, and many of them act like it won’t be the last. Bringing the theater to the people might help, but it is obvious in our own theater community right now that we are all trying to solve that problem.

5. How has being in theater helped you in the insurance business and vice versa?
It has helped my clientele grow. Many of them, even non-theatergoers, seem to like seeing my name or picture in the paper. It started with theatre friends buying insurance from me — then came the theater employees, and now I get a few people a year who come to me just because they’ve seen something I’ve done and know I sell insurance. It’s kinda cool!!

6. What color clothing do you never wear?
Pale yellow — actually pretty much any shade of yellow. So why I have bright yellow heels in my shoe closet is beyond me!! Maybe for some costume?

7. What's a bad habit you're trying to break?
Socially, I am working on becoming a better listener. I often have so much going on in my head, I feel like I’m hearing what they are saying, but processing what I’m worried about — especially in the arts, as in when I’m directing. Health-wise, I am an off-again, on-again smoker, depending on my stress level and whether or not I’m doing a musical. That’s gotta go — I have grandkids!!!

8. How often do theatergoers approach you on the street?
Probably a couple times a month — they sometimes drop by my office to say “hi." The most memorable was during *Chorus Line* (at Civic). I was with my manager (for insurance) in an elevator, heading to a meeting. This guy got on and said, “I know you — I’m sure of it.” We all stood silent for a moment, the elevator stopped and the gentleman stepped out. As the door began to close so we could continue up, the guy yelled out, – “Oh, wow – you’re tits and ass!" My manager wasn’t amused, and I was terribly embarrassed.

9. Biggest snafu (dropped lines, costume screw-up, malfunctioning prop) that you personally were involved in or witnessed?
Well ... until the broken bone last fall (no pun intended) it would be during “Angry Housewives” in the Firth Chew Studio. I was playing Jetta, and there is a scene where the girls are discussing how to handle children. Jetta’s little joke was pretending to draw a gun and say “OK, baby, drop ‘em," meaning the baby' diapers. Anyway, I had on a one-piece jump suit, with pockets that were quite tight. So as not to have “panty lines,” I was dressed fairly scantily underneath. I went to “draw my gun," caught my finger in my pocket and ripped the side seam of the jumpsuit from my waist to my knees. Thank God for Martha Lou Wheatley-Billiter’s (sp.?) quick thinking. Without missing a beat, she took off her jacket and tied it around my waist. I love you, Martha Lou!!!

10. What great tragic role for a woman would you like to have played or still hope to perform someday?
We all know that “tragic” women are not typically what I play. I have tried for a few, but this type-casting thing is hard to break (but I do LOVE comedy!) I am probably too old now, but the role of Bella in *Lost in Yonkers* is one that touches me, and one of the most coveted roles in theater for women. And the professor, Dr. Vivian Dearing, in *Wit.* Well, I can dream, can’t I? Shakespeare? No way — it scares me to death!!

11. Puppies or kittens?
Puppies: We currently have a chocolate chow, Coco and a fawn pug, Lucy.

12. What does the typical non-theatergoer not understand about theater?
The natural “high” one gets from doing theater and how and why we talk about the show for hours on end: what happened at that night’s performance, the audience reaction, the line you finally got right, the timing you’re still searching to find. My husband, Terry, God bless him, goes nuts at theater parties (understandably) and is always relieved if he finds another “non-theater” spouse to talk to.

13. When guests drop by on short notice, which room in your house do you designate as out-of-bounds?
That would be which rooms are “guest ready?” Usually my kitchen is in good shape (if you can get past the wall where we tore down the yellow, lime green, and orange flowered wallpaper). Then there is a dining room that’s never touched (but who wants to visit there?) and a living room that is generally quite nice. Our family room often has laundry to be folded, Terry’s work stuff (boxes and boxes), and a couch that has certainly seen better days. My bedroom has clothes all over — unless it’s the weekend — and our office looks like a bomb exploded in it.

14. If you could relive just one moment in your theatrical experience (whether as performer, director or audience member), what would you choose?
The reaction to the crowd, judges and crew from the host theater when they saw the production of Spokane Children’s Theatre’s production of *Pinocchio* at the national competition in Harrisburg, Pa. As the director, I was so proud of the impression the cast (mostly children) made — not only with their performance, but their professionalism throughout the rather high-stress situation. Few children’s shows have competed on the national level, and they were all very apprehensive with having to deal with such a young cast. They were all singing a different tune by the end of competition. That cast and crew of *Pinocchio* were amazing. It was a magical experience!!

15. Before I die, the place I want to revisit (or visit for the first time) is ...
... London – I’ve never been to Europe, plus they have awesome theatre and speak English!

16. Before I die, what I want to do in theater is ....
... a “serious” role. The thought of it scares me a bit, but I do believe I could pull it off.

17. Actor or actress, stage or screen, whose work you are amazed by?
Lucille Ball was incredible — she’s my mentor, but I have always thought Meryl Streep was amazing.

18. It's not theater unless ...
... as an audience member, you are transported to their world; as a director, you get teary on opening night; as a performer, you keep learning and growing from each and every show.

19. Name the Ten Commandments.
(In fairness to Kathie, readers are hereby instructed to cover the screen and see how well THEY do in naming all 10 before popping off ... oops, I think I just committed the sin of pride or being an insufferable jerk or something ...)

Kathie's answer:
Oh, wow. Thou shalt not steal. Thou shalt not commit adultery. Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's ... something. Thy neighbor's wife! [pause] Thou shalt not kill. Thou shalt not put gods before me. [pause]
(That's five of them.)
Wow, I’m half Christian! (laughs) Something about jealousy ...
(That's covet thy neighbor's wife.)
Are there two covets? Oh, honor thy father and mother ...
(And there's covet thy neighbor's goods, name in vain, honor the Sabbath, don't bear false witness or lie ... )

20. Let's do some word associations, Kathie!
the DMV tickets
the SAT hard
Mel Gibson oh my … Passion of Christ
Anne Bancroft wicked
ice hockey rough
ballet beautiful
chocolate fudge delicious
broccoli good for me Four or five times.
New York City overwhelming
Ritzville Podunk (laughs)

Thursday, February 16, 2006

the rest of Interplayers' season

Executive Director Mary Ann McCurdy has confirmed that Neil Simon's *Laughter on the 23rd Floor* (April 27-May 20; last produced at Interplayers in spring '96) and the stage version of John Steinbeck's *Of Mice and Men* (June 1-24) will follow the previously announced *Stepping Out* (March 9-April 1) as the rest of the Howard Street theater's season.

Asked about Troy Nickerson's involvement as director of *Stepping Out* and the eventuality of Wes Dietrick's directing *Laughter,* McCurdy responded by saying that "exact titles have yet to be worked out, but I'm sure they will be involved in some way" — which _seems_ to be a cryptic reference to the future of artistic leadership at Interplayers.

McCurdy would "neither confirm nor deny" that a member or members of the Interplayers board has/have purchased the theater's building so as to lease it back to the theater at a favorable rate, but says that "a blockbuster announcement" will follow in "about two months" as to Interplayers' financial situation.

Is Interplayers planning on hiring an artistic director? "We'll see," says McCurdy. "Even if no hire is made for that position, I can only say that we are relying on the expertise of several exceptionally talented local people, and we'll see how that unfolds. Our goal is to make that hire eventually rather than much later."

Originally, the final three slots in the Interplayers season were to be filled by an edgy Beth Henley comedy, a Nike Imoru/Eckart Preu collaboration and a Shakespearean tragedy. The highbrow stuff has fallen off its pedestal.

Singing Waiters Wanted

Starting in March, you can sing standards, Broadway, jazz, light opera, comic and character songs as you serve the filet mignon at dinner and collect big tips. A half-dozen performers needed to croon in a 1908 Kirtland Cutter mansion.

Contact Shawn Nichols — Delaney's Musicafe at Hannah's Garden Inn, 820 W. Seventh Ave., 747-6235,

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

The *Story* Not Told

Instead of *The Philadelphia Story* (as previously announced), Spokane Civic Theatre will instead produce Noel Coward's *Private Lives* in the March 31-April 23 slot. Trevor Rawlins will direct.
The change was made "due to casting challenges."
New auditions Thursday-Friday, Feb. 16-17, at 7 pm at the Civic.

Weaving Our Sisters' Voices

Wednesday, March 1, from 8-9 pm at Whitworth's Weyerhaeuser Hall (700 W. Hawthorne Rd.; near the northwest corner of campus). Free. Call 777-3707.

Story and dance are used to depict the lives of Vashti, Jochebed, Miriam and 10 other biblical-era women, both named and unnamed.

written by Linda Schearing of Gonzaga's religious studies department
music composed by Robert Spittal, chair of Gonzaga's music department
performed by Gonzaga students
directed and choreographed by Suzanne Ostersmith, who directs the dance minors at both Gonzaga and Whitworth

There will be other area performances as well this spring.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

dramatic readings in Sampler Concert

Friday, March 3, at 7:30 pm at St. John's Cathedral, 12th Ave. and Grand Blvd.
$17.50; $20, at the door; $10, students
silent auction at 6:15 pm

Ann Russell Whiteman will represent Interplayers by doing selected readings from works in the public domain.

A quintet of SJO members will perform music of Porter, Berlin, Miles, Dizzy and Trane.

Holy Names Music Center will present chamber music of Grieg, Bernstein and Milhaud.

Spokane/CdA Opera will present five singers and Greg Presley as piano accompanist in music of Offenbach, Mozart and Verdi.

Ken Pickering at Gonzaga

Ken Pickering of London's Institute for Arts and Trinity College will be a visiting scholar, teach a seminar on leadership and imagination and direct a readers theater production of T.S. Eliot's *Murder in the Cathedral* at Gonzaga during his residency there March 20-April 1.
Pickering directed *Medieval Mysteries* at Gonzaga and *As You Like It* at Spokane Civic Theatre in the mid-'90s.
Contact John Caputo at 323-6656 or

Monday, February 13, 2006

Life 101 cast list

LIFE 101: A New Musical
March 10-April 1 at the Civic's Firth J. Chew Studio Theatre

Music by Donovan Stohlberg
Lyrics by LB Hamilton
Book by Donovan Stohlberg and Yvonne A.K. Johnson
Directed by Yvonne A.K. Johnson

Tickets: $16. Call 325-2507.

Anything could happen, and probably will, when a professor with a hidden agenda and an unlikely mix of seven American university students discover that neither life, nor a study abroad course innocently titled, “LIFE 101: Spring in London” are quite as simple as they seem.

James Rickman -- Douglas Vinson
Emily Frederick -- Kendra Kimball
Professor Ryan -- Tony Caprile
Slash -- Charles Ivan Gift
Michelle LaPorte -- Maureen Krels
Josh Nelson -- Jimmy James Pendleton
Timothy Mensing -- David Hardie
Constance Willowflower -- Kelly Carnahan

*The Sisters Rosensweig* auditions, Feb. 15

Reading Stage at Spokane Civic Theatre, 1020 N. Howard St.
directed by Maria Caprile
Wednesday, Feb. 15, at 7 pm
Cold readings
Several rehearsals before the sole performance on Sunday, March 12, at 7 pm

Three American sisters meet in London to celebrate Sarah’s 54th birthday. She is the business woman who had given up on love when uninvited birthday guests change her perceptions. A touching and hilarious play written by Wendy Wasserstein, who recently died of cancer.

Call 325-1413.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

*Words* at UI's Kiva Theater, Feb. 15-19

A world premiere, written by James D. Clayton and directed by Sharon Trautwein

Can a lesbian also be a woman of faith, even when her religious community considers her sexuality an abomination?
Can devout people accept and even nurture someone whose actions are repugnant to them? Can a gay play avoid being anti-religious? Can those who chant "condemn the sin, not the sinner" consider redefining their idea of what's sinful and what isn't? Can gay people rid themselves of the Christian = homophobe equation?

Wednesday-Saturday, Feb. 15-18, at 7:30 pm; and Sunday, Feb. 19, at 2 pm
Tickets: $10; $8, seniors; $5, children, students, and WSU and UI staff and faculty
Call (208) 885-7212.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Stepping Out at Interplayers, March 9-April 1

Richard Harris' 1984 comic musical play will be directed by Troy Nickerson and co-choreographed by him along with Kathie Doyle-Lipe and Greg Pschirrer.

This show replaces *The Miss Firecracker Contest,* previously announced.

*Stepping Out* was made into a 1991 movie starring Liza Minnelli. (They "opened it up" and transferred the location from North London to Buffalo, N.Y. -- the movie also featured Shelley Winters, Julie Walters, Bill Irwin and Jane Krakowski.)

"Stepping Out* has been described as "a blue-haired version of *A Chorus Line.*" It's about an ex-professional dancer, Mavis Turner (to be played by Danae Lowman, who was so good as Louise in the Civic's *Gypsy* with Patty Duke, and who also appeared in *Suds* at CenterStage), who agrees to teach a weekly tap dance class to a bunch of amateurs. (They're getting ready for a big recital and charity show, part of which we get to see at the conclusion.)

Doyle-Lipe will play Vera, an English lady who's obsessed with cleaning; Pschirrer plays a shy widower; Angela Snyder will be a nurse; Evelyn Renshaw, a bossy old lady; Becky Moonitz, the accompanist with a grudge; Carolee Young and Lei Broadstone will also appear (as Dorothy and Maxine, respectively).

Nickerson sees *Stepping Out* as a good project for a theater that needs to sell some tickets. "It's not a musical, but it has the excitement of a musical," he says. "And it has some meat to it." They'll be plenty of tap dance along the way (recalling how good Nickerson and Doyle-Lipe were as a tap dancing pair in the Interplayers fund-raiser show last August).

"It's truly about the relationships among all these quirky people -- how they grow together and fall apart. It ends in a big, huge, splashy production number."

Asked if Interplayers approached him and other local directors to pitch shows that they'd like to direct for the rest of this season, Nickerson said, "That's pretty much how it happened."

Other Interplayers news: As a fund-raiser for the theater and other nonprofits, David Casteal will encore his one-man Lewis and Clark show, *York,* at Interplayers on Friday, Feb. 24, at 8 pm. Tickets: $25; $15, students and seniors.

Visit or call 455-PLAY.

Durang's Baby With the Bathwater at NIC

Feb. 16-18 and Feb. 23-25 at 7:30 pm
Schuler Auditorium, inside Boswell Hall, 1000 W. Garden Ave., CdA
intended for mature audiences
Call (208) 769-3220
directed by Daniel Edmiston

Christopher Durang's dark and absurdist play is about the neuroses of parents and children. But it ends on a hopeful note, says NIC theater instructor Joe Jacoby: “Hang on tight, because you’ll be going for a wild ride. The play pulls no punches, but is very funny and has something constructive to offer that shines through the darkness.”

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Ros and Guil meet Irma Vep?

Micki Panttaja, marketing director for U of Idaho Theater, reports that her husband Dean, professor of lighting and production manager in the UI Theater Dept. and former tech director for Interplayers, will spend the month of April designing the set and lights for a production of Tom Stoppard's *Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead.* So?
So this show will be at the Univ. of Cairo. As in Egypt.
Could you try a softer gel on the Sphinx, Dean? That desert lighting can be so harsh.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Wendy Wasserstein, dead at 55

She'd been hospitalized with lymphoma for the past month.
A sad coda to the final scene of *The Heidi Chronicles*: Wasserstein is survived by her 6-year-old daughter.

Spokane productions:

Jan. 1993, The Heidi Chronicles, with Ron Varela (now, sadly, also gone), Mary Starkey -- and wasn't Troy Nickerson in that show, too?

Summer '93, Civic, Uncommon Women and Others Bobo didn't see this show, but did see a good student production of Uncommon Women, done in the round at EWU circa '97 (?)

Interplayers did The Sisters Rosensweig in May '96

I organized a play reading in my neighborhood of *An American Daughter* back in '97 or so.

And I'm probably forgetting other local productions -- sorry. Please write with details and memories.

I love "Heidi,* and I remember being so happy when WW won the Pulitzer - the third woman to do so in the '80s. But then women didn't win again until (three more of them) in '98-2002. (God, this is turning into a trivia contest. I had to look that last part up.)

Anyway, she will be missed. Very funny, very full of life, and -- this part is scary -- only 5 years older than me.
Very sad. I hope her daughter will be OK.

Idaho Rep auditions March 4 and '06 season

but you must apply by Feb. 20 ...

The Idaho Repertory Theatre regional auditions
by invitation only
Saturday, March 4
at the University of Idaho Hartung Theatre in Moscow, Idaho

Just wondering: Does the coincidence of the March 4 audition date mean that singers, dancers and actors around here have to choose between working for IRT or for CST?

Resumes, headshots and more information:
or send to
Idaho Repertory Theatre, ATTN: Audition
PO Box 443074
Moscow ID 83844-3074

Deadline: Monday, Feb. 20, 5 pm
Notified by Friday, Feb. 24

Idaho Rep 2006 season:
I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change
Lend Me A Tenor
Grace & Glorie
The Comedy of Errors

Coeur d'Alene Summer Theater directors for '06; auditions March 4

CdA Summer Theatre 2006

A CHORUS LINE (Michael Ericson, director./chor.; Deborah Hansen, musical director)
rehearsals start May 27, performances June 10-24

PETER PAN (Bob Sembiante, director.; chor. TBA; Kasey Graham, musical director)
July 1-15

PIPPIN (Roger Welch director/Artistic Director; Michael Ericson, chor.; Steven Dahlke, musical director)
July 20-30

THE KING AND I (Roger Welch, director/ Artistic Director; chor. TBA; Steven Dahlke, Musical Director)
Aug. 5-19

Auditions will be held Saturday, March 4, at North Idaho College, Boswell Hall, room 102, 1000 W. Garden Ave., CdA
Sign up at 10 AM. Prepare 16 bars of a song, a one-minute monologue and be prepared to dance.
Children's roles available.

Pix and resumes to:
Roger Welch
Producing Artistic Director
Coeur d'Alene Summer Theatre
PO Box 1119
Coeur d'Alene, Idaho

208 769-7780
Fax 208 769-7856