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.


At February 16, 2006 8:58 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Steinbeck is lowbrow and an orignal work which has yet to be read is highbrow? Critical aplomb at its most insightful! Who has fallen off of what pedastal, Bobo?

At February 17, 2006 3:31 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dearest Bobo - a comment for you from a first-timer:

Have you ever read or experienced a performance of "The Miss Firecracker Contest" by Beth Henley? Edgy is the last word I would use to describe this play. Amusing, cute, entertaining and at times contrived, this play ain't no "Crimes of the Heart." Edgy?? No.

And I am truthfully glad to see "Romeo and Juliet" fall by the wayside. I'm more in the mood for "Caligula" myself. Anyone?

At February 17, 2006 5:10 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ditto Troy. Well said. We are helping where we can to sustain a rich Spokane artisitic community.

At February 17, 2006 5:19 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Firecracker edgy?

At February 17, 2006 5:21 PM , Blogger Bobo the Theater Ho said...

Thanks, Troy, for the clarification. I asked Mary Ann who was going to direct *Laughter* and *Mice,* and, through a simple misunderstanding, she apparently started to answer a question about the future of the A.D. position at Interplayers. It was a miscommunication but a revealing moment (at least that's how I heard it).

Bobo was trying (too hard) to be clever with the *falling off their pedestals" line.

Somewhere in here, I passed along a comment criticizing me for calling *Firecracker Contest* "edgy." And that person is right. I've read *Firecracker* and seen the movie, but it's been years, and memory failed -- and they're right, it's no *Crimes of the Heart* (which, in the black comedy, laughing-at-death sense, is kind of edgy.

Anyway. Brows can't get raised any higher than Shakespeare -- and personally, I was looking forward to the Beth Henley and the R&J. And the Nike/Eckart collaboration, which died a-borning a long time ago anyway, could have been good or could have been poor.
I'm sort of responding to a post that's elsewhere, I guess, but I was trying to make a joke: maybe it's just as well those shows fell off the schedule. I hope Interplayers packs 'em in for *Stepping* and *Laughter* and *Mice,* because goodness knows Interplayers could use a financial shot in the arm.

At February 17, 2006 7:54 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interplayers needs to take a huge step back and decide what their mission statement is. Just throwing actors onstage at regular intervals and patting themselves on the back because they pay them isn't enough. It seems no one there has an artistic point of view, or vision for Interplayer's place in this artistic community. I think it's sad they're not bringing in outside people anymore, because we all need to see new approaches and styles. We need intellectual and artistic challenges. The theatre community here is small, and becoming insular. Actors are sitting back waiting to be asked instead of fighting for roles. Everyone's using (and over-using) the same directors. I know money is a consideration, but a "Hey guys, what shows do you wanna do?" season doesn't generate much excitement for me.

At February 17, 2006 8:48 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well said and clarified, Bobo.

Thank you.

At February 18, 2006 7:11 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bobo - any audition dates announced for the up-coming productions?

At February 19, 2006 12:56 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

It sure seems that there's a body of people blabbing on this blog that want and hope for the failure or demise of Interplayers. I can't imagine those people would be the performers looking for work and venues to perform. Who could it be? Is it people who perceive that they were mistreated by Interplayers in the past? Competing theaters? As just an actor in the mix, I'm curious. Who would be so negative?

At February 21, 2006 10:39 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

There are some very good directors in this town that unforunately we might only see direct maybe once a year or every couple of years.Interplayers needs to reach out to them.Ask the actors they will tell you who they are.These few might be persuaded to do more if asked.Interplayers get some more input outside of the circle.

At February 21, 2006 11:52 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cryptic message anonymous. Who? You have names?

At February 22, 2006 5:24 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not as many qualified directors as you might think.

At February 23, 2006 3:48 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Which directors would you like to see direct more?


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