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Company

Theaters, Actors, Etc.

By Rick Pender · March 22nd, 2006 · Curtain Call
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  Stephen Sondheim, whose Company is currently onstage at the Playhouse, recently spent a few days in the Tristate.
Brandon Vernon

Stephen Sondheim, whose Company is currently onstage at the Playhouse, recently spent a few days in the Tristate.



As the CINCINNATI PLAYHOUSE IN THE PARK prepared to open COMPANY (reviewed on page 38), Cincinnati was visited by STEPHEN SONDHEIM, the show's legendary composer-lyricist. With some generous funding from Playhouse supporter David Herriman, Sondheim slipped into town on the Tuesday before Company opened to do some watching and advising. (Herriman also made possible a visit by Company's book writer George Furth, who speaks at the Playhouse Sunday evening). He quietly left town Thursday morning, hours before the show's opening. Because I also edit The Sondheim Review, a quarterly magazine about him, Sondheim sat down with me for a radio interview, which WVXU (FM 91.7) will air on Sunday evening's Around Cincinnati (7-8 p.m.). While we drove to the studio, Sondheim -- on his first visit to Cincinnati -- said he was impressed with Playhouse's subscriber base, nearly 20,000 people. "That must be one of the largest in the country," he said. And he's right.

Those subscribers won't see any of Sondheim's shows next season, but Producing Artistic Direc tor Ed Stern has assembled a 2006-2007 SEASON for the Playhouse that offers several musicals, world premieres and plays by some of America's best contemporary playwrights. The Marx season opens with Of Mice and Men (Sept. 7-Oct. 6), based on John Steinbeck's classic novel.

As the CINCINNATI PLAYHOUSE IN THE PARK prepared to open COMPANY (reviewed on page 38), Cincinnati was visited by STEPHEN SONDHEIM, the show's legendary composer-lyricist. With some generous funding from Playhouse supporter David Herriman, Sondheim slipped into town on the Tuesday before Company opened to do some watching and advising. (Herriman also made possible a visit by Company's book writer George Furth, who speaks at the Playhouse Sunday evening). He quietly left town Thursday morning, hours before the show's opening. Because I also edit The Sondheim Review, a quarterly magazine about him, Sondheim sat down with me for a radio interview, which WVXU (FM 91.7) will air on Sunday evening's Around Cincinnati (7-8 p.m.). While we drove to the studio, Sondheim -- on his first visit to Cincinnati -- said he was impressed with Playhouse's subscriber base, nearly 20,000 people. "That must be one of the largest in the country," he said. And he's right. ...

Those subscribers won't see any of Sondheim's shows next season, but Producing Artistic Direc tor Ed Stern has assembled a 2006-2007 SEASON for the Playhouse that offers several musicals, world premieres and plays by some of America's best contemporary playwrights. The Marx season opens with Of Mice and Men (Sept. 7-Oct. 6), based on John Steinbeck's classic novel. It's followed by the 2006 winner of the Mickey Kaplan New American Play Prize, a world premiere musical by native Cincinnatian and CCM grad, Richard Oberacker (Oct. 19-Nov. 17). Ace is about a boy in the 1950s searching for a sense of family -- "Ace" is a fighter pilot he imagines as the captain of a model airplane. Early in 2007 the Playhouse presents Pure Confidence (Jan. 18-Feb. 16), about an African-American jockey in 19th-century America. I've seen this show twice -- at the 2005 Humana Festival of New American Plays in Louisville and at the Alabama Shakespeare Festival about six weeks ago; Carlyle Brown's fine script is a favorite in regional theaters next season, where it's getting several productions.

The Marx season continues with a dark comedy, Reckless by Craig Lucas (March 8-April 6), and a classic tale of detection, Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure (April 26-May 25). In the Shelterhouse, the Playhouse opens with In the Continuum (Oct. 5-29) as predicted in Curtain Call a few weeks back (issue of March 1-7). It features actresses Nikkole Salter and Danai Gurira in a script they created about two black women with HIV, one a teenaged African American, the other a newsreader for Zimbabwe Broadcasting. It's making a brief national tour, starting in Cincinnati. For the holidays, the Playhouse's smaller stage will present This Wonderful Life (Nov. 16-Dec. 23), a one-man adaptation of the Frank Capra's holiday film, It's A Wonderful Life. The Playhouse brings back playwright Carson Kreitzer (it staged her award-winning play The Love Song of J. Robert Oppenheimer back in 2003) with the world premiere of 1:23 (Feb. 8-March 4, 2007), and another award-winner, Jeffrey Hatcher, will be represented with his new play, Murderers (March 29-April 22). The season concludes with another story about the folks from Mount Pleasant Baptist Church, Smoke on the Mountain: Homecoming (May 10-June 24). Earlier tales of the Sanders family (by Alan Bailey, who will direct here again) have been sold-out hits for the Playhouse. Information: 513-421-3888 . ...

Second thoughts, perhaps? Following the opening of ENSEMBLE THEATRE's comedy, Moonlight and Magnolias, about writing the screenplay for Gone With The Wind, The Cincinnati Enquirer's Jackie Demaline criticized it, writing "The most depressing thing about Moonlight is that everything about it is terrific except the script." Even worse, the headline read "Frankly my dear, script not worth a ..."). A week later, the paper's Weekend section published an extended interview feature by David Lyman about playwright Ron Hutchinson. As my friend Kathy Y. Wilson says, "Things that make you go, 'Hmmm.' "



contact Rick Pender: rpender(at)
  Stephen Sondheim, whose Company is currently onstage at the Playhouse, recently spent a few days in the Tristate.
Brandon Vernon

Stephen Sondheim, whose Company is currently onstage at the Playhouse, recently spent a few days in the Tristate.



As the CINCINNATI PLAYHOUSE IN THE PARK prepared to open COMPANY (reviewed on page 38), Cincinnati was visited by STEPHEN SONDHEIM, the show's legendary composer-lyricist. With some generous funding from Playhouse supporter David Herriman, Sondheim slipped into town on the Tuesday before Company opened to do some watching and advising. (Herriman also made possible a visit by Company's book writer George Furth, who speaks at the Playhouse Sunday evening). He quietly left town Thursday morning, hours before the show's opening. Because I also edit The Sondheim Review, a quarterly magazine about him, Sondheim sat down with me for a radio interview, which WVXU (FM 91.7) will air on Sunday evening's Around Cincinnati (7-8 p.m.). While we drove to the studio, Sondheim -- on his first visit to Cincinnati -- said he was impressed with Playhouse's subscriber base, nearly 20,000 people. "That must be one of the largest in the country," he said. And he's right.

Those subscribers won't see any of Sondheim's shows next season, but Producing Artistic Direc tor Ed Stern has assembled a 2006-2007 SEASON for the Playhouse that offers several musicals, world premieres and plays by some of America's best contemporary playwrights. The Marx season opens with Of Mice and Men (Sept. 7-Oct. 6), based on John Steinbeck's classic novel.

As the CINCINNATI PLAYHOUSE IN THE PARK prepared to open COMPANY (reviewed on page 38), Cincinnati was visited by STEPHEN SONDHEIM, the show's legendary composer-lyricist. With some generous funding from Playhouse supporter David Herriman, Sondheim slipped into town on the Tuesday before Company opened to do some watching and advising. (Herriman also made possible a visit by Company's book writer George Furth, who speaks at the Playhouse Sunday evening). He quietly left town Thursday morning, hours before the show's opening. Because I also edit The Sondheim Review, a quarterly magazine about him, Sondheim sat down with me for a radio interview, which WVXU (FM 91.7) will air on Sunday evening's Around Cincinnati (7-8 p.m.). While we drove to the studio, Sondheim -- on his first visit to Cincinnati -- said he was impressed with Playhouse's subscriber base, nearly 20,000 people. "That must be one of the largest in the country," he said. And he's right. ...

Those subscribers won't see any of Sondheim's shows next season, but Producing Artistic Direc tor Ed Stern has assembled a 2006-2007 SEASON for the Playhouse that offers several musicals, world premieres and plays by some of America's best contemporary playwrights. The Marx season opens with Of Mice and Men (Sept. 7-Oct. 6), based on John Steinbeck's classic novel. It's followed by the 2006 winner of the Mickey Kaplan New American Play Prize, a world premiere musical by native Cincinnatian and CCM grad, Richard Oberacker (Oct. 19-Nov. 17). Ace is about a boy in the 1950s searching for a sense of family -- "Ace" is a fighter pilot he imagines as the captain of a model airplane. Early in 2007 the Playhouse presents Pure Confidence (Jan. 18-Feb. 16), about an African-American jockey in 19th-century America. I've seen this show twice -- at the 2005 Humana Festival of New American Plays in Louisville and at the Alabama Shakespeare Festival about six weeks ago; Carlyle Brown's fine script is a favorite in regional theaters next season, where it's getting several productions. The Marx season continues with a dark comedy, Reckless by Craig Lucas (March 8-April 6), and a classic tale of detection, Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure (April 26-May 25). In the Shelterhouse, the Playhouse opens with In the Continuum (Oct. 5-29) as predicted in Curtain Call a few weeks back (issue of March 1-7). It features actresses Nikkole Salter and Danai Gurira in a script they created about two black women with HIV, one a teenaged African American, the other a newsreader for Zimbabwe Broadcasting. It's making a brief national tour, starting in Cincinnati. For the holidays, the Playhouse's smaller stage will present This Wonderful Life (Nov. 16-Dec. 23), a one-man adaptation of the Frank Capra's holiday film, It's A Wonderful Life. The Playhouse brings back playwright Carson Kreitzer (it staged her award-winning play The Love Song of J. Robert Oppenheimer back in 2003) with the world premiere of 1:23 (Feb. 8-March 4, 2007), and another award-winner, Jeffrey Hatcher, will be represented with his new play, Murderers (March 29-April 22). The season concludes with another story about the folks from Mount Pleasant Baptist Church, Smoke on the Mountain: Homecoming (May 10-June 24). Earlier tales of the Sanders family (by Alan Bailey, who will direct here again) have been sold-out hits for the Playhouse. Information: 513-421-3888 . ...

Second thoughts, perhaps? Following the opening of ENSEMBLE THEATRE's comedy, Moonlight and Magnolias, about writing the screenplay for Gone With The Wind, The Cincinnati Enquirer's Jackie Demaline criticized it, writing "The most depressing thing about Moonlight is that everything about it is terrific except the script." Even worse, the headline read "Frankly my dear, script not worth a ..."). A week later, the paper's Weekend section published an extended interview feature by David Lyman about playwright Ron Hutchinson. As my friend Kathy Y. Wilson says, "Things that make you go, 'Hmmm.' "



contact Rick Pender: rpender(at)citybeat.com
 
 
 
 

 

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