Monday, August 27, 2012

THE VIOLET HOUR • Max & Louie Productions

"It's that time -- that wonderful New York hour when the evening's about to reward you for that day".  This quote from one of the characters, Denis McCleary, is how he explains the title for his book, and serves as the title for Richard Greenberg's 2003 play, The Violet Hour.

It's 1919, and everything takes place within the tight, messy New York office of John Pace Seavering (Drew Pannebecker), a recent graduate and fledgling publisher, and his loyal but overwrought assistant, Gidger (Antonio Rodriguez).

Monday, August 20, 2012

Totally Random Birthday Marching Band Rambling!

My buddy Lisa and me,
pre- half-time show!
Nice pants, right?!
Okay so first of all, it's not really my birthday anymore, but close enough!
Birthdays facilitate things -- being thankful for your time on the planet, being thankful for your friends, family and "back-in-the-day" sentimentality.  This blog will center on that last one -- sentimentality. That means I'm gonna ramble a little bit.

I got a wild hair a few days ago and listened to a bunch of tunes on my ipod from when I was in college in the marching band. Long time ago. But I was a horn player in the "Mighty Sound of the South" -- the University of Memphis (back in the day, it was just Memphis State University) marching band -- 200+ players! Geek?  Yeah. But a way to gain a further appreciation of instrumental music in general? Hell. Yes.

While surfing the playlist, I was drawn to 1988, when the members of the MSofTS were given the sheet music for "Mambo" from West Side Story. So, in the spirit of sentimentality, here's a recording of that song, recorded by us college kids, in our sizable but acoustically unforgiving rehearsal space on campus.

Sunday, August 5, 2012


Welcome to Armadillo Acres Trailer Park, the redneck little homely haven where the action of The Great American Trailer Park Musical unfolds.  Stray Dog Theatre closes its ninth season with this 2005 off-Broadway show, and this production charms with a talented cast and solid creative contributions.

The cross-section of this Starke, Florida community is absolutely trashtastic!  You get an immediate sense of that when you lay your eyes on David Blake's scenic design as you walk in.  Several perfectly inelegant trailers are bookended by a variety of road signs -- signs that read everything from "State Prison Next Exit" to "Parkview Liquor and Groceries".  Our three members of the Greek chorus, "the Girls", Betty, proprietor of Armadillo Acres (Kim Furlow), "Lin", whose hubby is on death row (Kay Love), and Pickles, seventeen and pregnant (Jessica Tilghman), introduce themselves, their digs, and the happenings at the trailer park in their engaging opening number, "This Side of the Tracks".  These three also step into some supporting roles from time to time, vocally back up many of the numbers, and sound great together.