November 8-24, 2019
A comedy by Neil Simon / Directed by Jerry Wiesenhahn
Part three of Neil Simon's acclaimed autobiographical trilogy finds Eugene and his older brother Stanley trying to break into the world of show business as professional comedy writers while coping with their parents break-up and eventual divorce. When their material is broadcast on the radio for the first time, the family is upset to hear a thinly-veiled portrait of themselves played for laughs.
Evelyn in Purgatory
January 10-26, 2020
A dark comedy by Topher Payne / Directed by Jennifer Keith
When a complaint is filed against one of the 70,000 teachers in New York’s public schools, they’re sent to a Reassignment Center, one of a series of empty offices in the Department of Education Building. There, they sit and wait for their case to be reviewed. Usually for months. Sometimes for over a year. A claim of improper behavior by a failing student lands Evelyn Reid in “the rubber room,” where she encounters a group of teachers, some guilty, some not, who have long since lost any hope of returning to a classroom. Over the course of the school year, these colleagues form an unlikely alliance, reminding each other of forgotten passions, emerging to face life outside in unexpected new directions. They also learn French and workshop a screenplay.
Earth and Sky
March 13-29, 2020
A thriller by Douglas Post / Directed by Jef Brown
Earth and Sky is a poetic thriller about a would-be poet and part-time librarian named Sara McKeon whose lover of ten weeks, David Ames, is found dead one hot August morning in the city of Chicago. It appears that David, owner and manager of an expensive art-deco restaurant, may have been involved in several illicit activities including kidnapping, rape and murder. Unable to believe that the man she gave her heart to was a killer, and outraged that the police seem to have closed the book on the case, Sara begins her own investigation of the crime and is led deeper and deeper through the urban labyrinth into the contemporary underworld. As the detective story moves forward in time, scenes from the love affair take us back to the moment when Sara and David first met. Finally the plots converge, and Sara finds herself face to face with the person who murdered her beloved.
The Art Of Dining
May 8-24, 2020
A comedy by Tina Howe / Directed by Laura Gossett
Cal and Ellen are the owners and sole staff of a small, elegant gourmet restaurant. Cal's main preoccupation is paying back the $75,000 it cost to start it up, and that means packing in the customers. Chef Ellen is preoccupied with the food's quality and stopping Cal from sampling the ingredients. The diners act out their own private dramas over dinner and their conversations are exquisite burlesques of contemporary attitudes. There's a sensual middle aged couple who go into paroxysms of ecstasy just reading the menu and then there's three crass chic young career women. Finally, there's Elizabeth, a maladroit, shy and neurotic writer who's dining with her prospective publisher. Her actions and conversation are unintentionally hilarious and a delicious example of how not to act and what not to talk about while dining.
Somewhere In Between
July 10-26, 2020
A romantic comedy by Craig Pospisil / Dirested by Dan Maloney
Told in ten scenes, the play begins in the dark, as Jasper confesses his feelings of isolation to the audience. But he becomes unnerved in the dark and calls for lights. In the first scene, Jasper is stuck between floors on an elevator with a claustrophobic man, who goes quickly and hilariously over the edge. At work, a sleazy coworker gives him farcical advice on how to pick up women, and that night Jasper goes to a bookstore and tries to pick up a pretty clerk, Holly. He strikes out badly, but is picked up by another woman, who takes him home…where she lives with her boyfriend. A ride on the subway turns into a comic free-for-all as he and other riders enthusiastically give advice to a lost tourist. Jasper crosses paths with Holly again at a party and gamely starts a conversation, hoping she won't recognize him, but she does and teases him flirtatiously. On their first date, Jasper and Holly go to a cozy restaurant for quiet conversation, but the couple seated on one side of them erupts in a battle of the sexes, while the couple on the other side engages in passionate verbal foreplay. Later, Jasper walks Holly home and their conversation seems mundane, but their fantasies about each other are anything but. A chance encounter with a homeless man forces Jasper to gain some perspective on his life. Back at work, Jasper snaps when a friend tells him Holly is dating someone else. He loses his cool, kicks a chair, breaks his foot, and gets fired. Feeling suddenly liberated, he hobbles to Holly's bookstore and asks her if she is seeing someone else. She isn't. They kiss—and leave immediately for the hospital. In the end, Jasper briefly talks to the audience again, understanding he must accept life's uncertainties, which aren't all bad, and make the best of things.
Is He Dead?
September 13-29, 2019
A comedy adapted by David Ives / Directed by Michele Mascari
Jean-Francois Millet, a young painter of genius, is in love with Marie Leroux but in debt to a villainous picture-dealer, Bastien Andre. Andre forecloses on Millet, threatening debtor's prison unless Marie marries him. Millet realizes that the only way he can pay his debts and keep Marie from marrying Andre is to die, as it is only dead painters who achieve fame and fortune. Millet fakes his death and prospers, all while passing himself off as his own sister, the Widow Tillou. Now a rich "widow," he must find a way to get out of a dress, return to life, and marry Marie.