Theatre Experience Stages, Mirrors Community Diversity

May 4, 2017

File photo of actors from the 2016 Voice of Pride theater festival.
Credit New Route Theater

The second year of a New Route Theatre festival keeps the goal of the first year: attract an audience that reflects the diversity of the community. 

The Voice of Pride: 2nd Annual Festival of New Plays features four staged readings through May 7. New Route Theatre Artistic Director Don Shandrow said during Sound Ideas there was a call for submissions, and readers for the theatre narrowed down the final list.

"We're looking really to create an experience for the audience," said Shandrow. "There may be some plays that we say "you know what we'd like to do this play, but we'll set it aside and maybe we'll look at it next year." 

Shandrow directs "His/Her Escapades"and "A Beautiful Building." Joe McDonnell helped select the plays, directs "Postcoital Variations," and reads in "A Beautiful Building." McDonnell said a staged reading, as fewer rehearsals than a complete staged play.

The online banner promoting the 2017 festival.
Credit New Route Theater

"That's partially because all the actors are working for free, they have lives, but it's also because the plays are not really considered finished," said McDonnell. "The playwrights are actually looking to see and hear their plays in a very rudimentary way. "

McDonnell says playwrights are hoping to find out how the flow goes, to find possible changes, to discover if the play actually works. All but one of the playwrights are coming to the community to watch one of the readings. With a reading, the audience gets a peek behind the curtain and the playwrights will talk with the audience for feedback.

"A Perfect Fit" by Lia Romeo
Directed by Kat Gregory

The moving story of a mother and daughter both questioning their sexuality: Nicole is a college sophomore in love with a girl. Janet, her mother, has begun to doubt her own identity and assumptions. Nicole and Janet are not just family. They're friends on a journey of harsh truths leading, they hope, to a better sense of self.

 

"His/Her Escapade" by Christopher vanDer Ark
Directed by Don Shandrow 

An unstoppable comedy about Catherine (a heterosexual, gay magnet) searching for herself in a very gay world. Life whirls delightfully by in this futuristic fantasy of a girl dating two guys named Mike, and her unlucky-in-love gay best friend, Josh.

 

"Postcoital Variations" by Alex Dremann
Directed by Joe McDonnell

Farcical and profound, Postcoital Variations flirts irresistibly with your inhibitions and presents scintillating new visions of "acceptable" romantic partnerships. It's Twister while sober -- "Spin the bottle" with intent. Pre-conceived notions about sex are challenged with such effortless fun, you might just leave the theatre with a new definition for "normal." 

 

"A Beautiful Building by Peter Macklin
Directed by Don Shandrow

A timely debate between an openly gay actor, and a Catholic priest with a secret past. A Beautiful Building grips you at once and doesn't let go. It's the long awaited heart-to-heart between two men from different backgrounds, deeply attracted to one another.

 

FESTIVAL SCHEDULE

All Events are in the Chateau Hotel's theatre and conference rooms, with special bar available

Thursday, May 4

6:00 Happy Hour in the Chateau Conference Center
7:30 A Perfect Fit

Friday, May 5
6:00 Happy Hour in the Chateau Conference Center
7:30 Postcoital Variations

Saturday, May 6
11:00am A Perfect Fit
12:20 Discussion
1:00 His/Her Escapades
4:15 Discussion (may end 4:40)
4:30 Dinner
6:00 A Beautiful Building
8:05 Discussion
8:30 Postcoital Variations
10:35pm Discussion

Sunday, May 7
2:00 A Beautiful Building
4:05 Discussion
4:30 Dinner 
6:00 His/Her Escapades
9:15 Discussion

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