This idea is just too much fun not to give Danny a preview. This sounds like a lovely valentine to community theatre in Tulsa. And the PR is brilliant. Check it out.
Maybelle Wallace and her daughter Sonya met me at the Starbucks in the new main library downtown. After some back and forth about this and that, we got down to some pretty interesting stuff: the challenges of a black theatre company in Tulsa, money, color blind casting, the future of Theatre North, and even a little politics.
FG: When did you start Theatre North?
MW: Well, I didn’t start it. I started working with them in 1977. I started out as Treasurer, then in 1980 we got our 501.c.3. In 1982, I became the business manager. But I found out that some people didn’t want to talk to the “Business Manager” about various things, so my title changed to Executive Director. For a long time, we had an office down in the Greenwood area. We don’t have it any more.
SW: This was a real grass roots group. Mother didn’t have a background in theatre, she learned on the job. It’s amazing to me that she came in, and had the fortitude to build what she did.
FG: You’re basically the African-American company in town. [There’s also a new group started by some black actors out of ORU, Certain Curtain, that is sporadically active]. With that in mind, what are some of the challenges you’ve faced?
MW: Well, it’s always been about money. When we started out, there was no [African-American] company. At one point we had excellent funders, the Williams Co., Amoco. Amoco gave us $5,000 a year for three years.
FG: That’s a fairly substantial amount of money.
MW: There were other companies who gave us that much or more. We are still funded by the OK Arts Council, the National Foundation for the Arts. But it’s a pittance. We’re not getting a lot of money, just enough to produce, to stay alive.
FG: Are you still getting grants from companies, like you did before?
FG: That seems to me to be one of the major issues in the theatre community in general here. Corporations don’t support the local groups any more.
MW: I’ll tell you one of the reasons. Well, we didn’t have Greenwood Cultural Center when we started out. After that was built, it started to receive some of those donations. I think some people thought that if they’d given to a black organization, that they’d taken care of that part of the community.
SW: The "black slot." When we started, we didn’t have competition, no other black arts organizations competing for money. We got a lot of attention, as an identified black group.
SW: There are challenges within the community, and some of it’s on us. It upsets me when I hear that “black artists are able to do quality theatre” because of … I don’t know, it’s hard to ... Look. We’re like any other company. We do good shows, we do shitty shows, pardon my language. This company has been here a long time and I wish that there were more people who would come and work with us. That’s not happening right now. Now that I’m back home , I want to get more involved, start working with the company, try to take it to the next level. If there is such a thing.
MW :I want to say something. Most people who give out money are white. Because they own the corporations, the television stations, they are owned by white people. I don’t know if you can relate to this, me being black and you being white. But racism exists, and it exists in everything. And we’ve found a lot of that. I would say more in individuals rather than foundations. Some people are friendly and some not.
FG: Where would you like to see Theatre North.
SW: We need more funding. We need a staff. Mother does everything basically. Her and Keith Jemison, who’s President of the Board. That’s not to take anything away from what anyone else is doing, people are doing great things, but the majority of the work is done by these two people. I’m going to start learning how to do grant writing myself, so I can do more grants. I would like to see us become an Equity theatre, but that’s far down the road. The next thing we’re planning on doing is youth theatre …
SW: We don’t have an office anymore, I’d like to see that happen. I’d like to see us have our own theatre space. I know a lot of people who don’t want to come downtown, which I think is crazy, the PAC is a public building, we citizens of Tulsa, and people from North Tulsa should be able to be comfortable, because it’s our space. But a lot of people who don’t want to go to the PAC, and they don’t want to come to Guthrie Green either. Because they don’t feel like it’s theirs. But it is ours. But it would be good if we had a building over in our side, in North Tulsa. We need to have more dollars coming from the community, but because it’s economically deprived in North Tulsa, those dollars are very competitive. I’ve had friends who won’t pay to see one of our shows. But you can’t comp every ticket. There are so many things.
MW: And I want to mention Dr. Rodney Clark as well, someone who works with us as well.
SW: Our Artistic Director.
MW: He’s directing “Court-Martial at Fort Devens,” which is our next show. We used to bring in people in from out of the city, out of state, to direct the shows, that’s just not feasible any more. Dr. Clark is very busy, running a school, and a bed and breakfast. The time he can give us is a blessing. Not everybody knows this: He wrote a play for Theatre North, “Reverend I’m Available.” We did that show at the PAC, it went over so well, he was able to take that show on the road.
SW: How many years?
MW: Seven years.
FG: Oh my Lord! That’s incredible. How many people were in this show?!
SW: Huge cast. Plus a band.
FG: Jeez. That’s so expensive. Amazing that he could pull that off. What are some other shows you’re particularly proud of?
MW: We won a state championship (OCTA), with “For Colored Who Have Considered Suicide / When the Rainbow is Enuf.” Then we won, what was the name? The two 104 year old women, we won the state festival with that. “Having Our Say.” That was the title. We won a regional festival (AACT) with “Who Will Sing for Lena.” Vanessa Adams, she’s still doing it around the country. I think she’s going to be doing it in New York. By our organization being here, we gave this person, and others, the opportunity to do what she’s doing now. We don’t get credit.
FG: But you know it. You feel that pride in sending that person out to do what they do.
MW: We have had a lot to do with the, I would say, cultural climate in Tulsa.
SW: We’ve had an impact. And I think we’re important still. We’re important to the community and to Tulsa overall. When we started this company the only time I saw black people in the theatre was the old, tired cliché. “Yes ma’am” and open the door. You didn’t see our stories. We’re the only ones who can tell OUR stories. Granted there are other companies coming along, not just ethnic companies, but the foundation is there. Foundation that we helped to lay. I see Tulsa growing, and with the city growing I see the theatre community expanding exponentially. I know there are going to be great things happening, I believe it.
FG: What are your thoughts on color blind casting?
SW: It depends. Being an actress, I want to play everything. I’ve always wanted to play a man! I feel that there’s universal truth, we’re all human beings and the basic things we can all identify with. I think the color blind casting is important. But there are instances when you have to have a black actor, or you have to have an Indian actor. They did a show recently where they had a white Martin Luther King--
SW: -and a lot of people were upset about it. I understood the reasoning, why they were doing it, it was an experiment. But I would not say that usually you should have someone white play Martin. There’s a fine line.
MW: They had a white guy playing Obama.
SW: Anyway. (Laughter) And he was your favorite too.
MW: Yeah, I liked him.
FG: Where was this!?
FG: Ah, of course.
MW: He did a good job. But back to color blind casting. We’re in all walks of life. Starting with the President of the United States.
SW: If it’s not race specific, there’s no reason why. You know, that’s something where people should be able to think outside the box. But there are instances where it wouldn’t make any sense. A gang in a black neighborhood, whites might not be able to relate to the language, or relate to the experiences. It’s not truthful. As long as it’s truthful, you should be able to play any character.
FG: That’s an interesting criteria. It cuts to the heart of the issue. I’ve done plays that cut both ways. I cast black actresses in a production of “The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-In-Moon Marigolds.” Which is usually done with white actresses, but there’s nothing in there that a black woman couldn’t relate to. And when Clark and Theatre Tulsa partnered on “Up the Down Staircase”, it was absurd that we would do this play set in an urban high school with nothing but white kids. I worked with Lincoln Cochran at Booker T. to bring in some black and Hispanic kids, so there would be some sense of truthfulness. And I think that in large parts of the country, color blind casting is becoming more and more common. I’m not sure about locally.
SW: Half the country is insane, and half’s the country’s ok. (General laughter) It’s true!
FG: I’ve said the same thing. You gotta quick reaction on the current political scene?
MW: This is ridiculous. (More laughter) You know what I’m afraid of? I’m afraid we might have a war.
MW: Maybe. But I’m talking about externally, a nuclear war with another country.
SW: I think there will be violence if he loses. Which I’m sure he’s going to.
FG: It does seem insane, that his supporters are so violent in supporting him.
MW: I think it’s a group of people who think they’re losing out . . .
SW: And they are.
MW: And they are. And they don’t want to give up.
SW: Power’s changing hands. The culture’s no longer being male and white dominated. The demographics are changing. There’s so much upheaval. People having to deal with gay people having the right to marry, and all these things are happening so fast, they’re scared. The only way they know how to react . . . They don’t care what that man says or what he does, they just want him, because that’s something they can identify with. But I have hope. There’s hope for us because … I feel like it’s growing pains now, that we’re at the beginning of something that’s going to happen that’s going to be wonderful. That’s just what I believe. The last vestiges of all of those dark things that we had in America are just trying to hold on with everything they’ve got. But they’re not going to win.
MW: Well, I think it’s time we had a woman president. It’s time. They say the hand that rocks the cradle rules the world. You ever hear that?
FG: I have, and I couldn’t agree more.
MW: I think it would be good if we would take that verse in the Bible, Love thy neighbor as thyself. I think that’s what’s going to heal us. Without love we don’t have anything.
And that interview couldn’t have ended any better if it had been scripted.
The last time Whit Hanna posted here, he talked about the need for cooperation among the theatres in town. Of course, we’ve always had a certain level of cooperation among the theatres. After all, most of us are friends. But there’s an element of competition that has existed and will continue to exist as well. That’s only natural, and not necessarily a bad thing; competition sharpens our edge, inspires us to excellence. You know how you can tell when that competition becomes a problem? When people stop being friends because of it.
No, actually by that point it’s probably too late to do anything about it. When we stop talking to each other, or when we’re reluctant to pick up the phone, that’s when we need to reevaluate what we’re doing and how we’re thinking. We should see silence as the warning sign. It tells us something’s not healthy in the community, and we’re likely hurting ourselves.
All this imho, of course. And what do I know?
But allow me to be the bearer of good news on this front. In doing my design work with T.Pops “All the Way,” I ran into a couple of pretty cool examples of companies working together. Pops was short a cast member; they needed a Ralph Abernathy for this historical drama. Abernathy was the former head of the Southern Christian Leadership Council, the civil rights organization that Martin Luther King headed up before his assassination. That’s his picture at the top. Well, lots of actors out there. So no problem, right?
No one wants to admit it, but yes, there's a problem, and that problem is called "history." How can you overcome history? Maybelle Wallace found an African-American actor who was eager to get onstage, and he was matched with a company that was eager to have him. Connections were made that aren't normally made. And Lee Roach Jr. Joined the cast. And in producing a play that spoke eloquently about history, maybe we made a little along the way.
One more. Everyone knows that finding tech people certified to work in the PAC is an issue. T. Pops suddenly found itself without a lighting designer just a couple of weeks before opening. I agreed to do it, but told Meghan and Angela up front that I only had two nights I was free. The whole design would have to be finished by Wednesday. By the way, there are over 150 cues in this show, it moves more than a freaking musical. Sara Phoenix and Isaac Holton, who were striking "Glengarry Glen Ross" on the Sunday before, agreed to coordinate a couple of things with us that allowed me to finish the design on time. They didn't have to do that, but it made a difference to me that they did.
And with that in mind, this:
Theatre North Tulsa is holding Auditions on October 29th from 1-5pm and October 30th from 2-5pm at the Rudisill Regional Library for the play 'Court-Martial at Fort Devens.'
Roles are reserved for FOUR African-American Women, TWO Caucasian Women, TWO African-American males and TWO Caucasian males to portray adult roles.
For more information please contact Theatre North Tulsa.
Full disclosure, I will be designing and running lights for this play. Come join us.
I'll be posting my own reactions to the TATE awards in the next day or two. But in the meantime, here is a guest post by Whit Hanna, presented in full and without comment.
"The 2016 TATE awards did nothing to help the Tulsa theater community. Now before you lambast me, let me back up for a second.
For those of you not aware, the last eight years, the Kaiser Family Foundation has given twenty grand in prize money to four winning shows in the name of theater excellence. The submitted productions are viewed by a secret group of judges who are supposed to attend all the submitted shows. Said judges then rate aspects of the production on a secret worksheet, and all of that information is handed to a private firm that tallies votes and puts them in sealed secret envelopes. The big selling point being; nobody knows who's going to win. The money breaks down from a ten thousand dollar top prize, five thousand dollar runner up, twenty five hundred dollars for third, and twenty five hundred for a "youth" category. Any 501(c)(3) that fills certain requirements can submit a production. There is a limitation on how many productions can be submitted by any one 501(c)(3). It's a nice chunk of cash, IF you win.
The award ceremony is called the "TATE Awards" which stands for TULSA AREA THEATER EXCELLENCE, and one would assume that the most excellent show will always walk away with some money and a nice statue. But, we have all experienced (at one time or another over the last eight years) that this is not the truth. In fact, sometimes is just blatantly obvious to everyone in the Tulsa theater community that some show or the other got the shaft. Why? Well it all comes down to who the judges are. I'll get to that in a minute.
There are two other awards given during this ceremony: The "Mary K. Place" lifetime achievement award, and the "Distinguished Artist" award. In fact most of the evening is spent on these two awards, with the majority of the time being used for the "Distinguished Artist". Past "distinguish artist" award winners have included Mrs Place, Tim Blake Nelson, and Wes Studi. This year it was Gary Busey. Aye there's the rub: as I said before most of the evening is spent on this particular award, and yet, so far, it has been given to a "celebrity" who is famous for their film work. Film, not theater. Furthermore, this person's "tie" to Tulsa is that they were at some point living in this area. They do not live here now. That is important. These people, who we spend an hour and a half glamorizing at the TATEs, are NOT a part of Tulsa's theater community. Should this award really be the cornerstone of the "Tulsa Area Theater Excellence" award presentation? In contrast the "Mary K Place" award has always gone to someone deeply entrenched in our community. Is it wrong to think that maybe this award should be the cornerstone of the evening? It is these artists that have committed their lives to the Tulsa Theater community.
The shortest section of the evening is dedicated to the aforementioned "excellent" pieces of theater. A wild dash to the finish, sprinkled with short speeches, and as we have all learned, it is anyone's guess who's going to be a winner. I suppose that should make it interesting, but in reality and has an opposite effect.
You see, this year started off with a bang. Not that it hasn't happened in the past, (Wes Studi I'm looking at you). The community knew ahead of time that Gary Busey was going to be receiving the distinguished artist award. Anybody who is been able to turn on the television in the last couple of decades knows just what a "shit show" Gary Busey is. What is his tie to Tulsa? He played some high school football here, then quickly disappeared into Lala land, got himself a Oscar nod, became a celebrity bonfire with his antics, and even got himself "fired" by a presidential nominee.
Unsurprisingly, Gary Busey lived up to all of our expectations. I haven't laughed so hard in a long time. But in many ways that is what makes it so sad, here is a man who has no ties to our theater community, who makes a farce out of the ceremony meant to celebrate the community, and we crown him with the title of "distinguished artist"! It delegitimizes the entire event. This is not a ceremony for our community, this is misguided and misplaced ego stroke for some celebrity that took a weekend of their time to do some "slumming" in Tulsa. I believe I echo my peers in saying if it wasn't for the money, we wouldn't even bother showing up. Cheap beer and boxed wine that runs out too quickly isn't enough...
But the elephant in the room is the awards for Theatre excellence. As I said before, we've all had an experience at this point seeing that the best nominated shows not only do not win, but sometimes don't even place. And really, all conspiracy theories aside, this comes down to nothing more than: who are the judges? Well, funny thing, at this year's ceremony there were white paper place markers suspended above every black table cloth in Cains Ballrom. They listed the names of the 501(c)(3) theater companies. Some for Gary Busey's contingent. Even one for the people carrying the "secret" envelopes. But the paper place card that I like the most said "Tate judges". We all speculate that we know who the judges are, and some of us have pretty much figured out who might be a judge, but for the first time I got to see who the judges were. At least who sat at that table. They quickly took down that paper place card, by the way.
I stared at those people for a long time. I would like to think that I have a pretty good idea of who is intimately involved in our community. I could be wrong, but I didn't recognize any of those people. Another thing, they all seem to be late 50s to middle 70s in age, baby boomers, and Caucasian. Why is that important, you ask? Well, when we look at the shows that win, we often ask why one would place over another. When judges fit into a certain demographic, they are going to like a certain type of product and they are going to a vote accordingly. Also, if this group of judges are outsiders to our community, perhaps people who do not know much about theater, then how would they be able to recognize true excellence and innovation in the work? It makes sense that this group would love a production like Catch Me if You Can; A non-challenging, lighthearted, comedy musical that takes place in the 1960s. It's a baby boomers wet dream. In contrast to the production of Our Town which used heavy tech, asked its audience to interact with their personal smartphone throughout the show, with live Facebook posts, Google searches, and streaming pictures on multiple video screens in the theater. It's a baby boomers worst nightmare. The mystery of why certain shows win over others, in my mind, has been somewhat solved. I get it. I would vote for what I like also. I would favor the things I identify with.
I readily admit there are an awful lot of assumptions in this. Remember I'm just going off of the paper place card. But I did happen to overhear a man right at the end of the awards ceremony angrily proclaim, "I'm one of the Tate judges and I don't have a fucking clue what these people are thinking" as he stormed out of the Cains. Take that as you will.
So what do we do to fix all of this? First we get rid of the distinguished artist award. Turn it into a series of awards celebrating best actor, best actress, best supporting actor, best supporting actress, best director, and best production design. It is about celebrating the Tulsa theater community, right? Then make the focus of the evening the lifetime achievement award. These are people who should be rewarded by our community for their commitment to our community. Lastly, we need Tate judges that have some working knowledge of the Tulsa Theater community, and we must diversify their race and age.
These steps need to be taken, because as of last night, this award ceremony became an absolute farce. Myself, and many of my peers, left shaking our heads at the utter absurdity of it all. I'm not trying to knock the Kaiser foundation. We greatly appreciate the money, but wouldn't it be better served if it was disbursed evenly amongst all of the community, instead of huge chunks going to one group or another based off of a judging committee that really isn't interested in awarding excellence, just their own aesthetics? As it is, the Tate Awards do nothing to help our community, only unnecessarily pitting us against each other, creating needless animosity, and slowly tearing the community apart."
Indian Springs Barber Shop
Odeum Theater Company
There’s an unusual and important performance project coming up this weekend, at the Kerr Warehouse and sponsored by Living Arts and NightLight Tulsa. It’s called, “7 Doorways / 7 Stories: Collaborative Artists Giving Homeless Individuals a Voice.” The idea is simple, but shocking in its unfamiliarity. Let members of Tulsa’s homeless community, of which there are approximately 2,000 at any particular point in time, to tell their stories, and allow local artists to shape those stories into performance presentation—drama, dance, video, music.
The Kerr Warehouse is at 12 N. Cheyenne, and has seven doorways open onto the street. Each doorway frames a story/performance. The entire evening begins with a free burger meal at 8 pm, shared between the audience, artists, and the homeless community, and provided by NightLight Tulsa. The performances, each approximately 10 minutes, then begin around 9 pm. NightLight Tulsa is the organization which gathered the stories, sending people out to shelters and encampments, and encouraging the people there to share their experiences and transcribing the interviews. In partnership with Living Arts, artists were invited to collaborate in groups to shape these stories into the pieces being presented this Saturday.
David Blakely acts as one of the team leaders of this project, supported in his group by Anna Hudson, Mark Leavitt, and Tim Hunter, and we spoke briefly about how he got involved and his interest in this kind of socially conscious theatre.
David: I'm in it because of an earlier project I was involved that was similar. I had gathered numerous stories over last 18 months. I volunteer at the Day Center for the homeless at Denver and Archer, and interviewed some of the people there along with my co-writer Anna Hudson. A magnificent writer, covered South by Southwest for the Voice, a delight to read. She has a scholarship to RSU, and is in one of my classes.
David and Anna had put together a performance art piece as part of the last Art Crawl in May. They had taken 9 of the stories they'd collected and turned them into "testimonials." They then recruited 9 actors, including Tim Hunter, Sally Adams, Andy Axewell, and Robert Spencer Walters. Each was given a story. Each artwork in the gallery, created by student artists and artists from the homeless community, was associated with one of the stories. As a bystander became interested in a piece, the actor associated with that piece approached and began to share his or her story.
David: It's part of the decision I made to do art for social practice. We're creating a text out of a population that we want to empower, to draw attention to . . . it's a movement across the country. Art for social change. In this event coming up on Saturday, the communal meal is followed by the presentation. My part in it is that I've put together 2 of the stories from the earlier, Art Crawl event and linked them with an original song written for the event. I'm excited about that, but more excited that Tulsa's artistic community is getting behind doing this. And it's free! We want to get a bunch of people there.
And now, the editorial. Since I was reassigned to Central Center from Henthorne, I've become much more aware of the homeless situation in Tulsa. There is no one explanation of why someone becomes homeless, every situation is unique, though mental illness, losing one's job, and losing the support of your family can all swiftly spiral into losing one's home. I've also seen how the support groups in town can help in getting people back on their feet, though that doesn't happen often enough. But if you want to learn more about what's going on in our city, you might want to think about attending this event. And the more you learn, the more you might want to help. Irongate, NightLight Tulsa, Salvation Army, John 3:16, and other organizations are both keeping people alive, and helping to give at least some of them a chance at a better life. Putting $5 into the hand of the guy on the corner with the cardboard sign isn't the same thing as contributing something every month into one or two of these organizations, or volunteering once a month. The reality is that this problem isn't ever going to go away. So the question is, how can we help?
Susan Apker and I had sandwiches at the Corner Café, and talked about Heller Theatre’s renewed focus on home grown writers and original work. Heller is putting its money where its mouth is, reaching out to local writers with both opportunities for production and financial remuneration.
FRANK: So Susan, talk a little about where this emphasis on original work comes from.
SUSAN: When we reinvented ourselves a few years ago, we wanted to go back to the roots of Heller Theatre, which did a lot more local, original works in its earlier incarnation. We decided we wanted to support local artists, and get back to producing full length plays written by Tulsa writers. We’ve obviously been doing the Shorts for a few years now. That had a predecessor in that there used to be a playwriting group that met and supported each other at Heller.
FRANK: Before my time.
SUSAN: Well, they produced short play evenings. And when that went away Heller started a nationwide full length play contest, which grew too big for its britches basically.
FRANK: We ended up getting hundreds of entries, no one had time to read them all.
SUSAN: So just after the move to Henthorne, we started up the Shorts Festival. So Heller has always supported new writers, we’re just trying to expand on that. Our five year plan is to add a full length original play every season, and to have a 50% original season every year. Which we actually have this year and will next year as well, with one full length original, Shorts, and two published plays. I’m hoping that down the road, if we’re able to start producing five plays a year, that two of them would be full length originals. That’s in the ten year plan.
FRANK: You’re actually paying your writers for the full length plays, yes?
SUSAN: As a writer myself I firmly believe that the way to support burgeoning artists is to give them remuneration. I really deplore the attitude you sometimes find in this town that, “We’re giving them the privilege of having their play produced.” That makes me crazy. No, they’re giving us the privilege of producing their plays, and I think it’s incumbent on us to treat them as professionals. Giving them some kind of remuneration. Whether it’s as much as we’d give a published playwright? That can be determined individually, but most of the time it is.
FRANK: Heller recently announced a playwright in residence program, and just last week picked the recipient of that award. This is the first time I’ve heard a group in Tulsa doing anything like that. Who was selected for that, and what were the considerations that led the board to choose him?
FRANK: What does the position involve?
SUSAN: In the fall he will be running a workshop for Tulsa writers who are interested, and in the Spring he will workshop his new play and we’ll produce it in May.
FRANK: Will he be directing it?
SUSAN: No, we’ll have someone else directing. We have several people with Heller that have experience in working with and developing new works.
FRANK: You also write, and have a history in creating new work, talk a little about how you started out writing plays.
SUSAN: About 7 or 8 years ago, a friend of mine and I started writing back and forth, showing each other our work. I started submitting what I’d written to playwriting festivals around the country, and some of the things I wrote started getting accepted. So that was very exciting. Then I started to go see some of them, and realized that getting accepted did not mean it was good. Or that the festival was good (laughs). So I continued to write and try to improve my writing. And now I’ve had plays produced from Hawaii to Canada. I’m hoping soon to start writing my first full length play. Well, actually I’ve written a full length play, but when I submitted it to Heller anonymously, it was described as “something akin to an afterschool special.” (laughs) So I just decided I didn’t need to admit that I wrote it! I’m just going to keep working.
FRANK: How many of your plays have been performed outside of Tulsa?
SUSAN: Four, I think. One that’s been performed half a dozen times around the country. It will have its Tulsa premiere in June, in the show with Dan.
FRANK: Switching back to Heller, you have an original play opening this weekend, Emile Adams’ I Wish You Actually Liked Me, and Other Familial Impossibilities. I’m curious, how did Emile’s play get chosen for production by Heller?
SUSAN: Several of the board members saw it produced last year and loved it, and said that we needed to give it a place where it can be done again. So we put it into the season.
FRANK: And how did you decide on Laura Skoch to direct?
SUSAN: Laura has experience in working with new work, quite a bit in New York. Particularly from an actor’s standpoint has worked lots of original works, working with writers who are just putting their plays together. We decided it would be a perfect match.
FRANK: I can see why. I was very impressed with Laura when I interviewed her and Emile. And this is being performed where?
SUSAN: It’s going to be at Henthorne. Four days, Thursday through Sunday, May 19-22. 7:30 Thursday, Friday and Saturday, 2 pm on Sunday.
FRANK: And how is it being back at Henthorne?
SUSAN: We love being back at Henthorne, we love working with Erin and Melissa. They’re very supportive of us, so it’s a great boon to be over there. We’re also looking at the Nightingale Theatre as possibly the permanent home for the Shorts Festival. It draws a different crowd, might be a better fit. We’re always happy working closely with John and the gang over there as well.
And speaking of the Shorts Festival, the winners were announced this week, and they are as follows:
Working Title--Charlie Water and Luke Thompson
The Electrician - Donny Bailey
Roommates - Tess Paden
Attention - David Blakely
Hawthorne Sisters, Three - Hunter Cates
Break A Leg - Daniel Hitzman
That Awkward Moment - Lindsey Lewis
The Shorts perform 15, 16, and 17 of July, at the Nightingale Theatre, Emile’s play this weekend, and David Blakely’s play next May. Good to see Heller encouraging local writers.
Arts Alliance Tulsa
Green Room OK
Tulsa Little Theatre
Tulsa Weekly Roundup
Am. Theatre Co.
BA Community Playhouse
Clark Youth Theatre
G Rated Theatre
Midwestern Theater Co.
Muskogee Little Theatre
Owasso Comm. Theatre
Sand Springs Comm. Th.
Sapulpa Comm. Theatre
Tulsa Latino Theatre
Tulsa Project Theatre
Tulsa Rep. Musicals
Tulsa Spotlight Theatre