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items tagged with Fences

Curtain Call: Mike Schulz and Thom White Discuss Area Theatre in 2010
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2010-12-20 12:00:00

Joseph Obleton, Fred Harris, Jr., Renaud Haymon, Reggie Jarrell, and Shanna Cramer in the Playcrafters Barn Theatre's FencesAs we’ve come to annually expect, there was practically no end to the highlights from this past year in area theatre.


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Leap of Faith: Playcrafters Presents the Biblical Musical "Hard to Believe," Opening September 10
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2010-08-30 12:00:00

Megan Elliott, Linell Ferguson, Wendy Czekalski, Sara Laufer, and Kris Preston in Hard to Believe"I think Playcrafters has traditionally had the reputation of being a stodgy old theatre that only does six comedies a year," says Tom Morrow, a frequent actor and director for Moline's venerable Barn Theatre. "And admittedly, we do a lot of comedies. But every once in a while, we try to stick our necks out and do something else."

That they do. In addition to the titles produced in conjunction with Playcrafters' 2009 "Diversity Initiative" - Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun and August Wilson's Fences - other recent "something else"s have included 2005's Altar Call, a debuting, religiously themed drama written by local playwright Melissa McBain, and 2008's Promises, Promises, one of only a handful of musicals the theatre has produced during its 81-year history.

And on September 10, the Playcrafters Barn Theatre will actually present something of a blend of these latter two works - a debuting, religiously themed musical - when it premieres Hard to Believe, a song-filled re-telling of the Biblical story of Job, directed by Morrow, and written and composed by Tim Stoller and Jonathan Turner. Previously staged, in workshop form, at Rock Island's defunct Green Room Theatre in 2008 and Davenport's Zion Lutheran Church in 2009, Turner says that "the whole theme of the show is about the challenges of faith, and maintaining your faith in the face of all this tragedy."
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Like Father, Love Son: "Fences," at the Playcrafters Barn Theatre through July 18
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Reviews

2010-07-09 12:00:00

Fred Harris Jr. in FencesFences might more aptly be titled Porches, as author August Wilson's characters spend much of the play sitting on a porch, swapping stories. Yet the script is so well written - with its raw, realistic dialogue and slice-of-life style - that it's not surprising that Wilson's drama won both the Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1987 and the Tony Award for Best Revival of a Play just last month. And while Monday night's preview performance of the Playcrafters Barn Theatre's Fences wasn't quite at the award-worthy level, the production shouldn't be overlooked when planning a night at the theatre.
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Stage (Dumb)Struck: Summer Theatre in the Quad Cities and Surrounding Areas
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2010-05-24 12:00:00
J. Adam Lounsberry, Tracy Pelzer-Timm, Jenny Winn, and Nathan Bates in Quad City Music Guild's Guys & DollsAs with summer movies, the area's summer-theatre scene - featuring, at last count, a whopping 68 productions scheduled by 22 organizations - is jam-packed with escapist fare: musicals, comedies, mysteries, musical-comedy mysteries. But like the random art-house release that manages to sneak into Hollywood's blockbuster-centric season, this summer will also feature occasional dramas and classical works, plus no less than four Pulitzer Prize-winners - five, if you count one of them being produced at two separate venues.
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Much Ado About Many Things: Spring Theatre in the Quad Cities and Surrounding Areas
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Theatre

Category: Feature Stories

2009-03-04 01:43:43

The Prenzie Players' Much Ado About NothingThe Quad Cities' spring theatre season will be bookended by Shakespeare, with the March 6 opening of Much Ado About Nothing, and Sophocles, with the May 28 debut of Oedipus Rex. But just because these plays are, respectively, more than 400 and 2,400 years old, it probably isn't wise to enter them expecting the expected. This Sophocles, after all, is subtitled The Audacity of Oed, and this Shakespeare is being staged by the Prenzie Players, so in both works, you may as well expect anything to happen; considering our lineup also features titles by Stephen Sondheim, Neil Simon, Euripides, and Mel Brooks, I'm thinking you can say the same for the theatre season as a whole.


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