Davenport's QC Theatre Workshop will host auditions for its summer production, Nina Raine's family drama Tribes, on Saturday, February 21 at 5:00pm, with performances scheduled for June 12 - 28. Directed by Augustana College theatre instructor Jennifer Popple, Tribes features roles for three women and three men, ages early 20s through early 60s, with two of the roles requiring some performance of sign language.

The recipient of the 2012 Drama Desk Award for Best Play, Tribes tells the story of a young deaf man born into a hearing family, whose parents - wanting to protect him from feeling like an outcast - prevent him from learning sign language. However, when he meets a young woman who is losing her hearing and is already fluent in sign, deeper questions about family, community, beliefs, traditions, and communication are raised in this smart and moving new work that the Chicago Tribune called "uncommonly fine play," and the New Yorker magazine deemed "extraordinary."

Raine's unique drama employs both speech and sign language - with the latter being interpreted for hearing audiences via projected super-titles - and two of Tribes' cast members will be asked to perform sign language in their roles. But while prior familiarity with sign language will be beneficial, it is not required, as rehearsals will be set aside for the actors to focus exclusively on sign.

Female actors are sought for the roles of Beth (50s/60s), Ruth (20s), and Sylvia (20s), and male actors for the roles of Christopher (50s/60s), Daniel (20s), and Billy (20s). Those auditioning will be asked to perform a memorized dramatic monologue of two minutes or fewer and be prepared to read from the script. Rehearsals will begin in early May, with opening night scheduled for Friday, June 12.

Prior to Tribes, the QC Theatre Workshop will present its two spring productions. The first production of 2015 is author Keith Huff's Broadway smash A Steady Rain. Running March 13 - 28, and described by the Chicago Tribune as "a gritty, rich, thick, poetic, and entirely gripping noir" this tale of two Chicago cops and a horrific shooting reunites the team who initiated the Workshop's 2012 debut production of RED: director Tyson Danner and co-stars Mike Schulz and Thomas Alan Taylor. In May, the Workshop with partner with Dress for Success Quad Cities to present a benefit production of Nora and Delia Ephron's Love, Loss and What I Wore May 15 - 17.

and other events at the QC Theatre Workshop, call (563)650-2396 or e-mail info@QCTheatreWorkshop.org, and visit QCTheatreWorkshop.org and Facebook.com/QCTheatreWorkshop.

A Steady Rain Performances

Friday, March 13, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, March 14, 7:30 p.m.

Friday, March 20, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, March 21, 7:30 p.m.

Friday, March 27, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, March 28, 7:30 p.m.

Love, Loss and What I Wore

Performances

Friday, May 15, 7:30pm

Saturday, May 16, 7:30pm

Sunday, May 17, 3pm

Tribes Performances

Friday, June 12, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, June 13, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, June 14, 3 p.m.

Friday, June 19, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, June 20, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, June 21, 3 p.m.

Friday, June 26, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, June 27, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, June 28, 3 p.m.






This month, the QC Theatre Workshop will run an online campaign to help fund its upcoming 2015 productions. The QC Theatre Workshop's first large-scale fundraising effort will begin December 1, 2014. The final day of the campaign will be January 1, 2015. Donations can be made safely and securely through the company's website: QCTheatreWorkshop.org.

In August 2012, the Workshop started from scratch in a former elementary-school gymnasium with its dynamic production of John Logan's RED. In the following two and a half years, the dedicated and dynamic company has presented 10 productions, including such memorable hits as Last Call, Bat Boy: The Musical, and the world premiere of Aaron Randolph III's A Green River, which was later produced at Augustana College, and was highlighted in a documentary feature on WQPT.

Dedicated to providing powerful theatre that is accessible to everyone in the Quad Cities community, every Workshop production is offered under its "Pay What It's Worth" pricing policy, allowing patrons to determine their own ticket price based on the quality of the production, their financial ability, and their interest in supporting live theatre.

"An incredible number of new businesses fail within their first two years," says Tyson Danner, the Workshop's Artistic Director. "Not only have we survived, but we have thrived. That's incredible for any small business, let alone a brand-new nonprofit arts organization. Our success is entirely due to the support we've received from our audiences."

Danner and the theatre's Board of Directors have decided that the growing company is ready to take the next step. This season, the Workshop will begin to pay selected positions in each production, with the goal of paying all directors, designers, staff, and actors by next season.

"Paying artists is the single biggest key to our future success," says Danner. "Not only do they deserve to be compensated for the tremendous amount of time and energy they offer, but it will also allow us to secure the right people for the right positions. Not everyone has the luxury of spending weeks working on a play for free. We want to make sure that - just like everyone can afford to see a play at the Workshop - everyone can afford to participate in our productions."

The funds raised will also go toward supporting the practical costs of producing theatre, such as lighting equipment, sets, props, performance rights, and costumes for the Workshop's upcoming productions of A Steady Rain and Tribes. A Steady Rain will be a reunion of the original trio behind RED: director Tyson Danner and actors Mike Schulz and Thomas Alan Taylor. A Steady Rain performances will take place March 13 - March 29. Following A Steady Rain, the company will partner with Dress for Success Quad Cities for a benefit performance of Nora Ephron's and Delia Ephron's Love, Loss, and What I Wore in mid-May. Rounding out its third season, the Workshop will present Nina Raine's Tribes June 12 - June 28.

For further information, please call (563)650-2396 or e-mail info@QCTheatreWorkshop.org, and visit QCTheatreWorkshop.org and Facebook.com/QCTheatreWorkshop.

For its tenth production, the QC Theatre Workshop is staging a creepy and hilarious off-Broadway hit just in time for Halloween - Bat Boy: The Musical. Running October 24 through November 9, this campy, critically-acclaimed title is only the second musical to be produced during the company's history, and among its 10-person cast, nine of Bat Boy's performers will be making their debuts on the Workshop stage.

Bat Boy: The Musical will be presented at the QC Theatre Workshop (1730 Wilkes Avenue, Davenport, IA) Fridays through Sundays, October 24 through November 9. Friday and Saturday performances will begin at 7:30 p.m. with the doors opening at 7 p.m., and the Sunday shows start at 3 p.m., with doors opening at 2:30 p.m. Due to its occasional violence and some mild language, the musical is recommended for patrons of middle-school age or older.

Winner of the "Best Off-Broadway Musical" citation at the 2001 Outer Critic Circle Awards, Bat Boy: The Musical found its origins in the famed, fabricated Weekly World News articles about a half-bat/half-boy who was found living in a cave in rural West Virginia. Using these stories as their inspiration, composer/lyricist Laurence O'Keefe (Legally Blonde: The Musical) and book writers Keythe Farley and Brian Flemming constructed a riotous, spooky, and surprisingly touching tale of a misunderstood creature, the family who takes him in, and the townsfolk who want him destroyed.

With The New Yorker describing the show as "a giggly cult hit," and with CurtainUp praising its "peppy and melodic pop-rock score," Bat Boy is a musical that the Workshop's Artistic Director Tyson Danner - who also serves as the production's music director - has long wanted to stage.

"I have adored this crazy show for years, and have been waiting for the chance to produce it on our stage. And after Last Call was such a hit last year, we know our audiences are eager for more musicals," says Danner.

James Fairchild serves as Bat Boy's director and has extensive experience in stage musicals, having appeared in the Workshop's Last Call: The Songs of Stephen Sondheim, the District Theatre's Avenue Q and Rent, and the Circa '21 Dinner Playhouse's Fiddler on the Roof, Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story, and The Full Monty. His directing résumé, meanwhile, includes presentations ranging from the musical A New Brain to the comedy A Tuna Christmas to the Pulitzer Prize-winning drama Doubt.

Portraying the title character is area actor Calvin Vo, who previously played Bay Boy in Augustana College's 2012 presentation of the show. With his other area credits including roles in Countryside Community Theatre's South Pacific and Genesius Guild's Twelfth Night and Coriolanus, Vo served as sound designer for the Workshop's How I Learned to Drive but is now making his acting debut on the Workshop stage - along with eight other members of the show's 10-person cast.

"The Quad Cities has a wealth of hilarious, talented actors - many of whom don't get enough opportunities to perform," says Danner. "We're thrilled to have so many new faces involved. Every show we've produced has had at least actor new to our stage, and this time we get nine!"

Included among Bat Boy's ensemble are: Jenny Winn (Quad City Music Guild's Les Misérables; the District Theatre's Company); Becca Meumann Johnson (Music Guild's Legally Blonde: The Musical; the Center for Living Arts' All Shook Up); Kailey Ackermann (Augustana's Bat Boy; the Center for Living Arts' Rent); Macy Hernandez (Augustana's The Secret Garden and The Arsonists); Aaron Lord (the Center for Living Arts' Spring Awakening and Bare); Brant Peitersen (Countryside's Shrek: The Musical); Keenen Wilson (Columbia College

Chicago's Guys & Dolls); and 16-year-old Ty Lane (Bettendorf High School's The Music Man; Davenport Junior Theatre's A Midsummer Night's Dream).

Bat Boy's cast is rounded out by Workshop veteran Mike Schulz, whose most recent credits include roles in 'Art' and True West, and the show's pianist is Marcia Renaud, the music director and organist at Salem Lutheran Church in Moline who also serves as accompanist for the Quad City Singers.

"It speaks to the quality of our work thus far that so many experienced artists are interested in working at the Workshop," says Danner. "It is very challenging to find staff locally, but show after show we wind up with fantastic artistic leadership - and this show is a real standout in that regard."

As with the Workshop's nine previous productions, Bat Boy: The Musical will be presented under the Workshop's "Pay What It's Worth" pricing policy in which guests see the play first and then pay on their way out, allowing viewers to determine what the experience was worth to them personally. This innovative strategy was designed to create a wholly accessible theatrical experience for patrons regardless of financial means, and the policy's great success - ever since the Workshop's 2012 debut presentation of Red - has allowed it to continue for Bat Boy.

For reservations and more information on Bat Boy: The Musical, please call (563)650-2396 or e-mail info@QCTheatreWorkshop.org, and visit QCTheatreWorkshop.org and Facebook.com/QCTheatreWorkshop.

Bat Boy: The Musical Performance Schedule

Friday, October 24, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, October 25, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, October 26, 3 p.m.

Friday, October 31, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, November 1, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, November 2, 3 p.m.

Friday, November 7, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, November 8, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, November 9, 3 p.m.

QC Theatre Workshop

1730 Wilkes Avenue, Davenport, Iowa, 52804

(563)650-2396

info@QCTheatreWorkshop.org

QCTheatreWorkshop.org

Facebook.com/QCTheatreWorkshop

Having completed its 2013-14 season with the acclaimed production of True West, Davenport's QC Theatre Workshop is gearing up for its third season of performances with two exciting and funny presentations: the Tony Award-winning comedy 'Art,' running August 15 through 30, and Bat Boy: The Musical, with auditions for the October show taking place on July 26.

Translated by Oscar winner Christopher Hampton from the original French play by Yasmina Reza (author of 2009's Tony champ God of Carnage), 'Art' is a biting and hilarious exploration of male camaraderie, competitiveness, and ego. Reza's comedy revolves around the purchase of an enormous white painting, with white lines, that threatens the relationship of three longtime friends: Serge, who can't grasp his pals' disapproval of his new artwork; Marc, who can't fathom the $200,000 purchase of an all-white painting; and Yvan, who can't understand why everyone can't just get along.

Described by the New York Times as "very funny" and "an impeccably tailored piece of work," 'Art' received the 1998 Tony for Best Play and went on to run for 600 performances. The show was also produced by the area's Curtainbox Theatre Company in 2010, and the QC Theatre Workshop's Artistic Director Tyson Danner is delighted that the cast for that production - Adam Michael Lewis, Aaron Randolph III, and Mike Schulz - is returning, in their original roles, for this new take on 'Art.'

"At the Workshop, we are incredibly lucky to attract such stellar performers show after show," says Danner, "and these guys were all eager to reunite. I can't wait for our audiences to see what a riot they will be!"

Each member of the show's acting trio is already acquainted with the Workshop venue: Lewis appeared there in the Prenzie Players' 2013 production of Two Gentlemen of Verona; Randolph was the author of last summer's original drama A Green River; and Schulz performed in the company's springtime presentation of True West.

 

But while this stage reunion is taking place with the full support of 'Art''s Curtainbox director Dave Furness and producer Kimberly Kurtenbach Furness, Danner - who will direct the Workshop's production- stresses that the season-opener is not simply a remount of a previous area presentation.

 

"I am glad we can offer this play to our community again. Having been out of the area during the previous production, I'm looking forward to leading the production with a fresh perspective," says Danner. "Plus, 'Art' will take place exactly two years after our first production, and it couldn't be a better match. I love that we get the chance to produce this comedic flip-side of RED."

 

'Art' will be staged at the QC Theatre Workshop (1730 Wilkes Avenue, Davenport) from August 15 through 30. Friday and Saturday performances are at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday performances are at 3 p.m., and due to occasional strong language, the show is recommended for mature audiences.

 

Meanwhile, three weeks prior to 'Art''s opening, the theatre will host auditions for its October production (performance dates TBA) of the off-Broadway smash Bat Boy: The Musical, which will take place at the Workshop from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, July 26.

 

Loosely based on the notorious Weekly World News story about a half-boy/half-bat who was discovered living alone in a cave, Bat Boy is the hysterical, clever, and surprisingly touching tale of a strange young creature and the townsfolk who despise him - a genre-bending hit that led the New York Times to rave, "It's remarkable what [this show's] intelligent wit can accomplish."

 

James Fairchild, from last fall's Workshop production of Last Call: The Songs of Stephen Sondheim and director of the District Theatre's A New Brain, will direct Bat Boy. Roles are available for male and female actors of all ages and types, with most characters open to the double- (and even triple- ) casting of performers. Those auditioning should be prepared to read from the script, and should prepare 32 bars, or one verse and chorus, of either a pop-rock song or an up-tempo musical-theatre selection. No monologues will be required, but those auditioning should come prepared to tell a joke.

 

As with the Workshop's eight previous productions, both 'Art' and Bat Boy: The Musical will be presented under the company's popular "Pay What It's Worth" policy, which allows patrons to determine their own ticket prices following each performance.

 

or info@QCTheatreWorkshop.org, or visit QCTheatreWorkshop.org.

 

Bat Boy: The Musical auditions

Saturday, July 26, 1 - 3 p.m.

 

'Art' performances

Friday, August 15, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, August 16, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, August 17, 3 p.m.

 

Friday, August 22, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, August 23, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, August 24, 3 p.m.

 

Friday, August 29, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, August 30, 7:30 p.m.

 

QC Theatre Workshop

1730 Wilkes Avenue, Davenport, Iowa, 52804

(563)650-2396

info@QCTheatreWorkshop.org

QCTheatreWorkshop.org

Facebook.com/QCTheatreWorkshop

 

From May 16 through June 1, Davenport's QC Theatre Workshop will present Sam Shepard's True West, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author's lauded comedy about two contentious, long-separated brothers. Yet in a risky and exciting area experiment, neither the production's patrons nor its actors will know who is playing which leading role until just before the play begins, as the casting of siblings Austin and Lee, for each performance, will be determined by an audience member flipping a coin.

True West will be staged at the QC Theatre Workshop (1730 Wilkes Avenue, Davenport, IA) Fridays through Sundays, May 16 through June 1. Friday and Saturday performances will begin at 7:30 p.m. with the doors opening at 7 p.m., and the Sunday shows start at 3 p.m., with doors opening at 2:30 p.m. Due to occasional strong language and violence, the play is recommended for patrons of high-school age or older.

A 2000 Tony Award nominee for Best Play, True West is an intense, funny, explosive tale of polar-opposite brothers: Austin, a mild-mannered screenwriter hoping to score his big break, and Lee, an unpredictable and volatile drifter hoping to score any way he can. Shepard's play opens with the men meeting again after five years apart, and over the next 90 minutes, True West explores the maddening, hilarious, and dangerous bonds shared by family, resulting in a work the New York Times praised as "a great American play, arguably Mr. Shepard's finest."

True West's Broadway engagement famously had leading actors John C. Reilly and the late Philip Seymour Hoffman - both of them Tony-nominated - alternating the roles of Austin and Lee throughout the show's run. This inspired QC Theatre Workshop director Tyson Danner to try a similar approach for his production of True West, but with an added caveat: Instead of scheduling which actor would play which role in advance, the casting would be determined by a flipped coin mere minutes before each performance.

"We wanted to find a way to keep the performances spontaneous," says Danner, who also serves as the Workshop's Artistic Director. "And because I was already crazy enough to ask the leading actors to play two characters, I decided we might as well go all the way with it and let the audience in on the fun."

Alternating the roles of Austin and Lee are local actors Jeremy Mahr and Mike Schulz. Although True West marks his first appearance as an actor in a Workshop production (having previously served as a crew member in Private Eyes), Mahr previously performed at the venue in the Prenzie Players' Bear Girl and The Rover, and has also been seen in area works including the Green Room Theatre's Doubt, the Richmond Hill Barn Theatre's Arcadia, and the Curtainbox Theatre Company's Wit. Schulz, meanwhile, performed alongside Mahr in The Rover and the Prenzies' Cyrano de Bergerac, appeared in the Workshop productions How I Learned to Drive, A Green River, and Red, and co-created and directed the company's 2013 musical revue Last Call: The Songs of Stephen Sondheim.

Says Danner, "It's rare to find actors willing to tackle such complicated, dynamic roles - not to mention two roles at the same time. Without Jeremy's and Mike's vast experience, talent, and guts, there's no way we'd be able to attempt such a unique and exciting approach."

Filling out True West's four-person cast are two area performers making their Workshop debuts: Brent Tubbs, who plays the Hollywood producer Saul, and Susan Perrin-Sallak, who portrays Austin's and Lee's mother. Tubbs is a frequent performer with Rock Island's ComedySportz troupe and an instructor at Davenport Junior Theatre, and was a longtime member of the Reduced Shakespeare Company, for which he toured Holland, Belgium, and across the United States. And Perrin-Sallak is a familiar presence on local stages, with credits including Next Fall and Other Desert Cities for New Ground Theatre, Doubt for the District Theatre, and Electra and The Winter's Tale for Genesius Guild.

"I am beyond excited for the opportunity to present this one-of-a-kind production in our community," says Danner. "As a director, I usually enjoy rehearsals more than performances, due to all the fun and experimentation that can happen in the rehearsal room. But this may be the first time that the performances will be more unpredictable than the rehearsals!"

As with the Workshop's seven previous productions, True West will be presented under the Workshop's "Pay What It's Worth" pricing policy in which guests see the play first and then pay on their way out, allowing viewers to determine what the experience was worth to them personally. This innovative strategy was designed to create a wholly accessible theatrical experience for patrons regardless of financial means, and the policy's great success - ever since the Workshop's 2012's debut presentation Red - has allowed it to continue for True West.

or e-mail info@QCTheatreWorkshop.org, and visit QCTheatreWorkshop.org and Facebook.com/

True West Performance Schedule

Friday, May 16, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, May 17, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, May 18, 3 p.m.

Friday, May 23, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, May 24, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, May 25, 3 p.m.

Friday, May 30, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, May 31, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, June 1, 3 p.m.

 

Location

QC Theatre Workshop

1730 Wilkes Avenue

Davenport, IA, 52804

 

(563)650-2396

info@QCTheatreWorkshop.com

QCTheatreWorkshop.org

Facebook.com/QCTheatreWorkshop

As we collectively enter a new year, Davenport's QC Theatre Workshop is ringing in 2014 with a trio of exciting events: an area premiere by guest artists from Iowa City; auditions for this spring's production of a recent Tony Award winner; and the opening of the latest show in the Workshop's 2013-14 season - the lead casting for which will be determined by the flip of a coin.

On Friday, January 17, and Saturday, January 18, the Workshop will present 7:30 p.m. performances of the debuting drama My Sister, written by University of Iowa Adjunct Professor Janet Schlapkohl. Moving between an apartment and a cabaret in 1934 Berlin, this 90-minute original work tells the story of twin sisters (played by Elizabeth & Emily Hinckler of Iowa City) trying to survive and realize their dreams as the world collapses around them, and explores perceptions of disability played against the backdrop of history.

Directed by Maria Vorhis, an Artistic Associate with Iowa City's renowned Working Group Theatre, the two-character My Sister is a passion project for author Schlapkohl, who earned a 2012 MFA in Playwriting from the University of Iowa, and is the founder of Combined Efforts Theatre - a non-profit organization purposefully inclusive of actors with disabilities. The QC Theatre Workshop's Artistic Director, Tyson Danner, says he's delighted for the chance to co-present this debuting work to local audiences.

"There is nothing more thrilling than helping to bring a new script into the world," states Danner. "The response to our first world premiere, last summer's A Green River, was beyond our wildest dreams, and that kind of support is enabling us to seek out many other original works to produce right here in the Quad Cities. It's our hope that these debuting plays will continue to find success long past their Workshop productions, as we saw with Augustana College's December presentation of A Green River."

On Saturday, January 25 at 1 p.m., the Workshop will host auditions for the company's springtime presentation of Venus in Fur, David Ives' erotic comedy that was Tony-nominated for Best Play in 2011, and earned star Nina Arianda the Tony for Best Actress in a Play. A hilarious and mysterious tale of role reversal, power shifts, and sexual gamesmanship, Ives' juicy two-character tale was a critical and commercial smash, and the Workshop's production of the show will require one woman who can play early- to mid-20s, and one man who can play 20s to 30s. Those auditioning should prepare a monologue of two minutes or fewer and be prepared to read from the script.

"Dynamism, power, and sexiness of Venus in Fur's kind are rarely seen on stage," says Danner, who will direct the May production. "It's safe to say that even the most avid theatre fans have seen nothing like it."

And the Workshop's winter wraps up with Sam Shepard's modern classic True West, a dramatic comedy about contentious brothers and elusive identity running February 21 through March 9. (Performances will be held Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m., and Sundays at 3 p.m.) With widely respected area-theatre veterans Jason Platt and Angela Rathman featured in its cast, True West will star Jeremy Mahr and Mike Schulz as warring siblings Austin and Lee, and in a unique twist, the central casting will be determined mere minutes before each performance, with an audience member flipping a coin to see which actor plays which role.

"Not only are we presenting audiences with this incredible play," says True West director Danner, "but we're essentially presenting two different versions of the play. We're hoping that audiences have as much fun seeing the different takes on True West as we are working on them."

As with the Workshop's previous productions, all its 2014 shows will be presented under "Pay What It's Worth" ticket pricing that finds patrons seeing the play first and paying on their way out, a policy that allows viewers to determine what the experience was worth to them personally, and that allows a wholly accessible theatrical experience for patrons regardless of financial means.

or e-mail info@QCTheatreWorkshop.org, and visit QCTheatreWorkshop.org and Facebook.com/

 

My Sister performance schedule

Friday, January 17, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, January 18, 7:30 p.m.

Venus In Fur auditions

Saturday, January 25, 1 p.m.

True West performance schedule

Friday, February 21, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, February 22, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, February 23, 3 p.m.

Friday, February 28, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, March 1, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, March 2, 3 p.m.

Friday, March 7, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, March 8, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, March, 3 p.m.

After producing five acclaimed plays, one of them a world premiere, during the company's first 13 months, Davenport's QC Theatre Workshop is set to stage its first musical with the debuting Last Call: The Songs of Stephen Sondheim.

Running Friday, November 1, through Sunday, November 17 at the QC Theatre Workshop (1730 Wilkes Avenue, Davenport), Last Call is an original revue of songs featuring lyrics and/or music by the legendary Sondheim, the winner of eight Tony Awards, eight Grammy Awards, an Academy Award, and the Pulitzer Prize for 1985's Sunday in the Park with George. Lauded for such classic works as Sweeney Todd, Into the Woods, A Little Night Music, Company, and numerous others, Sondheim has been described by the New York Times as "the greatest and perhaps best-known artist in the American musical theatre," and according to Last Call's producer and music director Tyson Danner, consequently seemed like the perfect artist to celebrate in the Workshop's first musical endeavor.

"While our first season consisted entirely of plays," says Danner, who also serves as his company's Artistic Director, "we at the Workshop have been looking forward to presenting a musical that would highlight the vast talents of Quad Cities singers. And when we had the idea of producing a revue, it only made sense to feature the songs of one of the kings of the modern musical."

Created by Danner and director Mike Schulz, Last Call features performances of more than two dozen numbers from Sondheim's musical canon - songs ranging from Dick Tracy's Oscar-winning "Sooner or Later" to Company's well-known "Ladies Who Lunch" to the rarely heard "Take Me to the World" from the 1966 TV-movie Evening Primrose.

Yet the show also weaves its songs together in the form of a mostly dialogue-free narrative (conceived by Danner and Schulz) set in a hotel bar, with a group of spouses, lovers, friends, and strangers crossing paths, reminiscing, and falling in and out of love over the course of Last Call's 90-minute running length.

Says Danner, "It's a testament to Sondheim's brilliant songwriting that each of these numbers can be interpreted in so many ways. Out of hundreds of possibilities, we chose the songs that played to our actors' greatest strengths, and they've had a blast approaching the material in different contexts."

Featured among Last Call's cast are: Erin Churchill (Circa '21's Irving Berlin's White Christmas, the District Theatre's Avenue Q); Don Denton (Circa '21's Miracle on 34th Street and The Full Monty); Angela Elliott (the District Theatre's Company and Sweeney Todd); James Fairchild (Circa '21's Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story, the District Theatre's Rent); Kim Furness (Circa '21's Southern Crossroads, the Curtainbox Theatre Company's Time Stands Still); Patrick Gimm (Playcrafters' The Trouble with Cats, the Prenzie Players' The Rover); Mark Ruebling (Quad City Music Guild's Curtains, Countryside Community Theatre's Gypsy); Allison Swanson (St. Ambrose University's alumni presentation of You Can't Take It with You, the Curtainbox's Wit); and, in her area-theatre debut, Sara Tubbs (ComedySportz's "Sketchville" ensemble).

Only Elliott, who played Barbara in the springtime comedy boom, has performed in a previous Workshop production, and Danner is thrilled to have her joined by eight area talents appearing in their first show for the company.

"This season," Danner says, "we began holding open auditions for every production, and we were overjoyed to have such a strong turnout for Last Call. It has been a delight to work with both longtime colleagues and performers we haven't had the chance to collaborate with before.

"Each time an actor appears for the first time in a Workshop production, they bring new ideas that make the theatre more dynamic and exciting. We're sure our patrons are going to enjoy this incredible cast."

As with the Workshop's five previous productions, Last Call will be presented under the company's popular "Pay What It's Worth" policy, which allows patrons to determine their own ticket prices following each performance.

, call (563)650- 2396 or e-mail qctheatreworkshop@gmail.com, or visit QCTheatreWorkshop.org

Last Call: The Songs of Stephen Sondheim performances

Friday, November 1, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, November 2, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, November 3, 3 p.m.

Friday, November 8, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, November 9, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, November 10, 3 p.m.

Friday, November 15, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, November 16, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, November 17, 3 p.m.

QC Theatre Workshop

1730 Wilkes Avenue, Davenport, Iowa, 52804

(563)650-2396

info@QCTheatreWorkshop.org

QCTheatreWorkshop.org

Facebook.com/QCTheatreWorkshop

Having recently completed the run of its acclaimed presentation of How I Learned to Drive, Davenport's QC
Theatre Workshop is gearing up for its second and third productions in the company's 2013-14 season: Last
Call: The Songs of Stephen Sondheim, running November 1 through 17, and True West, with auditions for the
January show taking place on October 19.

With Last Call: The Songs of Stephen Sondheim, co-creators Tyson Danner (the Workshop's Artistic Director
and Last Call's music director) and Mike Schulz (Last Call's director) have fashioned an homage to the Tony-,
Grammy-, and Pulitzer Prize-winning composer/lyricist that is a showcase for some of Sondheim's finest musical achievements, sung by a cast of nine of the Quad Cities' most dynamic performers.

Last Call 's cast features: Erin Churchill (Circa '21's Irving Berlin's White Christmas, the District Theatre's Avenue Q); Don Denton (Circa '21's Miracle on 34th Street and The Full Monty); Angela Elliott (the Workshop's boom, the District Theatre's Company); James Fairchild (Circa '21's Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story, the District Theatre's Rent); Kim Furness (Circa '21's The King & I, the Curtainbox Theatre Company'sTime Stands Still); Patrick Gimm (Playcrafters' The Trouble with Cats, the Prenzie Players' The Rover); Mark Ruebling (Quad City Music Guild's Curtains, Countryside Community Theatre's Gypsy); Allison Swanson (St. Ambrose University's You Can't Take It with You, the Curtainbox's Wit); and, in her area-theatre debut, Sara Tubbs (ComedySportz's "Sketchville" ensemble).

Employing instantly recognizable and less familiar songs from such works as Sweeney Todd, Into the Woods,
Company, and even the film Dick Tracy (for which Sondheim won an Oscar for Best Original Song), the songs
of Last Call find spouses, lovers, friends, and strangers crossing paths, reminiscing, and connecting over the
show's 90-minute running length. Through beautiful music and haunting emotion, Last Call explores themes
frequently addressed in the Sondheim canon - particularly the intertwined joy and heartbreak of romantic love-
and runs November 1 through 17, with Friday and Saturday performances at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday performances at 3 p.m.

Meanwhile, two weeks prior to Last Call's opening, the theatre will host auditions for its January production (dates TBD) of the dark comedy True West, which will take place at the QC Theatre Workshop (1730 Wilkes Avenue, Davenport) at 1 p.m. on Saturday, October 19.

Written by Pulitzer Prize-winner Sam Shepard, True West is an intense, funny, and explosive tale of warring brothers, Hollywood screenwriting, and the frequently tricky, maddening, and dangerous bonds shared by
family. Shepard's Tony-nominated script will also be given a rather unusual presentation at the Workshop, as
the actors cast in the leading roles of Austin and Lee will play both characters during the show's run - the determination as to who-plays-which-role will be based on the results of nightly coin tosses held 10 minutes
before the performances begin.

True West calls for three men (ages 20s and/or older) and one woman (age 40 or older). Those auditioning
should be prepared to read from the script, and are asked to prepare a dramatic monologue of two minutes or
fewer. Résumés and headshots are welcome, but not required.

As with the Workshop's five previous productions, both Last Call and True West will be presented under the
company's popular "Pay What It's Worth" policy, which allows patrons to determine their own ticket prices following each performance.

For more information on performances of Last Call: The Songs of Stephen Sondheim or auditions for True West, contact Tyson Danner at (563)650-2396 or qctheatreworkshop@gmail.com,or visit QCTheatreWorkshop.org.

True West auditions

Saturday, October 19, 1 p.m.

Last Call: The Songs of Stephen Sondheim performances

Friday, November 1, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, November 2, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, November 3, 3 p.m.

Friday, November 8, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, November 9, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, November 10, 3 p.m.

Friday, November 15, 7:30 p.m.

Saturday, November 16, 7:30 p.m.

Sunday, November 17, 3 p.m.
A Green River Flows Through the QC Theatre Workshop, July 5 through 14
When the QC Theatre Workshop debuts its world-premiere presentation of A Green River, running at the Davenport venue July 5 through 14, author Aaron Randolph III will celebrate the end of a lengthy journey, as he's spent the last five years writing, re-writing, and continually developing his powerful combat-veteran drama.
Yet considering that the production's rehearsal process, as Randolph says, has been a truly collaborative effort between himself, director Daniel DP Sheridan, and the show's five-person cast - with entire scenes sometimes shaped primarily through improvisation - he won't be celebrating alone.
"Everyone has contributed to the finished product," says Randolph, "either through making suggestions for dialogue changes, or helping organize the material in more effective ways, or reinterpreting lines in ways I never would've imagined on my own. And while this sort of collaboration can sometimes turn 'simple fixes' into major undertakings, the end result is a much stronger play."
Adds Sheridan, "The depth brought to this production by the artists involved is what makes this one of the most dynamic theatrical pieces I've ever been involved with. There have been some heated discussions and disagreements, but they've only made us delve even deeper into this story."
A Green River centers on the character of Erik (portrayed by Thomas Alan Taylor), a young Army veteran who has returned from overseas to a world he now struggles to recognize. Told through a kaleidoscopic blend of present-day sequences, flashbacks, memories, and dreams, the 90-minute drama explores the frequently harsh realities of being a soldier, a husband, a son, a brother, and an expectant father - obligations that weigh heavily on Erik's already troubled mind.
Yet despite A Green River's weighty material, Sheridan states, "The script is incredibly engaging and really captures the scope of Erik's life. And in any life, there are moments of great joy and sorrow. I really think the audience will have a full emotional experience, because this play is heartbreaking, funny, scary, honest, dangerous, and thrilling."
"The show is all about very human people dealing with wide ranges of emotions," adds Randolph, whose production also features Jessica Sheridan, Joe Goodall, Jessica Denney, and Mike Schulz as significant figures in Erik's life. "So while there are some intense moments, there's also a great deal of love and humor in the play. I actually hope people find themselves laughing a lot during the course of the show."
Taylor, whose character is seen at many different ages over a two-decade period, is himself no stranger to the process of working on debuting scripts, as the actor appeared in five original theatrical productions as a student at the University of Iowa.
"Being part of a premiere really pushes you to re-attach to the role of storyteller," says Taylor, "because it's the only time the story itself is being developed along with the production. And it's very rewarding to be part of something that's never been done before. There's a higher sense of ownership for all of us, especially since this process has involved so much improvisation."
As for the role he has been entrusted with, Taylor says, "I love the challenge of bringing clarity and specificity to Erik's journey. It's extremely challenging to cover a 20-year arc, a harrowing struggle with civilian stresses, and the suffering of a modern American soldier all within the script's stream-of-consciousness structure. Aaron has done tremendous work, and being able to give breath to Erik through his words is quite an honor."
A Green River is also a considerable technical challenge, with the show's sprawling riverfront set, lighting, and original sound effects and music - composed by Randolph himself - contributing greatly to the show's tone.
"We are focused on using the technical elements to heighten the psychological state of Erik's character," says Sheridan. "We want the audience to not only witness, but feel, the stress Erik is under. And we're really pushing ourselves as artists in terms of expanding the experience at appropriate moments. We're holding nothing back in our design options."
Adds Randolph, "The play is about blending very natural things with very surreal things, and I'm trying to blend sound and music so there's a constant flow between reality and memory.
"I kind of have this sword-forging mentality about how I like to work," he continues. "When you make a sword, you shape the metal into place only to heat it back up and fold the metal again. By doing this over and over again, you end up with something that's effective and strong. And hopefully, that's what we're making here."
A Green River will be staged at the QC Theatre Workshop (1730 Wilkes Avenue, Davenport, IA) Friday, July 5, through Sunday, July 14, with show times at 7:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, and 3 p.m. on Sundays. Due to the play's adult language and violent scenes, this debuting drama is recommended for mature audiences, and as with the QC Theatre Workshop's previous productions, the show will be presented under the company's unique "Pay What It's Worth" policy, allowing audience members to determine their own ticket prices following each performance based on the quality of their theatrical experience.
For reservations and more information on A Green River, please call (563)650-2396 or e-mail info@QCTheatreWorkshop.org, and visit QCTheatreWorkshop.org and Facebook.com/QCTheatreWorkshop.
A Green River performance dates:
Friday, July 5 - 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, July 6 - 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, July 7 - 3 p.m.
Friday, July 12 - 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, July 13 - 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, July 14 - 3 p.m.
Location:
QC Theatre Workshop
1730 Wilkes Avenue, Davenport, Iowa, 52804
(563)650-2396
info@QCTheatreWorkshop.org
QCTheatreWorkshop.org
Facebook.com/QCTheatreWorkshop

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