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Quarterly Newsletter of Theatre in the Woods, Ltd.
Auditions were held at the Quam on May 12th and 13th. This year’s by Deb Shipman cast will consist of area students in This year’s Theatre in the Woods seventh through twelfth grade. youth production will be Many talented youth auditioned, “Aladdin”, a fast paced and funny showcasing their experience from version of the "Arabian Nights" past TiTW productions. story by William Glennon. The cast includes: Aladdin and his In addition to putting on a great friends, a dancing monkey, the production, developing future theaprincess, two genies and a village ter leaders is a goal of directors of flamboyant and mysterious Karen Collins and Deb Shipman. characters. They are encouraging students to June 25 26 27
develop their skills in all areas of the production. From set design to opening night, theater magic happens with the hard work of many. If you are interested in spending a few hours sharing your expertise with the students, please contact Karen Collins at 635-6713 or Deb Shipman at 635-9500. Evening rehearsals will be held the last two weeks of June with the play taking stage for three 7:00pm performances starting Thursday, June 25th. “Aladdin” is a show for all ages and we hope you will join us for an evening of Aladdin and his friends.
by Carolyn Burnett
That's us at TITW! But put quotations around the word: "Fools” is the title of the Neil Simon comedy that put Theatre in the Woods on the cultural map of Washburn County as our very first production back in 1990.
new home at the Erika Quam Memorial Theater in 1999.
This "Fools" will differ from the second, as the second differed from the first. Directed again by Carolyn Burnett, Patti Fox directed "Fools" 2. Auditions are on the calendar for Wednesday and Thursday evenings, August 26 and 27, beginning at 6:30. The director's hope is to bring back actors from both preceding productions as well as to cast some relatives of those youngsters in the 1990 cast, and introduce newcomers to the TITW audience. The production will run two weekends in October, 8-11 and 17, 18. Scripts are available for perusal. More information can be obtained from Carolyn at 715-354-3803 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
"Fools" is the Neil Simon comedy that ushered in our second decade as the opening production in our
Now, "Fools" is the Neil Simon comedy scheduled to resurface as we begin the celebration of the completion of two decades and begin a third. Yes, 2009-2010 will be Theatre in the Woods' 20th season!!!
ERNEST in LOVE
APRIL 2, 3 & 4 LYRICS BY ANNE CROSWELL MUSIC BY LEE POCKNESS
FRONT ROW: Laurie Bakkum (director), MB King, Don Bruce, Laura Bruce,
Emily Organ, Troy Benham, Tam Smith (accompanist), Paul Dolan
BACK ROW: Alex Peck, Cambria Groehler, Roger Sweeney, Sue Bigelow,
Aaron Engstrand, Marilyn Loder, Emily Muus, Rose Bauman, Del Bakkum
Curtain Call is the quarterly
Theatre in the Woods, Limited P.O. Box 156 Shell Lake, WI 54871 Phone (715)468-4387 Carolyn Burnett, President, 354-3803 Carolyn Seehafer, Vice President Kathy Mitchell, Secretary Patti Fox, Treasurer Margaret Olsgard, Curtain Call Editor, (715) 635-8171 Bob Olsgard, Curtain Call Tech Guru
Theatre in the Woods TITW Field Trip “The Two Gentlemen Skews Statistics! of Verona” by Carolyn Burnett
The accepted number for the life time of a community theatre is 5 years, or maybe even fewer. TITW is moving into its TWENTIETH season this fall. What do you remember as high points for your association with TITW? As audience, on your list of favorites? As an actor, what role was the most challenging, the most fun? What backstage memories stand out for those who have done that important work? Do you think you might win the prize for the most productions seen over the past twenty years? the most acting roles? the most baking for concessions? Tell us your memories of Theatre in the Woods. Tell us what you think TITW has contributed to the community the past two decades. Tell us what having a vibrant community theatre means to you. Tell us any and everything! Send comments to the message taker at 715 468 4387, or send to the Curtain Call editor at email@example.com. Then watch for the September issue to compare your thoughts with others. We want to hear from you!
(ed. note: Also see titw.org for this discussion thread on our website. Look for “20 Years of TITW Stories” under theDiscussions tab and share your stories.) 3
at the Guthrie Theater
by Carolyn Burnett
Curtain Call is published in March,
June, September and December. Copy deadline is on the 15th of the previous month. Submit text as a simple, unformatted e-mail or attached Word document. Photos or other artwork should be sent as an attached file, preferably JPEG file format. Send to:
Marge Kolbek, who intended to attend the March 7th field trip but wasn’t able to, sent the following questions “So how was the play? Did the 20th century staging work for you? “ Some answers are provided by the following comments solicited from the group of 15 people who made the trip to Minneapolis with TITW : “What a wonderful day - experiencing the unique and expansive Guthrie! I loved the forever view of the River and city. The highlight for me was enjoying the play in the company of friends and laughing out loud. Let's do "this" again next year.” - Marie
Check out our our website: titw.org
Sign in and be a part of our online TITW Community. Shawn Tisdell, Webmaster. (715) 822-3222
Come visit us at our home,
The Erika Quam Memorial Theater 605 First St Shell Lake, WI
RENT the QUAM!
Contact us about rental rates and availability of our facilities for your event.
“I was really impressed with how much Dowling (Guthrie artistic director and director of this production) was able to augment one
(Continued on page 5)
June, 2009 hearted process and production. It’s clear the production will not reuse the fabulous Elizabethan costumes from our“12th Night”, but neither will the actors be in contemporary 2010 clothing. More than that the directors are not saying, except that the music of the period chosen will play a significant part.
Anatomy of a Production: Part Two
Much Ado about Brunch
by Karen Kaufman & Carolyn Burnett
(for Part One, see the March issue of Curtain Call)
As with “12th Night”, a series of acting workshops will be held, It could have been the three kinds beginning with one on Septemof quiche. Or that “Much Ado ber 12. Led by Burnett and about Nothing” is the “awesomest Kaufman, this workshop will be play in the world”. Perhaps the Next on the agenda for the diopen to all interested actors and reason lies in someone having rectors have been a couple of directors and will focus on the Middle English as her second lanmeetings to discuss script, setenhancement of basic acting guage. No matter what drew them ting, and style. During a recent skills. The second workshop, there, some fifteen hardy souls trip to Chicago, the pair spent tentatively scheduled for gathered around a table in October 24, is planned to the basement of the Quam cover movement and the on Saturday morning, April use of the body to develop By William Shakespeare 4 for a collective read of characters, with the third Shakespeare’s comedy. workshop, tentatively Auditions: January 9, 2010, devoted Amidst laughter at the repSATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 19 to “Speaking Shakeartee of Beatrice and Bene9 AM TO 11 AM speare”. Workshop two dick, hisses at the evil naWEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 23 will be open to actors in ture of Don John, and 6:30 PM TO 8:30 PM. PM. both the “Fools” cast and groans at how easily the cast of “Much Ado”. Shakespeare’s characters Actors Workshops: Leaders of these workcan be fooled, directors SEPTEMBER 12, shops will be announced at Karen Kaufman and CaroOCTOBER 24 a later date. lyn Burnett pointed out a JANUARY 9 few cuts to be made in the Auditions for “Much Ado script. When asked why, onstage: about Nothing” are schedthe directors explained the MARCH 26-28 , APRIL 2-4 262uled from 9 AM to 11 AM cuts were for clarification Saturday, September 19, when the meaning of the and from 6:30 PM to 8:30 PM line would be so obscure to a about 12 hours discussing key Wednesday, September 23, in modern audience as to distract aspects of the production in adthe basement of the Quam. attention. As the morning prodition to much in depth internet gressed the readers easily underresearch. Priorities include auKeep watch on coming issues of stood. dience accessibility, respect for Curtain Call for continuing artithe Shakespearean tradition, cles on the Anatomy of a ProThis collective reading encourand commitment to a fun, lightduction. aged some of those present to
check out copies of the play for further reading on their own. Anyone else interested in obtaining a script, or wishing more information, should call either Karen at 635 7641 or Carolyn at 354 3803.
“Much Ado about Nothing”
(FIELD TRIP, Continued from page 3)
Curtain Call “1) The new Guthrie is intimidating in its size and a bit cold, but I love the "magic" graphics on the walls and ceilings. 2) I've never seen Shakespeare so bastardized, but I thoroughly enjoyed the Guthrie's 2 Gents. It was a bit schizo with the 50s stuff + many of Shakespeare's lines, but somehow it worked as a piece of real entertainment. I loved the set, the music, and the dancing. The cast looked like they were having as good a time performing as we were having watching them. 3) I love a happy ending...” -Carol “I was pleasantly surprised because I'm not that into Shakespeare. It was very entertaining. I loved the costuming (of course that's where my eye goes first) and the actors did a great job playing to the audience. The "new" Guthrie is a beautiful building, it sits right on the river and the view is wonderful. I think the only drawback, and not a problem for me (smile), was the seats are very close together and not made for tall people. The
June, 2009 Quam has them beat in that department. I love the idea of seeing a play or doing anything with my theatre family that is outside of doing a production of our own and jump at the chance. It is a good way to get to know each other better and to meet new people who join us.” -Megan “My first reaction to the Guthrie was how easy it was to get there and park, and then the beautiful view from the "bridge". This was not anything I expected, (crowded, old, ..). The production itself was slick with the clever premise and use of tech available. However, somehow, and I don't even know how, but somehow I expected the acting to be better. Makes me think at the acting level things aren't really that different…” -Chuck So, a good time was had by all. This was not the first such field trip for TITW, nor will it be the last. Please send your suggestions at any time for such another adventure!
of Shakespeare's earlier less developed plays into an afternoon of fun for the audience. Shakespeare would have approved!” -Roger “Though we often talk about getting over to the Guthrie more frequently, the trips never seem to materialize for want of planning. The opportunity of the group trip was just the impetus we needed. Thanks for planning this and getting us off dead center. We enjoyed the whole experience immensely. Great antidote for March Cabin Fever in the Northwoods!” -Gary and Diane Peterson “I thoroughly enjoyed it. Major visual stimulation and way accessible entertainment after uncertainty about dealing with Shakespearean language and heavy doses of archaic puns. After reading the totally goofy play and scholars comments about it really being about the friendship of young men, the 1950s spin on it may be close to what I imagine the original rollicking audiences expected of these comedies circa 1600: jokes and more jokes imbedded in a back stabbing romantic adventure. Throw in the Guthrie’s musical (doowap) concepts and the emotional rollercoaster of the woman playing Julia (art that makes me cry gets bonus points) and I start thinking opera for masses (of course legitimized by the word SHAKESPEARE)” -Sam
June, 2009 Following lunch and on into the evening, hour long excerpts from five different plays (produced by five different community theatres) were shown and “adjudicated”. Fancy word for constructive criticism. On Sunday, awards for the best of this and the best of that were given out, with two plays selected to go on to the regional AACT Fest. Eventually, as plays are selected at regional festivals and then the national festival, some community theatre group is faced with the thrill and challenge of taking a show beyond “the road” over to a foreign country for the international festival. Burnett and Fox talked about whether TITW should ever contemplate entering a play at the Wisconsin level of AACT Festivals. While they started out saying, “We’re not about competition”, their minds were somewhat opened by the argument that “it’s not about competition. It’s about the growth factor which comes with the opportunity to play to different audiences.” There’s no doubt TITW would stand up well in comparison with the plays seen at WACTFest 2009!
Wisconsin AACT Fest 2009
by Carolyn Burnett & Patti Fox
“Mix ten nuns, two super heroes, four Irish accents, three men in tights and a woman with a pair of tongs and what do you get? Wisconsin’s 2009 state AACTFest.” So begins the Wisconsin Association of Community Theatre current newsletter. Send in two representatives from Theatre in the Woods, and you get the following highlights of the workshops offered during the February 27-March 1 American Association of Community Theatre biannual state festival, held at the River Arts Center in Prairie du Sac. Patti Fox, current TITW treasurer and Carolyn Burnett, prez, opted to attend the 8:00 AM workshop on “The Art of the Monologue”, looking for clues on directing one person shows or those heavy on the use of monologue. Both came away impressed with the young talent from Sauk Prairie high school and with ideas for augmenting TITW’s own summer youth theatre project. At 10:00 o’clock the Fox Burnett team split up. Patti took in the “ETC: Lighting!” workshop led by Spencer Lyons of Electronic Theater Controls of Middleton. This company manufactures and sells through such dealerships as Norcostco in Minneapolis a full spectrum of theatre lighting technology. The company’s focus on outreach training parallels
TITW's in-house training offered by Bob Olsgard. Patti saw potential to bring that training (ours and/or ETCs) to a combination of theatre personnel in our region, including the high schools. She, herself, is keen to get a better handle on just what TITW owns and uses, as well as to help establish an annual maintenance schedule for all our tech equipment. Burnett, always on the look out for directorial insights, went to the “Creating Ensemble” workshop led by Lauren Rose of UW Baraboo. The phrase “opening positions of leadership” struck Burnett as just what TITW has been pretty good at over the years, but needs to continue to be diligent about. This workshop was a very active one, with the group trying out several different theatre “games” geared to creating an ensemble whole from a group of previously unacquainted individuals. These games can be used to cohere a board of directors as well as a cast of actors.
Another Successful QUAM DAY
by Megan Connors
To those of you who were present and those of you who missed it… drum roll please…did we get rid of stuff or what!! The biggest job we have tackled in some time was successfully completed with the help of 10 volunteers. Those volunteers were: John Cook, Carolyn Burnett, Patti Fox, Carol Seehafer, Shirley Hile, Eva Olsgard, Troy Benham, Thorin Benham, and Jean Speaker. The storeroom (don’t even call it the shed) was actually moved out almost entirely onto the lawn. I was a bit worried when it took about two and a half hours to get all the stuff out of the room, knowing it all had to go somewhere in the next four or five hours. But much discussion and brute strength seemed to make it disappear or be arranged nicely back in the room. You can actually walk in there now versus crawling over stuff. Hey let’s face it; there were things we
To the Dump
haven’t seen since we moved in. It’s amazing!! At the same time things were being gone through to put in our rummage sale this fall (watch for the date), yard work was also done, as well as straightening up the workshop (don’t even refer to it as the garage). So…if you are missing what is being said behind the scenes, so to speak, you really need to attend one of our Quam Days… they are so much fun and you learn the inside jokes. You don’t have to know anything about theater, just show up and you will be assigned a task, and enjoy a few hours of fun with friends new and old. Hey, you even get a free lunch (well maybe not entirely free - you are working, after all)! A big thank you to Jean Speaker our master gardener for working on the flower beds, as well as Troy and Thorin Benham for hauling away items no longer needed. The next Quam Day is set for Saturday August 29 (9:00-3:00). Come for an hour or all day. It’s a great no pressure way to get to know us and/or keep in touch with each other outside of working on a production.
Bigger, Better, Brighter
by Bob Olsgard
Directors take note; thanks to the intrepid souls who attended our recent basic lighting workshops, your lighting team just got bigger, better and brighter. If you weren’t there, you missed out on the fun of positioning lights high atop our new megaladder, programming our new easy to use controller and other equally exhilarating thrills too numerous to elucidate here. For those of you who couldn’t make our first two lighting workshops, fret not. We’ll be doing it again in the future. Stay tuned to Curtain Call for future lighting news.
Toss or Keep?
IN THE WORKS…
Christmas Show ’09
“It's A Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play” by Joe Landry will be directed by Roger Sweeney for the 2009 Christmas season. Production dates will be: Nov 27-28-29 and Dec 3-45-6. Auditions are scheduled for Tues, Sept 29, 6:30pm 8:00 (2-3 men and 2-3 women). Watch for more information in the September Curtain Call.
TITW Picnic July 14
Come join the fun at our annual picnic on July 14 at 6:00 p.m. at the Quam. Bring a lawn chair, a dish to pass, and anything you would like to grill. The grills and beverages will be provided. A short business meeting will follow.
Pretty Good Party Anniversary Style!
by Shirley Hile
Here’s a heads up for you! Many of you have attended our Pretty Good Party in the past. Now it’s time to mark Saturday, September 19, 2009 on your calendars. This will be our very special Pretty Good Party - Anniversary Style. Join us for hors d’oeuvres and fun as we celebrate TitW’s first 20 years. Learn some of our history from the founders of our organization and get a sneak peak at what we have in store to start our third decade! We couldn’t have done it without you and we don’t want to celebrate without you. Did you mark your calendars yet? See you at the Quam!
Upcoming Events at Erika Quam Theater Call 468-4387 to Reserve
June 9 TITW Monthly Meeting 7 p.m. June 25,26 & 27 Alladin onstage 7 p.m. July 14 TITW Annual Picnic & Meeting 6 p.m. August 11 TITW Monthly Meeting 7 p.m. August 26 & 27 Auditions for Fools 6:30 p.m. September 8 TITW Monthly Meeting 7 p.m. September 12 Actor’s workshop 9-12 a.m. September 19 Pretty Good Party-Anniversary Style TBA September 19 Auditions: Much Ado About Nothing 9-11 a.m. September 23 Auditions: Much Ado About Nothing 6:30-8:30p.m. September 29 Auditions: It’s A Wonderful Life 6:30-8 p.m. October 8-11 & 17,18 Fools onstage TBA March 26-28 & April 2-4 Much Ado About Nothing onstage TBA
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