Monday, February 12, 2007

D.C. Doings

Big night in the old town tonight, as The Shakespeare Theatre Company's series of staged readings presents "Edward III," one of the bard's apocryphal plays. Wonder if Joe Banno will sneak in to grab some pointers for his upcoming full production of the piece at Washington Shakespeare Company.

But the bigger to-do tonight will be the announcement of the nominations for this year's Helen Hayes Awards. Just a prediction, but I imagine the show to beat will be Round House's "Prayer for Owen Meany," an epic staging of a difficult piece produced with verve and heart. Expect multiple noms.

This year will be a calm one for my nerves. The only local performance I gave which was eligible flew completely under the radar, and deservedly so. I doubt we had 200 people see the thing the entire four week run!

Better luck next year...

Orson's party

I caught the matinee of "Orson's Shadow" today, thank you Round House for your 10 dollar tix for Equity members. I love all backstage stories, and Jerry Whiddon's production revives the hunch that all of us, no matter what the level of prestige, experience the theatrical life with a mixture of ego and insecurity. Kudos to the cast for playing the play, and thus reflecting their characters in a much more realistic fashion than if they had resorted to simple impersonation.

Kathryn Kelley's parting shots reminded me of the chaotic callback this weekend out at Baltimore Shakespeare Festival. Dozens of actors were called at the same time, and expected to wait for their moment with the director in a cramped ante-room which had maybe 5 chairs. The director did not seem to know who or why anyone had been called back, and the time it took to try to pair actors up with acting partners effectively was, in a word, wasted. Kimberley, where are you?