By Tom Gibbons
The Sweet Sound of Democracy
Barelas' newest organization for performance and the arts, the Mother Road Theatre Company, will be kicking off its first season at the end of the month, and the community has been invited to take part in selecting the company's debut season. This weekend, Nov. 30-Dec. 2, and next, Dec. 7-9, six previews will showcase plays that will make up the 2008 season under the broader theme of “The Open Road.”
“We go for an ensemble approach to our performances,” says Kristin Tricky, aka “de la O,” co-executive director and board president of Mother Road. “We don't want people to vote on a play solely because their favorite actor or director is involved. We look at each performance as a piece of theater.” To this honorable end, the actors and crew will be shuffled for the final performances when they are officially scheduled.
“The top-rated play will become our debut,” says Julia Thudium, artistic director and founder of the company, “and the rest will be grouped to complement the season.” This means not putting all of your extravagant musicals and adventures in one basket and all of the low-key, high-brow satire in the other. Plays to be “prebuted” (a combination of a preview and a debut), with full productions coming in 2008, are The Fair Maid of the West by Thomas Heywood, an epic pirate adventure adapted by James C. Leary and Damasco Rodriguez; Hellcab by Will Kern, about a greenhorn cabbie facing the madness of Chicago at Christmas; The Weir by Conor McPherson, a pub-stranded, evening of beer-soaked ghost stories that turn real; On The Verge by Eric Overmyer, a Victorian adventure featuring three lady heroines and their travels to Africa, the Himalayas and beyond; Angels Fall by Lanford Wilson, in which a college professor and his young wife find themselves staying at a mission church in remote New Mexico after a nuclear “incident” closes the highway; The Odyssey by David Farr, in which the legendary hero is interrogated by immigration about his “travels” from Troy to the Underworld and beyond.
The prebut will take place at 8 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. on Sundays at The Filling Station (1024 Fourth Street SW). Admission is free for these benefit performances, and there is a suggested $15 donation. The official schedule for 2008 will be announced on the Mother Road Theatre Company's website, www.motherroad.org. Keep an eye on the site for additional events at The Filling Station, such as fine art exhibitions, performance and stagecraft workshops and many more for 2008.
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