Playcrafters opens season with laughter and "Lend Me a Tenor"


Share
Originally Posted Online: Jan. 06, 2011, 12:35 pm
Last Updated: Jan. 06, 2011, 12:41 pm
Comment on this story | Print this story | Email this story

Submitted press release.

MOLINE -- Playcrafters Barn Theatre next production is the Ken Ludwig comedy "Lend Me a Tenor." The show runs Jan. 14-15-16 and 21-22-23 with performances at 7:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays evenings and matinees at 3 p.m. on Sundays.

"Lend Me a Tenor" first premiered in London in 1986 and then on Broadway in 1989; it has since been translated into 16 languages and has been produced on stage in 25 countries around the world. Andrew Lloyd Webber wrote a musical based on the play by Ken Ludwig in London, 1988, and the original version of the play enjoyed a Broadway revival in 2010.

The plot centers on opera star Italian tenor Signor Tito Merelli—known to his fans as "Il Stupendo"—whose arrival is cause for great excitement at the 1934 gala fundraiser for the Cleveland Grand Opera Company. Merelli is slated to sing the title role in Othello, and the company views him as a savior. Saunders, the company's general manager, anticipates huge income, someone else hopes for back-stair influence, and a fan longs for a chance to express her admiration.

Things begin to unravel when the star's hot-headed wife leaves him and the distraught tenor is accidentally given a double-dose of tranquilizers to calm down, rendering him comatose instead. Desperate, Saunders presses his hapless assistant Max into filling in for Il Stupendo. Dressed in costume and wearing the blackface makeup the role calls for, Max seems set to play a passable Othello—until Merelli wakes up. What follows is a door-slamming chain-reaction of mistaken identity, farcical plot twists, double entendres and innuendoes.

Donna Weeks, Moline, directs the play and also designs lighting for the show. Cast members include Tom Naab and Cindy Ramos-Parmley, Moline; John VanDeWoestyne and Diane Greenwood, Geneseo; Angie Keeney, Blue Grass; Vincent Briley and Sara Laufer, Davenport; and Chris Tracy, DeWitt.

Production staff includes co-producer Gale Smith, stage manager Karen Dubberke, music consultant Laura Crumbleholme, lead set builder Dean Spillum, light board operator Jordan Smith, production assistant Sydney Crumbleholme, set construction/painting helpers Craig Cohoon, Jesse Cohoon and Jeremy Koester, all of Moline; co-producer Lexi Holtzer, set dresser Alex Wolking, props/backstage crewperson Alysha McElroy-Hodges, Rock Island; sound designer Paul Workman, Silvis.

Tickets for the show can be reserved by phoning Playcrafters at (309) 762-0330 or by visiting the website at www.playcrafters.com.




















 



Local events heading








  Today is Wednesday, Aug. 20, the 232nd day of 2014. There are 133 days left in the year.
1864 -- 150 years ago: Quite a number of Negroes have lately been brought here by abolition offers returning from the army in violation of the laws of the state.
1889 -- 125 years ago: Miss Tillie Denkmann, of Rock Island, was making plans to accompany a Davenport family on a tour of Europe.
1914 -- 100 years ago: The German advance into Belgium was going apparently without serious check. The American ambassador at Berlin published a denial of the charge that Americans had been ill-treated in Germany.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Seventy-two members of Rock Island High School's 1939 graduating class are preparing to enter college — 34 of them at Augustana.
1964 -- 50 years ago: One of the oldest buildings in Milan, which for a number of years has housed the Milan Hotel, will be razed to make way for a modern, two-story office structure.
1989 -- 25 years ago: Some are blaming it on the sudden influx of insects and the extreme humidity. Still others say the invasion was inspired by a recent movie. But whatever the reason, the Quad-Cities is swarming with bats.




(More History)