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THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST

 

Joseph Fuqua, Johanna McKay and Susan Clark
                                   Photo courtesy of Rubicon Theatre Company

Susan Clark
Photo courtesy of Rubicon Theatre Company and Santa Barbara News-Press


Joseph Fuqua as Earnest and Brian McDonald, as Algernon


Brian McDonald, as Algernon, gazes at 
Carolyn A. Palmer, who plays Cecily, 
in the Rubicon Theatre Company's 
production of "The Importance of
 Being Earnest" at The Laurel in Ventura.

Rod Lathim / Special to The Star

Brian McDonald, Johanna McKay, Joseph Fuqua, and Susan Clark

Brian McDonald, Johanna McKay, Joseph Fuqua, and Susan Clark

 


Received Karyl Lynn's e-mail of RTC's 12/16/03 Crossings newsletter, which contained this update on "Earnest":

7. Cast Announced for The Importance of Being Earnest

Casting is now complete for Oscar Wilde’s witty comedyThe Importance of Being Earnest. Under the direction of Michael Addison, the cast features Emmy Award-winning actress Susan Clark as Lady Bracknell, Joseph Fuqua as Jack, Brian McDonald as Algernon, Johanna McKay as Gwendolyn and Carolyn Palmer as Cecily. Other cast members include Patricia Cullen, Philip Davidson, Robert E. “Doc” Reynolds and Rudolph Willrich.

The Importance of Being Earnest opens Saturday, February 28 and continues through Sunday, March 28, 2004. For tickets, call the box office at (805) 667-2900.

 

 

 

A link to The Blend Magazine's listing on the show:

http://www.theblendmagazine.com/events/california/ventura.htm


EMMY AWARD-WINNER CROSSES THE RUBICON STAGE - Ventura’s beloved Rubicon Theatre Company is set to unveil another smash success with Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest, February 26 through March 28, 2004, starring Emmy-Award winner Susan Clark. As the region’s premiere professional theater, this young Equity company presents a year-round schedule of classic and contemporary dramas, comedies and world premieres in a charming former church built in the 1920s. While the award-winning Rubicon Theatre Company gains national recognition and receives regular rave reviews in prominent general and entertainment publications, it also boasts a host of luminaries that grace its stage including Jack Lemmon, Stacy Keach, Linda Purl, Harold Gould, Stephanie Zimbalist and others, who love the intimate nature of the theatre, the proximity to Los Angeles and Ventura’s small-town ambience. Because theatre capacity is limited to 200, advance reservations are highly recommended. This is an ideal outing for groups, too, so call ahead. Ventura’s Pierpont Inn and Marriott Beach Hotel both offer Rubicon Theatre packages as well.


A link to the the barkerductions.com page on RTC, featuring information on The Importance of Being Earnest:

http://www.barkerductions.com/theaters/rubicon/season.html


Received Karyl Lynn's Rubicon Theatre Company Crossings Newsletter today (2/16/04), and here is what it has to say about "Earnest":


Susan Clark Helms Cast of Outstanding “Ernest” Professionals

The cast of The Importance of Being Earnest features Emmy® Award-winning actress Susan Clark as the imposing Lady Bracknell. Ms. Clark returns to Rubicon having previously appeared in The Glass Menagerie, Dancing at Lughnasa and as Sook in A Christmas Memory (with Robert Morse). Ms. Clark studied at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London and worked in the English repertory system early in her career. A contract with Universal Studios brought her to Los Angeles where she starred in 20 feature films, including, “Tell Them Willie Boy is Here,” “Coogan’s Bluff,” and “Night Moves.”  She appeared on the highly successful TV comedy series “Webster,” and received an Emmy® Award for her performance in “Babe,” the story of Olympic golfer Babe Zaharias. Ms. Clark’s passion for theatre frequently brings her back to the boards. She has worked at the Mark Taper Forum, Williamstown Playhouse, and the Pasadena Playhouse, to name a few. 

 

Other cast members include Rubicon Company members Joseph Fuqua as Jack/Earnest and Brian McDonald as Algernon. Fuqua’s numerous appearances for Rubicon include All My Sons, Art, Old Wicked Songs and The Rainmaker. His other credits include Broadway, Actors Theatre of Louisville and Yale Rep. Mr. MacDonald has appeared on the stages of the Denver Center , Theatre Virginia , the Lyric Stage, La Mirada Performing Arts Center, and the Ahmanson with the Hal Prince musical 3hree. He recently directed Rubicon’s production of Forever Plaid.

 

Johanna McKay, who appears as Gwendolyn, returns to Rubicon having previously performed in Murder in the First. Rubicon newcomers Carolyn Palmer and Patricia Cullen appear respectivley as Cecily and Miss Prism. Philip Davidson who made his Rubicon debut as Ben in The Little Foxes and is a veteran of the Ashland Shakespeare Festival, appears as the Reverend Chausible. Ventura resident and local favorite Robert E. “Doc” Reynolds doubles in the roles of Lane and Merriman.

 

Earnest’s design team includes Set Designer Gary Wissmann, who recently created the set for Rubicon’s production of All My Sons; Costume Designer Marcy Froehlich (who previously designed Rubicon’s Dancing at Lughnasa; Lighting Designer Tom Giamario (whose long history with Rubicon includes All My Sons, Art, The Rainmaker, Old Wicked Songs, and Dancing at Lughnasa.) Make-up and hair design is by Rubicon veteran Judi Lewin (Rubicon’s All My Sons, A Streetcar Named Desire, Dancing at Lughnasa, The Rainmaker and Murder in the First). Sound design is by Steven Cahill whose most recent Rubicon credits include All My Sons and A Streetcar Named Desire, for which he was nominated for an Ovation Award. Production stage manager is Linda M. Tross.


A link to the 2/26/04 LATimes CalendarLive article entitled:"Manners? Oh, that's a laugh" (unfortunately, this is only an abstract, you need to join CalendarLive to get the entire article, and I am not a member at this time:

Manners? Oh, that's a laugh (02/26/04)

STAGE: The Rubicon Theatre Company is visiting a land of wit and wisdom in Oscar Wilde's "The Importance of Being Earnest." Wilde's best-known play deftly sends up manners and mores in Victorian England. Michael Addison directs a cast that includes Emmy winner ...more


A link to the Santa Barbara News-Press interview: "5 Questions ... with Susan Clark":

http://search.newspress.com/2004/02/27/022704_5questions.htm

A link to the 3/4/04 InsideVC/com article entitled:  "Class Act":
http://www1.venturacountystar.com/vcs/culture/article/0,1375,VCS_4316_2701047,00.html

"...British accents vary from simple upper-crust versions to the jaw-breaking, ultra-proper drawl of Joseph Fuqua as Jack, who adds it to a full-blown performance as the conflicted fellow whose constraint barely allows him to propose, though he hints at a looser life away from high society."

3/4/04 Review on InsideVC.com:

Review: "The Importance of Being Earnest"

By Review
March 4, 2004

Rubicon Theatre Company's production of Oscar Wilde's comedy runs 8 p.m. Thursdays through Fridays, 2 and 8 p.m. Saturdays, 2 p.m. Sundays and 7 p.m. Wednesdays through March 28 at The Laurel, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura. Tickets are $25-$45 depending on performance, with discounts for groups, seniors, students and military. Call 667-2900 or visit the Web site, http://www.rubicontheatre.org.


A link to the Santa Barbara News-Press Earnest Review (abstract only - I'm not a subscriber):
http://search.newspress.com/2004/03/06/030604earnest.htm

A link to the 3/3/04 LA Times Review of Earnest entitled: "A true cast of characters" (abstract only - I'm not a subscriber.
http://www.calendarlive.com/stage/cl-et-brandes3mar03,2,3938956.story

 


 

ALL MY SONS

FLASH!!!

Joseph won a 2004 Ovation Award for Best Featured Actor - Play  -  for his performance as George in All My Sons!  See the LA Times article here:

http://www.calendarlive.com/cl-et-ovations17_nov17,2,4402210.htmlstory

and on my Rubicon page!

 


Joseph Fuqua and Faline England in "All My Sons".

Joseph Fuqua and Tom Astor in "All My Sons".

Joseph Fuqua, Faline England and Tom Astor in "All My Sons".

Joseph Fuqua, Faline England and Tom Astor in "All My Sons".

Joseph Fuqua, Faline England and Tom Astor in "All My Sons".

Joseph Fuqua, Faline England and George Ball in "All My Sons"

George Ball and Robin
Pearson Rose star in 
Rubicon Theatre Company's production of "All My Sons", Arthur Miller's drama about 
family conflict and moral responsibility. It begins today (10/9) at The Laurel.

Photo by Tim Swope

Faline England plays Ann Deever and Tom Astor is Chris Keller in Rubicon Theatre Company's production of the Arthur Miller drama "All My Sons."

Photos courtesy of RTC and InsideVC.com

 


UPDATE 10/7/03:

I received Rubicon's RTC Board of Advisors Update Letter today from Karyl Lynn Burns.  Here's what it has to say about All My Sons:

 

ALL MY SONS OPENS NEXT SATURDAY OCTOBER 11 WITH GALA

All My Sons opens on October 11th with a festive opening night gala that will include an after-show party with the cast and crewmembers at the new beachfront restaurant Aloha Steakhouse in Ventura .  As usual, Regina ’s Quality Catering will prepare a spread of delicious treats served during the intermission. If you would like to purchase tickets to the All My Sons gala ($150 per guest), please call Rubicon’s Box Office at 805.667.2900. Seating is limited, so hurry to reserve your tickets.

 

Arthur Miller’s awarding-winning classic, All My Sons directed by Jim O’Neil opens our 6th season. Considered one of Miller’s most powerful dramas, All My Sons is a trenchant and timely story about a family grappling with the loss of one son after World War II. George Ball plays family patriarch Joe Keller who believes “there’s nothin’ bigger than family.” Robin Pearson Rose plays his loving, but fragile wife, Kate. Tom Astor ( Stanley in A Streetcar Named Desire) plays their idealistic younger son and war hero Chris. Into this tightly knit family comes Ann Deever, played by Faline England. Ann’s brother George, played by Joseph Fuqua, arrives bringing revelatory news to the family. Other cast members include Brian Harwell and Sonia Sanz as Frank and Lydia Lubey; and Obie Award-winning actor Tony Miratti and Von Rae Wood as Dr. Jim and Sue Bayliss. Talented young actors Josh Brackett, Bennett Collings and Lucas Souza, the son of Steven and Lynn Kipp, share the role of Bert.

 

All My Sons continues through November 9 Wednesdays at 7 p.m. , Thursdays through Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m.

 


UPDATE 10/9/03:

A link to the InsideVC.com 10/9 article on "All My Sons", entitled:  "Rubicon season to explore human spirit's indefatigable power":

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_2331561,00.html 

"...Ann and her brother George (Rubicon regular Joseph Fuqua) stir up the Kellers' already fragile family balance when they reveal several secrets...."

 

UPDATE 10/14/03:


Received an e-mail this morning, from Steve & Cynde Magidson at RTC.  Steve posted the photo album from the All My Sons Opening Night Gala. Here are a couple of his pictures.


Carlos Sanz (the Rainmaker), Von Rae Wood, Joseph Fuqua (George Deever), Robin Pearson Rose (Kate) and Madelline
Photo courtesy of Steve Magidson and RTC 


David and Diane Grimes, Steve Magdison, Jenny Sullivan and Joseph Fuqua.
Photo courtesy of Steve Magidson and RTC 

Here is a link to the InsideVC.com review entitled:  "Miller time".  It is a combined review of this show and "The Ride Down Mount Morgan" in Santa Barbara:

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/culture/article/0,1375,VCS_4316_2349406,00.html

"The superior cast manages to get the most out of Miller's offhand wit while quietly hinting at the undertow of emotions that will change their lives....Veteran Rubicon actor Joseph Fuqua evokes George's desperation but allows the man to be coaxed briefly from his depression with memories of happier times...." 


A link to the Santa Barbara News-Press 10/16/03 review entitled:  "'All My Sons' resonates with timeless truths":
http://www.search.newspress.com
/2003/10/16/101603allmysons.htm

This is only an abstract.  You need to subscribe to read the full article (which I think is very unfair, when all you want to see is the same day's article), and I cannot afford that right now:

Abstract: "...In all his work, Arthur Miller explores the question of man's responsibility to the community of mankind, and the personal and moral dislocations that result when that responsibility is ignored. To Mr. Miller, the consequences of the action are as real and as simultaneous as the action itself. "The structure of a play...""


A link to the LA Times 10/14/03 Review:

http://pqasb.pqarchiver.com/latimes/423705201.html?MAC=a3eb446afbf43de35662fbb8dab4e396&did=423705201&FMT=FT&FMTS=FT&PMID=&printformat=1&desc=THEATER+REVIEW%3b+Flawed+man,+great+play 

THEATER REVIEW; Flawed man, great play; Rubicon Theatre does full justice to 'All My Sons,' a tragedy that reaffirms personal integrity and social responsibility.: HOME EDITION]
Philip Brandes. Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles, Calif.: Oct 14, 2003.  pg. E.3

Copyright (c) 2003 Los Angeles Times)

The key to opening the emotional floodgates in the tragedy of Joe Keller, the flawed factory owner and family man in Arthur Miller's "All My Sons," is deceptively simple -- we have to love him, no matter what.

Miller's taut 1947 drama ensures that's easier said than done, of course. As evidence mounts about Joe's complicity in the cracked cylinder heads that caused 21 fighter pilot deaths during World War II, it takes an extraordinary performance to retain sympathy for him. Ventura's Rubicon Theatre surmounts that challenge -- and many others -- in a stunning revival that does full justice to one of the greatest American plays.

As Joe, George Ball proves an irresistibly affable teddy bear of a man, radiating the self-deprecating camaraderie that lulls everyone around him into suspending their common sense about the scandal for which he let his partner go to prison. When Joe begs his scrupulously ethical son Chris (Tom Astor) to "see it human," there's no way Chris (or the rest of us) can see it otherwise, thanks to Ball's heartbreaking likability.

The show's other top gun is Robin Pearson Rose as Joe's equally endearing wife, Kate. Together, they charm even the jailed partner's shattered, vengeance-minded son, George (Joseph Fuqua, who in a brief appearance viscerally demonstrates the seductive power of the Kellers).

Reprising her award-winning performance from last year's production at San Diego's Old Globe Theatre, Rose illuminates the full stakes in Kate's steadfast belief their missing elder son will still return from the war -- rather than a delusion born of weakness, it's the moral linchpin that holds her entire world together. Just as Elizabeth Franz did with her Linda Loman in the recent Broadway revival of "Death of a Salesman," Rose reveals Kate as the pillar that holds her family together -- even after 50 years, new strengths still come to light in Miller's women.

Another tough cookie in this show -- George's sister, Annie, who's taken Joe's side over her father's -- Faline England brings the perfect mix of sweetness, vulnerability and rock-solid determination to her achingly beautiful courtship with Astor's Chris. When their illusions about Joe crumble, Astor's slow- building, smoldering intensity and England's desperate efforts to salvage their love are devastating.

Also distinguishing James O'Neil's staging is the care with which he's cast the Kellers' neighbors (peripheral roles where many productions cut corners). The restless doctor (Tony Miratti), who compromised his nobler ambitions for material complacency; his relentlessly pragmatic wife (Von Rae Wood), who shows the seething resentment of Chris' lofty idealism behind her cheery mask; the clueless amateur astrologer (Brian Harwell); and his ditzy wife (Sonia Sanz) -- all further amplify the play's themes and issues. Gary Wissman's meticulously detailed backyard set and period costumes by Ann Bruice realistically anchor the time and place. Ambient surround sound and incidental choral music provide subtle enhancement, though a pivotal gunshot cue suffers from being taped.

After languishing for decades in the shadows of Miller's "Death of a Salesman" and "The Crucible," "All My Sons" has come into its own as an equally significant work.

It's no wonder that this play, reaffirming the importance of personal integrity and social responsibility in a time of glorified self-gratification, has been so frequently revived in recent years, with varying success. Opportunities to see it may be more plentiful nowadays, but few offer this much clarity and emotional impact.

*

'All My Sons'

Where: Rubicon Theatre Company at the Laurel, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura

When: Wednesdays, 7 p.m.; Thursdays, Fridays, 8 p.m.; Saturdays, 2 and 8 p.m.; Sundays, 2 p.m.

Ends: Nov. 9

Price: $35-$45

Contact: (805) 667-2900

Running time: 2 hours, 30 minutes

[Illustration]
Caption: PHOTO: COURTING: Tom Astor, center, is the factory owner's son who courts Faline England; Joseph Fuqua is a vengeance-minded man.; PHOTOGRAPHER: Photographs by Ed Krieger; PHOTO: CENTRAL FIGURE: George Ball plays a family man and factory owner linked to a scandal, and Robin Pearson Rose portrays his endearing wife in a Ventura production of the Arthur Miller play.; PHOTOGRAPHER: Photographs by Ed Krieger

Credit: Special to The Times


UPDATE:  10/24/03:

Received RTC's Crossings Newsletter from Karyl Lynn Burns today.  Here's what it has to say about "All My Sons":


Crossings

Rubicon Theatre Company Patron E-Newsletter

 

Dear Patrons, 

 

Here’s the news from Rubicon as of October 23, 2003

 

IN THIS ISSUE:

 

  1. Critics Rave about Rubicon’s Season Opener “All My Sons” – Mention this E-Mail and Save $2 per ticket
  2. More on “All My Sons”
  3. Chairs Announced for Rubicon’s “A Winter Wonderland” Major Fundraiser at Reagan Library – December 7
  4. Grandes Dames Boutique and Luncheon on Monday, November 3 at the Lobster Trap in Oxnard
  5. ================================================

 

1. Rubicon Theatre Company’s Production of Arthur Miller’s All My Sons Receives Rave Reviews! MENTION THIS E-MAIL AND SAVE $2 PER TICKET!

 

Here are just a few of the things critics are saying about ALL MY SONS. 

 

Rubicon Theatre does full justice to “All My Sons, a tragedy that reaffirms personal integrity and social responsibility…an EXTRAORDINARY performance…A STUNNING REVIVAL of one of the GREATEST AMERICAN PLAYS. After languishing for decades in the shadows of Miller’s “Death of a Salesman” and “The Crucible,” “All My Sons” has come into its own as an equally significant work. Opportunities to see it may be plentiful nowadays, but few offer this much CLARITY AND EMOTIONAL IMPACT. - Los Angeles Times

 

“All My Sons” RESONATES WITH TIMELESS TRUTHS. James O’Neil’s production PACKS A WALLOP! You’ll be moved, emotionally cleansed and provoked to examine your own moral precepts…FIRST-RATE.,..wonderfully evocative. A RICHLY SATISFYING JOURNEY. - Santa Barbara News-Press

 

The SUPERIOR CAST manages to get the most out of Miller’s offhand wit while quietly hinting at the undertow of emotions that will change [the characters’] lives. For an evening of Miller at his most serious and unsettling, “All My Sons” IS THE TICKET! - Ventura County Star

 

2. More on ALL MY SONS

 

Considered one of Miller’s most powerful and enduring dramas, ALL MY SONS examines the needs of the individual and family versus the needs of society. It is a potent and timely play set just after World War II.

 

George Ball plays family patriarch Joe Keller, whose machinery plant is booming in post-World War II America. A onetime airplane parts manufacturer, Keller believes there’s “nothin’ bigger than family.” Robin Pearson Rose plays his loving but fragile wife Kate, who clings to the hope that their older son Larry, missing in action, will one day return home. Tom Astor plays their idealistic younger son and war hero, Chris.

 

Into this tightly knit family comes Ann Deever, played by Faline England, who brings with her a past that the Keller’s have tried to put behind them. At one time the girl-next-door, Ann’s father was business partners with Joe, and is currently serving time in prison for shipping out cracked airplane cylinder heads that were responsible for the deaths of 21 pilots during the war.

 

Ann’s brother George, played by Joseph Fuqua, is an unexpected guest, who brings shocking and revelatory news, as the play spirals headlong towards its powerful ending.

Other cast members include Brian Harwell, Sonia Sanz, Tony Miratti, Von Rae Wood, and Josh Brackett, Bennett Collings and Lucas Kipp sharing the role of Bert.

ALL MY SONS opened at the Coronet Theatre in New York on January 29, 1947 and was awarded the N.Y. Drama Critics Circle Award as the Best Play of the Season. The 1987 revival garnered both a Tony and an Outer Critics Circle Award for Best Revival.

 

Even if you have seen this play before, we have received feedback that many audience members are astonished at the play’s relevance to current issues and events.

 

ALL MY SONSmust close November 9, 2003, so call soon to order tickets. Prices range from $30 to $45. Performances are Wednesdays at 7 pm, Thursday through Saturday evenings at 8 pm., with 2 pm. matinees on Saturdays and Sundays. Call (805) 667-2900 for tickets.


UPDATE: 11/3/03:

Received Rubicon's latest issue of their Crossings Newsletter, which had this to say:


Don’t Miss “All My Sons” – FINAL WEEK

Don’t miss the final week of Arthur Miller’s “All My Sons.” The final performances are this Wednesday (at 7 pm), Thursday at 8 pm, Friday at 8 pm, Saturday at 2 pm and 8 pm, and Sunday at 2 pm. Many thanks to ELAINE and LARRY RASMUSSEN of Rasmussen & Associates; and MIKE McGUIRE of Affinity Bank for co-sponsoring this production. We are also appreciative of SANDRA and JORDAN LABY  and the SAN BUENAVENTURA FROUNDATION FOR THE ARTS, our title sponsors.

“All My Sons” continues to garner critical and popular attention. Since our last writing, here is an excerpt from another review which recently ran:

Arthur Miller’s powerful and award-winning drama, “All My Sons” is an in-depth look at moral responsibility, family bonds, denials and obligations. The performance is touching…a compelling triumph…mesmerizing. Under the complex and skilled direction of James O’ Neil, this entire cast excels with rich, emotional performances. As always here, the production values are top notch! The Rubicon troupe never fails to offer a worthy theatrical experience. You must put them on your theatrical “to do” list!

– The Tolucan Times and Canyon Crier  

http://www.tolucantimes.com/


UPDATE 11/20/03
:

 

I received the Rubicon Crossings newsletter from Karyl Lynn today.  It contained the following news about "All My Sons":

 

8.  Student Responses to All My Sons Daytime Matinees

  Below are excerpts from some of the student letters we received after All My Sons. We are especially grateful to the friends and family of LARKIN BROOKS for their support of the memorial fund in her name. Thank you, too, to the Education Outreach Committee headed by JUDIE SWOPE and JEANNETTE LONGWILL. If you would like to make a contribution to our education programs, please call Diana Smith at (805) 667-2900, ext. 21, or e-mail her at  dsmith@rubicontheatre.org.

 

Student Comments

The performances showed the fun, hard work and discipline in acting; also it showed people working and loving their jobs. They showed me that you need to be ambitious to accomplish you goal. This play gave me a better experience than the other play I saw previously “The Lion King.” It was a much more fulfilling play and a once in a lifetime event. I thought how great it would be to work in something you love. This made me more ambitious to go on strongly with my goal which is to go to a four-year university. Thank you for your kind gesture that will help me in life. – Aaron L.

What
I liked most about this play was the perfection. 'm in awe.-Yolanda S.

Thank you for your interest in public education. I can say be far from the few performances in theatre I have seen, they paled in comparison to “All My Sons.” In my 7 years of living in Ventura Countyever was I aware of the Rubicon. Watching your play, my eyes were opened to the potential of greater and bigger things. The actors’ enthusiasm and passion flowed the story along. Silent sobs were heard during the climax. I was turned from a hardened critic to an eternal fan of the Rubicon – Jason K.

The play made me laugh, cry and most of all it made me think.- Yesseni B.

 

I can truthfully say that this was the best play that I have even seen, but this was my first play so that’s kind of [ir]relevant. To tell you the truth, I didn’t think I was going to be into theatre at all, but the play “All My Sons” really changed my mind. I was way more exciting than movies because it’s live. I found the theatre to be very direct - what I mean is everything was so up front. - Virdiana R.

remember me.  The meaning of the play to me is that you can’t put your problems you haven’t solved behind you. You have to deal with them. I would give this play a 10. – Michael R.

 

The actors were so good that I felt this was really going on. They made it seem so real. That’s what I want to do. I want to amaze people and have them

 

 


 

ART

 

Photo courtesy of Rubicon Theatre Company and
InsideVC.com/

Cliff DeYoung, Joseph Fuqua and Bruce Wietz  (from left) paint themselves into psychological corners in Rubicon Theatre's production of "Art",  which runs through Sept. 28 in Ventura.



Cliff DeYoung, Joseph Fuqua and Bruce Wietz (from left) paint themselves into psychological corners in Rubicon Theatre's production of "Art." which runs through Sept. 28 in Ventura.

Received an e-mail from Karyl Lynn Burns today (8/22/02), in response to my question as to whether Joseph was slated to perform at Rubicon in the 2003 season.  She told me that he is slated to do "Art" (summarized below from a review on Showmag.com), and possibly "Dancing At Lughnasa".

Serge has bought a painting--a large white canvas with white diagonal lines-- for an exorbitant amount of money. He gleefully shows it to his friend and mentor, Marc, expecting his admiration and approval. Instead, Marc mocks his purchase, causing Serge to try to get an ally in a third friend, Yvan. Yvan is the mediator, an affable fellow who likes to keep things on an even keel. The subsequent dialogue among the friends and the resolution of their conflicts keeps the audience intrigued and amused.
Reza has written a complex study of people and their interdependencies. The piece of art is simply the catalyst for our understanding of how we are defined by how we interact with each other. While she explores the nature of friendship, she also has the knack of keeping you intellectually stimulated.
 

Also received the Rubicon Patrons2 Newsletter today, which listed the 2003 season, and had this to say about "Art":

In Rubicon's sparkling summer offering (August 29 to September 28, 2003), the need for approval and acceptance is challenged by three friends' differing opinions related to a piece of modern "Art." The production stars Richard Thomas ("The Waltons", "It's a Miracle") as Yvan, Daniel Davis ("The Invention of Love", "Wrong Mountain" on Broadway/"The Nanny" on TV) as Marc and Joseph Fuqua ("Glass Menagerie", "Old Wicked Songs") as Serge. 


UPDATE: 3/15/03:

Here is the Rubicon website's description of "Art" - which, includes a character cast change from the newsletter info above:

August 28 thru September 28, 2003

In this sparkling, sophisticated summer comedy, the friendship of three men is tested after one pays an enormous sum for a piece of modern art - a blank canvas really - white on white. Is it a treasure? A shrewd investment? Or a reflection of his poor judgment and taste? A waste? This Tony Award-winning play explores the nature of art and friendship. Brilliantly translated by Christopher Hampton, Art contains what Newsweek called a "nonstop cross-flre of crackling language - serious issues of life and art expressed in outbursts that sound like Don Rickles with a degree from the Sorbonne." Acclaimed actor Richard Thomas is the amateur art collector Serge, reprising the role he played in London. Daniel Davis (The Invention of love and Wrong Moufitain on Broadway/ "The Nanny" on TV) plays the acerbic and opinionated Marc. Joseph Fuqua (The Glass Menagerie, Old Wicked Songs) plays the perplexed Yvan, torn between his two friends' extreme positions. Jenny Sullivan returns to the Rubicon to direct this stunning international success.


Here is the 4/28/03 LATimes calendarlive listing for "Art":

http://events.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-Search-X!EventDetail-71509,00.html

Art

Rubicon Theatre Company at the Laurel  
1006 E. Main St., Ventura

In Yasmina Reza's comedy, adapted by Christopher Hampton, three friends find their relationship tested when one buys a costly white-on-white piece of modern art. With Joseph Fuqua and Daniel Davis.


Aug. 30 - Sep. 28
Opens Sat. Runs Wed.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., 2 p.m.

Price: $28
Tickets: Box office: 805-667-2900.



UPDATE 8/12/03:

Received the following e-mail from Karyl Lynn Burns today:

UPDATE TO RTC BOARD OF ADVISORS


Dear Board of Advisors Members:

Welcome to our e-mail newsletter to Advisors!

Our New Managing Director Starts Today
Today is the official start date for NORBERT TAN, Rubicon's new Managing Director (although Norbert started early has already madeimportant contributions to the organization over the past few weeks!). Norbert joins Rubicon from the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C., where he just completed an arts management fellowship. Norbert previously worked with IMG in Southeast Asia, where he worked with such noted artists as Kiri Takanawa and Placido Domingo, and arranged tours of shows such as STOMP! Norbert completed his undergraduate degree at UC Berkeley. He is an MBA graduate of UCLA. Norbert and his wife TRACY and their three cats are now residents of Ventura and look forward to being an active part of the community.

Thank you Betsy Chess!
BETSY CHESS has accomplished so much during her tenure as Interim General Manager of Rubicon. She has guided the company administratively through a time of great change. Betsy conducted the Managing Director search, helped develop our first Employee Manual (with great support from Buenaventura Medical Group), hired MIKE EULAU to make internal preparations for the annual audit, and managed the company's day-to-day operations. We are so grateful to her for all she has done! Fortunately for us, Betsy has agreed to join the Board of Advisors and continue her support of Rubicon. Betsy has just accepted an important new volunteer role as President of the Board of the San Buenaventura Foundation for the Arts, where she will be working closely with SANDRA AND JORDAN LABY and TERRY RAGAN on the development of an arts village in Downtown Ventura. Congratulations to Betsy, and to the Foundation and its supporters! At last week's meeting, the City Council members unanimously accepted the results of a study conducted by AMS recommending three possible locations. A feasibility study will follow.

Sylvia" Breaks Single Ticket Records
We completed our run of "Sylvia" yesterday, which has broken all single ticket sales records! ("Dancing at Lughnasa" still holds the record for most single and subscription tickets combined). We surpassed our budget goal of $78,000 in ticket sales and ended the run with $102,700, or 131% of projections- remarkable! Thanks to all of you who spread the word about the production. We're especially grateful to HOWARD BOROUGHS, who introduced residents of the Ventura Townhouse to Rubicon's work and helped fill our Friday matinees. A fond farewell to cast members MARC CARDIFF, KRISTI LINES, JOE SPANO, LAURIE WALTERS, stage manager LINDA TROSS and our great crew and summer interns.

Rubicon's "Schoolhouse Rock, Jr."
Opens Next Friday for 5 Performances Only
in Buena High School's Auditorium

Bring your children and grandchildren to see kids from Rubicon Theatre Company's Summer Musical Theatre Camp in "Schoolhouse Rock" next Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Like the classic television series, "Schoolhouse Rock. Jr." is hip, educational and entertaining. It teaches young people that learning can be as fun as you choose to make it. The musical runs about an hour, and so is appropriate for younger children as well.  Hip -hop sensation CHRIS SULLIVAN has choreographed the show, CHRIS KIMBLER ("Forever Plaid") has been Musical Director, and Rubicon Young Professional intern MARIA PERRY has Stage Managed. For logistical reasons, we bumped up to the 1,000-seat theatre at Buena. Which means we have lots of seats. Please support this important endeavor and don't miss these terrific students! The 14-member cast has been working 10 to 5 pm six days a week the past three weeks under BRIAN McDONALD's tutelage developing their acting, singing and dancing skills and making their own sets, props and costumes. Tickets are $10; free to children 5 and under.

Friday, August 15 at 7 pm
Saturday, August 16 at 2PM and 7PM
Sunday, August 17 at 2PM and 7PM

The address for the auditorium is 5670 Telegraph Road, West of Victoria Avenue.

Directions from the South: Take 101 North. Exit at Victoria Avenue. Turn right on Victoria, and go about 2 miles. Turn left on Telegraph Road, then left on Wake Forest.

Directions from the North: Take 101 North to the Santa Paula Freeway (126 North). Exit at Victoria Avenue. Turn left, then left again at Telegraph Road, then left at Wake Forest.

Thanks to, STEPHANIE CABANISS,  JUDIE SWOPE and JEANNETTE LONGWILL and the Education Outreach Committee, who are organizing usher support and concessions.

P.S.  Don't miss ADVISOR MIKE MEREWETHER'S grandson, who does a fabulous job with the song "Three."

Tony and Olivier Award-Winning Comedy "on Exhibit"
for August and September
We end our Fifth Anniversary season at Rubicon with "Art," a fast-paced, funny comedy by YASMINA REZA. The plot of "Art" follows three men whose friendship is tested after one pays an enormous sum for a piece of modern art - a blank canvas really - white on white.  Is it a treasure? A shrewd investment? Or a reflection of his poor judgment and taste? Brilliantly translated by CHRISTOPHER HAMPTON, "Art" contains what Newsweek calls, "a nonstop cross-fire of crackling language -- serious issues of life and art expressed in outbursts that sound like Don Rickles with a degree from the Sorbonne." 

"Art" played to sold-out houses in Paris for seven years after it premiered in 1994, and has since been produced in more than 30 countries. This production won the Olivier and Tony Awards for Best Play.

Summer Schedule for "Art":
New Low-Priced Performances on Thursdays at 2 pm and Sundays at 7 pm
We have added Thursday matinees and Sunday early evening performances for "Art," at the low price of $25. The schedule is as follows:

"Art" runs August 30 thru September 28 - Limited Run!
Previews are August 28 and August 29
Wednesdays 7 pm
Thursdays 2 pm and 8 pm
Fridays 8 pm
Saturdays 2 pm and 8 pm
Sundays 2 pm and 7 pm

Ticket prices range from $25 to $45. "Art" runs only 90 minutes and plays without intermission. Tickets for "Art" are available by calling the box office at (805) 667-2900.

Stage and Screen Veterans Cast in "Art"
"Art" is a sparkling and sophisticated comedy about the nature of friendship and art.The three-person cast is made up of actors who have outstanding Broadway, film and television credits.

CLIFF DEYOUNG plays the acerbic and opinionated Marc, who criticizes his friend's extravagant purchase. Cliff started his professional career with the band Clear Light. His singing led to a role in the original Broadway production of "Hair," followed by his performance in the Tony award-winning drama "Sticks and Bones" by David Rabe. He returned to California when he was cast in the TV film "Sunshine," playing a struggling musician raising his daughter alone after his wife's death from cancer. (He also starred in the television series of the same name.)

Cliff's numerous television movie and miniseries credits include Charles Lindbergh in "The Lindbergh Kidnapping Case" with Anthony Hopkins, Robert F. Kennedy in "King" and John F. Kennedy in "Robert Kennedy and his Times." Other notable appearances include roles in NBC miniseries "Centennial," "Master of the Game," Stephen King's "The Tommyknockers," "Seduced by Madness: The Diane Borchardt Story" opposite Ann-Margaret and "The Last Don." Cliff appeared in three television films with the late, great film director John Frankenheimer: "Andersonville," "George Wallace" and "Path to War."  In 1996, Cliff returned to series television in the ABC drama series "Relativity." Most recently he was seen on the small screen in the PBS drama "Almost a Woman" and Lifetime Network's "The Secret Life of Zoey" opposite Mia Farrow.  He has guest-starred in over fifty TV series' including "The West Wing," "The District," "CSI," "JAG," "The Practice" and "The X Files."

On film, Cliff has appeared in a wide variety of films including the Oscar-nominated film "Glory," 'The Suicide Kings," "Independence Day," "F/X," "Protocol," "The Hunger," "The Substitute," and  others. "Art" marks Cliff's Rubicon debut.

JOSEPH FUQUA plays the amateur art collector Serge in "Art."  A graduate of Yale School of Drama, Broadway and off-Broadway credits include "Brighton Beach Memoirs," "110 in the Shade" (Lincoln Center), "Raft of the Medusa" and "Yours, Anne."  In L.A., Joseph won a Drama-Logue Award for his role as Charlie Chaplin in "The Cat's Meow." His other regional credits include South Coast Rep, Dallas Shakespeare Festival, Actor's Theatre of Louisville and the Arena Stage.

Joseph has guest-starred on "The X-Files," "The Profiler," "Brooklyn South," "The Pretender," "Star Trek:  Deep Space Nine" and "Becker."  His films include "Ed's Next Move," "David Searching," "Heyday," and J.E.B. Stuart in "Gettysburg," a role is he reprised recently in "Gods and Generals" with Robert Duvall and Bruce Boxleitner.

Joseph has appeared with Rubicon in "A Streetcar Named Desire," "Dancing at Lughnasa," "Old Wicked Songs," "Murder in the First," "The Rainmaker" (Robby Award), "The Little Foxes" and "The Glass Menagerie."  Joseph also teaches middle school and adult acting classes in Rubicon's conservatory program.


BRUCE WEITZ plays the perplexed Yvan in "Art," a salesman who is torn between his two friend's extreme positions. Although best known for his Emmy Award-winning performance on "Hill Street Blues," and his recurring roles on "Judging Amy" and "E.R." Bruce has strong roots in the theatre. He appeared in numerous shows on and Off Broadway, including "Death of a Salesman" with George C. Scott, "The Basic Training of Pavlo Hummel" with Al Pacino, "Norman Is That You?" and "Thieves."

Bruce appeared in more than a dozen productions at Joseph Papp's Shakespeare in the Park, and has worked in over sixty regional theatre productions, with prestigious companies such as The Long Wharf, The Guthrie and Arena Stage.

He has been seen in more than one hundred feature films, TV movies and television shows. He was nominated eight times for Emmy Awards, including one nomination each for the ABC mini-series "Baby M" and a guest-starring role on the CBS series "Midnight Caller." He received six nominations for his role as Detective Belker on NBC's "Hill Street Blues," winning the coveted award in 1984. Bruce holds an MFA in Theatre from Carnegie Mellon University.

Photos of Artists on Display During "Art"
Photographs of painters and their paintings by DONNA GRANATA will be featured downstairs in Laby Hall during "Art." Donna is the Founder of Focus on the Masters, a non-profit educational program which documents the work of contemporary artists through regular photographic exhibitions, meet-the-artist series, educational outreach to schools and youth centers and cable access programming. Donna's works are housed in the Carnegie Art Museum, the City of Ventura Municipal Art Collection, Polaroid Corporation, at the Smithsonian, in the George Eastman House, and at other public institutions that house the personal archives of the artists documented. The show is on exhibit from August 28 through September 28.

Talkback Wednesdays Include Discussions on the Nature of Art
Following the first two Wednesday evening performances of "Art," September 3 and 10, Donna will facilitate a discussion on the nature of art with audience members and actors. Donna's teaches for Elderhostel's Center for the Studies of the Future, and lectures for the J. Paul Getty Collections the Getty Conservation Institute, and UCLA.

French Menu Set for Friday "Food for Thought" Pre-Show Dinners
If you haven't yet attended one of REGINA TULLY's pre-show dinners, be sure to make your reservations now for September 5 or September 12. These dinners are a wonderful way to get to know your fellow audience members and share your passion for the organization. (That's where we first met DONNA AND JERRY BEATTY and MARY AND DON GLOISTEN. (Donna and the Gloisten's are wonderful new members of the Board of Advisors!) Dinner is served in the downstairs rehearsal room in the rehearsal room at 6:15 p.m. During dessert, Rubicon's Artistic Director James O'Neil or Director Jenny Sullivan will share insights about the process and talks about the background of the play. The French-style menu for "ART" (in honor of author YASMINA REZA and the show's Paris premiere), is butter lettuce with champagne dressing, coq-au-vin (chicken and mushrooms simmered in a wine and herbs), rice pilaf, asparagus, crème caramel and coffee. Alternate low-fat menus or vegetarian entrees are available with advance notice. A complimentary glass of wine and non-alcoholic beverages are included. The cost for dinner (including tax and tip) is only $30; $25 for Rubicon subscribers. Such a deal! 

Company News. Rubicon Artists Cround the Country…
STEPHANIE ZIMBALIST ("The Rainmaker"/"Dancing at Lughnasa") opened earlier this month at American Repertory Theatre in Boston in the world premiere "Romantique," a new play by Hershey Felder. Stephanie plays George Sand and co-stars with Hershey and Tony Award-winner Anthony Crivello. She returns to Rubicon in October to start rehearsals for "Defying Gravity," in which she plays the role of Teacher, inspired by the life of teacher and astronaut Christa McAuliffe. JOE SPANO (Greg in "Sylvia" guest-starred two weeks ago on "Boomtown" and "NYPD Blue," JOHN RITTER ("J for J") stars on the television series "8 Simple Rules…" LINDA PURL ("Streetcar"/"The Little Foxes") launches an international theatre festival in Colorado Springs on August 9 with a star-studded benefit featuring BONNIE FRANKLIN ("Dancing at Lughnasa"). Bonnie's own theatre company moves to the University of Judaism this year, with readings of classic and contemporary plays. DAVID BIRNEY ("Diaries of Adam & Eve") just completed a run as Shylock in "The Merchant of Venice" at The Colonial Theatre in Rhode Island. TAMI TAPPAN DAMIANO (Stella in "Streecar") starred in Musical Theatre West's production of "Crazy for You."  JESSICA O'HARA BAKER, who was a Rubicon Young Professional (RYP) last summer and who worked backstae on "Sylvia," leaves next week to attend the Tisch School of the Arts in New York. Intern SARA BASHOR is going attends American Academy of Dramatic Arts in Pasadena in the fall. RYP CRAIG MULGREW will return to Rubicon in January as an intern, having just completed his training at PCPA THEATERFEST. TED NEELEY is in New York meeting with producers about RASPUTIN; a new musical which also features Artistic Director JAMES O'NEIL and AMANDA MCBROOM ("Jaques Brel"). Amanda performs in concert with Steve Ross in L.A. on Sunday, August 24 at the Ford Amphitheatre in L.A. DANNY DAVIS, who was previously scheduled to appear in Art, had to bow out because of the success of "Talking Heads". Danny was part of the Obie Award-winning ensemble of "Talking Heads", which has been extended in New York. LARRY RABEN, who directed Rubicon's first production of "Forever Plaid", is currently in the cast of "The Producers" in New York. HEATHER LEE, the soprano member of our "Tintypes" cast, now plays Tessie Tura in "Gypsy" on Broadway. PAUL AINSLEY, who appeared in Rubicon's concert presentations of "Beggar's Holiday" and "Jesus Christ Superstar", plays Abner Dillon in the National Tour of 42nd Street!, now playing in Los Angeles. Our thoughts and prayers go out to CARL ANDERSON (Judas in our opening production of Jesus Christ Superstar and Mac in Beggar's Holiday), who is at Cedars Sinai Hospital battling Leukemia. And with JANET DORAN VEEVERS, costumer for Streetcar, who is undergoing chemotherapy for cancer. DANNY BOLERO (World Goes Round) was part of the ensemble of the musical Cesar and Ruben, created and directed by Ed Begley Jr. and presented at the El Portal in L.A. in March and April. STACY KEACH (Love Letters) played the lead in Ten Unknowns at the Mark Taper Forum. LEO DAIGNAULT (Forever Plaid) is currently on the National Tour of The Full Monty. SHARON McNIGHT (Beggar's Holiday) closed in Red Hot Mama at the York Theatre in New York last week, her one-woman show about Sophie Tucker. MICHAEL LEARNED, who plays Daisy next season, played the title role in Maxwell Anderson's Elizabeth the Queen at the Folger Theatre in Washington, D.C.


In Next Week;s Newsletter;
"A thank you to our sponsors, hotel package information, up date on Grande Dames' activities, credit line needs, our development plans for the next two months, special event plans, a Board of Advisors' roster, and a list of activities and tasks that you can help with! n

Thanks for your interest and support!

Karyl Lynn Burns
Executive Director/Co-Artistic Director
Rubicon Theatre Company
1006 E. Main Street
Suite 300
Ventura, CA  93001


UPDATE 9/2/03:

Received this great e-mail from the Rubicon E-Mail List, and specifically from Steve & Cynde Magidson:

To Rubicon Patrons, fans and supporters;

Capping off a wonderful opening night performance of Rubicon's latest production, "Art", co-starring Bruce Weitz, Cliff De Young, and Joseph Fuqua was an equally wonderful gala party at the Ventura County Museum of History and Art. It was a great setting and a great party. For those of you who missed the event, here are some pictures of the evening. We hope you enjoy them.

And, if you haven't yet seen Art, you really should do so. It's a marvelous piece of work, performed incredibly by this superb cast. Trust us, you'll enjoy it completely. It's so good, we'll be seeing at least 2-3 more times. Get your tickets soon -- this production is going to sell fast!!!!!

Steve & Cynde Magidson

Below are some pictures from the gala, courtesy of Steve Magidson:


Joseph and friends.

Development Associate Diana Smith, Joseph, Jenny Sullivan, & Cynde Magidson

Judy Levitz, Lois Fischman, Joseph & Mallory Hammer

All photos courtesy of Steve Magidson [steve_magidson@consultant.com] and Rubicon Theatre Company [steve_magidson@consultant.com] and Rubicon Theatre Company

A listing in the 8/28/03 LATimes CalendarLive:

http://www.calendarlive.com/printedition/calendar/calwknd/cl-wk-forecast28aug28,2,5977915.htmlstory 

THEATER: Friends and wealth collide


In "Art," Yasmina Reza's comedy adapted by Christopher Hampton and directed by Jenny Sullivan, three men find their friendship sorely tested when one buys a costly white-on-white piece of modern art. With Cliff DeYoung as the acerbic Marc, Joseph Fuqua as the amateur art collector and Bruce Weitz as the friend who finds himself caught in the middle.

"Art," Rubicon Theatre Company at the Laurel, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura. Opens Saturday, 7 p.m. Wednesdays, Sundays, 7 p.m.; Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Thursdays, Saturdays-Sundays, 2 p.m.; ends Sept. 28. $28-$43. (805) 667-2900

.


An InsideVC.com 9/4/03 Art article/review entitled: "'Art' as life":

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_2230463,00.html

"...Rubicon Theatre Company has assembled three seasoned professionals to bring the characters to life under the direction of Jenny Sullivan. Joseph Fuqua, who has appeared in diverse Rubicon productions as well as on stages nationwide, on TV and in films such as "Gettysburg," is Serge...Fuqua as the cool Serge and DeYoung as the hot Marc are experts at thrust and parry in the often merciless battle over whose intellectual and emotional preferences should be given priority. Fuqua's subtlety and alertness color Serge's remote facade, transforming him from a white-on-white character to one of muted power."

The Santa Barbara News-Press 9/4/03 Art review entitled:  "What is 'Art'? A comedy with new depth" (an abstract only, one needs to subscribe - even to buy the article - and I can't afford it right now): 

http://search.newspress.com/2003/09/03/090303theater.htm

"...Abstract: A true work of art tends to resonate in different ways the more often you look at it. As time goes by and circumstances change, the piece speaks to you in a different way...."

The LA Times 9/3/03 Art review entitled:  "Friendship as a work of 'Art'":

http://pqasb.pqarchiver.com/latimes/394428411.html?MAC=65393b7cd73aebdc9d0e26ac153a9847&did=394428411&FMT=FT&FMTS=FT&PMID=&printformat=&desc=THEATER+REVIEW%3b+Friendship+as+a+work+of+%27Art%27

THEATER REVIEW; Friendship as a work of 'Art'; Longtime associations unravel in Rubicon Theatre's skillful and layered production.:[HOME EDITION]
Philip Brandes. Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles, Calif.: Sep 3, 2003.  pg. E.14

Copyright The Times Mirror Company; Los Angeles Times 2003. All rights reserved.)

 

"Nothing great or beautiful in this world has ever been born of rational argument." That offhand line from Yasmina Reza's "Art" contains the key to staging Reza's deceptively simple play about three men whose longtime friendship founders over what appears to be, well, a rational argument about the nature and value of art.

The ostensible subject of their debate, precipitated when one of them pays an absurd amount of money for a minimalist white-on-white painting, is only the jumping-off point for a complex exploration of the expectations and boundaries of friendship itself. In a superbly executed staging for Ventura's Rubicon Theatre, director Jenny Sullivan keeps an eye on the emotional ball, coaxing powerhouse performances from a first-rate cast: Cliff De Young, Joseph Fuqua and Bruce Weitz.

De Young's Marc is the classic acerbic curmudgeon; he relentlessly criticizes his friend Serge's (Fuqua's) extravagant purchase. De Young's vehemence signals an exasperation that extends far beyond philosophical contempt for what he calls the "nostalgia merchants" of modern art. Easygoing mutual pal Yvan (Weitz) doesn't much like the painting either, but he shrugs it off -- it's fine with him as long as it makes Serge happy. But for Marc, there is something more deeply personal at stake -- just why he cares so much is one of the play's central mysteries.

In increasingly heated confrontations with his friends, combined with skillfully timed asides to the audience, De Young guides us through the various layers of Marc's posturing. What ultimately disturbs Marc most, De Young reveals, is not what the painting says about Serge's judgment, but what it says about his own -- for having maintained a friendship with someone like Serge for so long.

For his part, Serge chaffs convincingly at Marc's "vile, pretentious laughter," and even delights in the irritation he's causing his friend. Casting the considerably younger Fuqua as Serge was a risky and in some ways not entirely successful choice for a play whose protagonists implicitly negotiate their relationships as peers. There isn't a false note in Fuqua's performance, but it's hard to see the basis for a close friendship lasting 15 years between two men at such different stages of life.

However, making Serge younger gives added weight to a key dynamic between them -- Marc's admission that he's always thought of himself as a mentor to Serge -- and adds an intriguing possible motive in Serge's need to extricate himself from Marc's influence -- did he buy the painting as a way of defining his own identity? Fuqua's Serge may be younger than Marc, but he's no less calculating.

In Reza's complicated, and at times frustratingly indeterminate, universe, the closest we get to pure motives are Yvan's attempts to mediate the rising tensions between his friends; in enduring the scorn and ridicule his character's efforts draw from both sides, the immensely sympathetic Weitz brings tragic depth to the dispute. With Yvan emerging as the story's wounded heart, Marc as its cold head, and Serge as its skin-deep consciousness (it's no coincidence he's a dermatologist), this production makes "Art" the compelling story of a divided body trying to mend its own fissures, while affirming there is still something in friendship worth salvaging.

*

'Art'

Where: Rubicon Theatre Company at the Laurel, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura

When: Wednesdays, Sundays, 7 p.m.; Thursdays-Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Thursdays, Saturdays-Sundays, 2 p.m.

Ends: Sept. 28

<Price: $28-$43

Contact: (805) 667-2900

[Illustration]
Caption: PHOTO: PALLING AROUND: Veteran actors Cliff De Young, left, Joseph Fuqua and Bruce Weitz star in "Art." A rift develops between the longtime friends when one makes an extravagant purchase.; PHOTOGRAPHER: Tim Swope

Credit: Special to The Times

Reproduced with permission of the copyright owner. Further reproduction or distribution is prohibited without permission.

Author(s): Philip Brandes
Section: Calendar; Part E; Calendar Desk
Publication title: Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles, Calif.: Sep 3, 2003.  pg. E.14
Source Type: Newspaper
ISSN/ISBN: 04583035
ProQuest document ID: 394428411
Text Word Count 606


 

 

OF TIME AND TIDE

Plays-in-Progress June 21 - June 29, 2003.  This reading program of new plays in development in June includes "American Menu" by New York-based playwright Don Glenn; "Mating Dance of the Werewolf" by Mark Stein (who also authored "Relativity and "At Long Last Leo"); and "Of Time and Tide" by Sean Cullen.  Directors for the program are Jenny Sullivan, Steven Schipper (Artistic Director of Manitoba Theatre Center in Canada), and Joseph Fuqua, respectively. Tickets are $10 per reading; $25 for the series.  Patron tickets, with special seating and an invitation to a private party with the artists, are $100, and include a $65 tax-deductible contribution to Rubicon's new works program.


** UPDATE 6/16/03 **

Received this e-mil from Karyl Lynn Burns today, via the Rubicon-Patrons Yahoogroups list.  Here's the info on the entire program, including Joseph's play:


Dear Rubicon Patron:

Please join us the next two weekends for an important event. Rubicon Theatre Company presents dynamic readings of new plays-in-progress by established and up-and-coming playwrights, with remarkable actors and directors such as Hattie Winson ("Becker"), CCH Pounder ("E.R.") and others.

Don't miss this chance to actually participate in the process of developing new American plays! Each play will be read once the first weekend. Rubicon's Artistic Directors will then lead a discussion with the audience about the play's characters, plot, thru-line, themes, etc.

Based on the insights of the audience, and comments from the actors and directors, the playwrights will rework scenes or sections of dialogue. Then the plays will be read again the second weekend.

Each reading is only $10 general admission; or attend as many readings as you like for only $35 (Festival pass)! Mention this e-mail and save $2 per ticket.

Special patron tickets are available at $100, and include a private welcome cocktail party with the playwrights and actors hosted by Harriet and Harold Friedman this Thursday and reserved tickets (upon request).

Call (805) 667-2900.

Below are excerpts from the press release. We hope to see you there...


RUBICON PREMIERES "PLAYS-IN-PROGRESS" FESTIVAL
OVER NEXT TWO WEEKS WITH FOUR PLAYS
THAT PROVIDE INSIDE LOOK AT THE CREATIVE PROCESS


PROGRAM SCHEDULE


MATING DANCE OF THE WEREWOLF by Mark Stein
Directed by Stephen Schipper
Saturday, June 21 at 2 pm & Saturday, June 28 at 7 pm 

Sparked by primal attraction, a police officer and a striking young woman embark on a passionate affair. That is, until their mating dance unleashes feelings in her that he cannot begin to understand. Ken thinks he's found 'the one'; Abby says she's a werewolf. When one of his colleagues on the force ends up dead, Ken must face the possibility that the murderer may be closer than he thinks.  The world premiere of Mark Stein's suspenseful, funny and sexy cop thriller is co-produced with Manitoba Theatre Centre and directed by Manitoba's Artistic Director Steven Schipper.

Playwright MARK STEIN is an award-winning author whose works have premiered or been produced at South Coast Repertory Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, George Street Playhouse, the Ashland Shakespeare Festival and other prestigious regional theatres. He has written screenplays and made-for-television movies for Steve Martin, John Ritter and others. Mark is currently based on Washington D.C., where he resides with his wife Arlene (cousin of Oxnard resident and Rubicon subscriber Harriet Friedman) and two children. MATING DANCE OF THE WEREWOLF is being co-produced by Manitoba Theatre Centre (MTC) and Rubicon Theatre Company in Winnipeg next April and May under the direction of MTC's Artistic Director Steven Schipper.

***

AMERICAN MENU by Don Wilson Glenn
Directed by Jenny Sullivan
Saturday, June 21 at 7 pm & Saturday, June 28 at 2 pm

It's 1964; a small town in Texas. Five black women work in the "pressure-cooker" kitchen of a diner that only serves whites. Isolated for hours at a time in their drudgery, with the service bell reminding them of their menial positions, they laugh, they dream, they rage, they offer comfort, and ultimately, they draw strength from each other--to choose from a broader American menu than that their time and circumstances has offered.  HATTIE WINSTON and CCH POUNDER are cast.

DON WILSON GLENN is an up-and-coming young playwright based in New York City. AMERICAN MENU is his first produced play. It is currently being produced off-off-Broadway and has received tremendous critical acclaim, including three AUDELCO AWARDS. This presentation is the first professional reading of the play on the West Coast. AMERICAN MENU is in part based on Glenn's mother's life, and is the first play in a trilogy about her experiences entitled THE COLLARD GREEN SISTERS.

***

OF TIME AND TIDE by Sean Cullen
Directed by Joseph Fuqua
Sunday, June 22 at 2 pm & Sunday, June 29 at 2 pm         

Set during the Korean War, this gripping dramatic story opens with a Baltimore blue-collar family mourning the loss of their oldest son. This non-linear play ebbs and flows through time, building in intensity as it draws to a tender and painful final moment - perhaps the only moment of tenderness in the life of an unlucky but loved young man. In the vein of John Osborne, this rich piece is filled with stormy, vulnerable characters that hide their true feelings in lies and fierce tidal waves of anger. The cast includes SEAN CULLEN, CHUCK O'NEIL, LAUREL LYLE and others.

SEAN CULLEN's OF TIME AND TIDE has previously been given readings at the Huntington Theatre (Boston), the Old Globe Theatre (San Diego) and in Manhattan at Theatre for a New Audience. Cullen's first script CITY HIGH: "INITIATION," a television pilot for a dramatic series co-created with Charles Schultz, was a finalist at the New Harmony Project. Cullen made his Broadway acting debut in the Tony-Award winning JAMES JOYCE'S THE DEAD, adapted and directed by Richard Nelson. Most recently, he appeared Off-Broadway in Mr. Nelson's THE GENERAL FROM AMERICA (featuring Corin Redgrave), at Theatre for a New Audience. Cullen is currently at work in New York on the establishment of the American National Theatre at Ground Zero.

***

THE UNHINGED:  A DREAD & DREKFEST AT THE BED & BREAKFAST ON A PROMONTORY BY A STORMY SEA by Tony Abatemarco
Directed by Tony Abatemarco
Sunday, June 22 at 7 pm & Sunday, June 29 at 7 pm

Inspired by the late Charles Ludlam's Ridiculous Theatre Company, THE UNHINGED is a clever comedy/mystery set in a bed and breakfast on an island off the coast of Cape Cod. In the production, two male actors play a variety of wild characters ranging from a young chambermaid to an ex-nun to a hunchbacked policeman. TONY ABATEMARCO and JOHN FLECK are cast.

TONY ABATEMARCO is a Los Angeles-ased director, actor and writer. He directed Julie Harris in LUCIFER'S CHILD on Broadway and for A & E. In addition, he was the first Artistic Director of the Jacques D'Amboise National Dance Institute in Los Angeles. His most recent original one-man show, COLOGNE, has received critical acclaim Off-Broadway and at Santa Fe Stages. Abatemarco has won numerous awards in L.A., including an Ovation Award for Lead Performance for Charles Ludlam's THE MYSTERY OF IRMA VEP.  e is the recipient of two NEA Fellowships, and was founding director of The Accident Theatre and The Night House. In addition to his New York credits, he has directed at Pasadena Playhouse, Mark Taper Forum, Sante Fe Stages and Arena Stage. Last year, he appeared in five feature films including "I Am Sam," and has guest starred on more than three dozen television shows, including "The Division," "Leap of Faith," "The District," "Frazier," "Profiler" and "E.R."

ABOUT RUBICON THEATRE COMPANY
Rubicon Theatre Company is Ventura's non-profit professional theatre company.  Founded in 1998 by James O'Neil and Karyl Lynn Burns, the mission of the company is to present a diverse season of classic and contemporary comedies, dramas and musicals for the entertainment, enrichment and education of residents of, and visitors to, the region. Rubicon Theatre Company performs in the intimate 200-seat Laurel, a renovated church originally built in the 1920s. Rubicon has declared the "anchor" of Ventura's new Downtown Cultural District by City Council proclamation. Since its inception, Rubicon Theatre Company has played to more than 120,000 individuals and 20,000 students.

For tickets to Rubicon Theatre Company's "Plays-in-Progress" Festival, call (805) 667-2900.
OF TIME AND TIDE by Sean Cullen
Directed by Joseph Fuqua
Sunday, June 22 at 2 pm & Sunday, June 29 at 2 pm         

Set during the Korean War, this gripping dramatic story opens with a Baltimore blue-collar family mourning the loss of their oldest son. This non-linear play ebbs and flows through time, building in intensity as it draws to a tender and painful final moment - perhaps the only moment of tenderness in the life of an unlucky but loved young man. In the vein of John Osborne, this rich piece is filled with stormy, vulnerable characters that hide their true feelings in lies and fierce tidal waves of anger. The cast includes SEAN CULLEN, CHUCK O'NEIL, LAUREL LYLE and others.

SEAN CULLEN's OF TIME AND TIDE has previously been given readings at the Huntington Theatre (Boston), the Old Globe Theatre (San Diego) and in Manhattan at Theatre for a New Audience. Cullen's first script CITY HIGH: "INITIATION," a television pilot for a dramatic series co-created with Charles Schultz, was a finalist at the New Harmony Project. Cullen made his Broadway acting debut in the Tony-Award winning JAMES JOYCE'S THE DEAD, adapted and directed by Richard Nelson. Most recently, he appeared Off-Broadway in Mr. Nelson's THE GENERAL FROM AMERICA (featuring Corin Redgrave), at Theatre for a New Audience. Cullen is currently at work in New York on the establishment of the American National Theatre at Ground Zero.

***

THE UNHINGED:  A DREAD & DREKFEST AT THE BED & BREAKFAST ON A PROMONTORY BY A STORMY SEA by Tony Abatemarco
Directed by Tony Abatemarco
Sunday, June 22 at 7 pm & Sunday, June 29 at 7 pm

Inspired by the late Charles Ludlam's Ridiculous Theatre Company, THE UNHINGED is a clever comedy/mystery set in a bed and breakfast on an island off the coast of Cape Cod. In the production, two male actors play a variety of wild characters ranging from a young chambermaid to an ex-nun to a hunchbacked policeman. TONY ABATEMARCO and JOHN FLECK are cast.

TONY ABATEMARCO is a Los Angeles-ased director, actor and writer. He directed Julie Harris in LUCIFER'S CHILD on Broadway and for A & E. In addition, he was the first Artistic Director of the Jacques D'Amboise National Dance Institute in Los Angeles. His most recent original one-man show, COLOGNE, has received critical acclaim Off-Broadway and at Santa Fe Stages. Abatemarco has won numerous awards in L.A., including an Ovation Award for Lead Performance for Charles Ludlam's THE MYSTERY OF IRMA VEP.  e is the recipient of two NEA Fellowships, and was founding director of The Accident Theatre and The Night House. In addition to his New York credits, he has directed at Pasadena Playhouse, Mark Taper Forum, Sante Fe Stages and Arena Stage. Last year, he appeared in five feature films including "I Am Sam," and has guest starred on more than three dozen television shows, including "The Division," "Leap of Faith," "The District," "Frazier," "Profiler" and "E.R."

ABOUT RUBICON THEATRE COMPANY
Rubicon Theatre Company is Ventura's non-profit professional theatre company.  Founded in 1998 by James O'Neil and Karyl Lynn Burns, the mission of the company is to present a diverse season of classic and contemporary comedies, dramas and musicals for the entertainment, enrichment and education of residents of, and visitors to, the region. Rubicon Theatre Company performs in the intimate 200-seat Laurel, a renovated church originally built in the 1920s. Rubicon has declared the "anchor" of Ventura's new Downtown Cultural District by City Council proclamation. Since its inception, Rubicon Theatre Company has played to more than 120,000 individuals and 20,000 students.

For tickets to Rubicon Theatre Company's "Plays-in-Progress" Festival, call (805) 667-2900.




Here is a link to the 6/19/03 InsideVC.com (Ventura County Star) article on "Plays-in-Progress" entitled: "Rubicon is hone sweet home for playwrights":

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_2048857,00.html

The nonlinear play, which ebbs and flows through time, is a dramatic story about a Baltimore blue-collar family mourning the death of their son in the Korean War. In the vein of John Osborne, the piece is filled with stormy, vulnerable characters who hide their feelings in lies and anger.


Here is a link to the 6/23/03 Santa Barbara News-Press' article entitled:  "Onstage: New Plays".  Again, this is only an abstract.  You have to subscribe even to read an article published on the same day for this newspaper.  I don't subscribe, so, no article: 

http://search.nespress.com/2003/06/16/061603onstage.htm 

Abstract: "...The Rubicon Theatre Company will present "Plays in Progress," a series of readings of new plays, over the next two weekends at the Laurel Theatre, 1006 E. Main St. in Ventura. Mark Stein's "Mating Dance of the Werewolf," to be read at 2 p.m. Saturday and 7 p.m. June 28, concerns a woman who fears her police-officer b..."



A link to today's LA Times Calendarlive listing:

http://events.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-Search-X!EventDetail-78318,00.html

June 24, 2003 | 

Plays-in-Progress Festival

Rubicon Theatre Company at the Laurel  
1006 E. Main St., Ventura

Staged readings of four new plays. "Mating Dance of the Werewolf" by Mark Stein; "American Menu" by Don Wilson Glenn, "Of Time and Tide" by Sean Cullen, "The Unhinged: A Dread & Drekfest at the Bed & Breakfast on a Promontory By a Stormy Sea" by Tony Abatemarco.

Through Jun. 29
Sat., 2 and 7 p.m.; Sun., 2 and 7 p.m. Call for play schedule.

Tickets: Box office: 805-667-2900.
Write a review



A link to the Berkerductions.com listing of the Festival:

http://www.barkerductions.com/theaters/rubicon/rubicon.html

RUBICON PREMIERES "PLAYS IN PROGRESS" FESTIVAL OVER NEXT TWO WEEKS WITH FOUR PLAYS THAT PROVDIE INSIDE LOOK AT THE CREATIVE PROCESS

· "Plays-in-Progress" Festival Runs Weekends of June 21-22 and June 28-29
· Audience to Meet the Playwrights, Directors and Actors, Gain Insight into the Creative Process and Participate in the Development of New Plays
· Presented by Rubicon Theatre Company at The Laurel

Ventura, California, June 4, 2003 - This season marks the debut of Rubicon Theatre Company's "Plays-in-Progress," a series of readings of four extraordinary new plays. Rubicon's intimate setting allows audiences to converse with the playwrights, directors and actors -- and actually participate in the process of developing and refining new plays.

Four new plays will be read on two weekends: June 21-22 and June 28-29. Each play will be read once the first weekend and once the second weekend. Playwrights will be in residence in Ventura for a week to rewrite, rework and refine the pieces. As a result, the works will evolve and change during the festival, allowing audiences insight into the process of creating new works for the American stage.

An open Plays-in-Progress Festival Ticket package is available for $35, allowing audience members to attend an unlimited number of readings. Individual readings are priced at $10. Patron Passes at $100 include admission to all events, an exclusive invitation to the VIP welcome reception hosted by Harriet and Harold Friedman, reserved seats upon request and a tax-deductible contribution to Rubicon's New Play Development program. Tickets are available by phone at (805) 667-2900 or at the box office, 1006 E. Main Street (Laurel Street Entrance), Ventura, CA 93001.

"PLAYS IN PROGRESS" PROGRAM SCHEDULE

MATING DANCE OF THE WEREWOLF by Mark Stein
Directed by Stephen Schipper
Saturday, June 21 at 2 pm & Saturday, June 28 at 7 pm 
Sparked by primal attraction, a police officer and a striking young woman embark on a passionate affair. That is, until their mating dance unleashes feelings in her that he cannot begin to understand. Ken thinks he's found 'the one'; Abby says she's a werewolf. When one of his colleagues on the force ends up dead, Ken must face the possibility that the murderer may be closer than he thinks. The world premiere of Mark Stein's suspenseful, funny and sexy cop thriller is co-produced with Manitoba Theatre Centre and directed by Manitoba's Artistic Director Steven Schipper.

MARK STEIN is an award-winning playwright whose works have premiered or been produced at South Coast Repertory Theatre, Actors Theatre of Louisville, George Street Playhouse, the Ashland Shakespeare Festival and other prestigious regional theatres. He has written screenplays and made-for-television movies for Steve Martin, John Ritter and others. Mark is currently based on Washington D.C., where he resides with his wife Arlene (cousin of Oxnard resident and Rubicon subscriber Harriet Friedman) and two children. MATING DANCE OF THE WEREWOLF is being co-produced by Manitoba Theatre Centre (MTC) and Rubicon Theatre Company in Winnipeg next April and May under the direction of MTC's Artistic Director Steven Schipper. It will be mounted in Ventura during Rubicon's 2004-2005 season.

AMERICAN MENU by Don Wilson Glenn
Directed by Jenny Sullivan
Saturday, June 21 at 7 pm & Saturday, June 28 at 2 pm
It's 1964; a small town in Texas. Five black women work in the "pressure-cooker" kitchen of a diner that only serves whites. Isolated for hours at a time in their drudgery, with the service bell reminding them of their menial positions, they laugh, they dream, they rage, they offer comfort, and ultimately, they draw strength from each other--to choose from a broader American menu than that their time and circumstances has offered. HATTIE WINSTON and CCH POUNDER are cast.

DON WILSON GLENN is an up-and-coming young playwright based in New York City. AMERICAN MENU is his first produced play. It is currently being produced off-off-Broadway and has received tremendous critical acclaim, including three AUDELCO AWARDS. This presentation is the first professional reading of the play on the West Coast. AMERICAN MENU is in part based on Glenn's mother's life, and is the first play in a trilogy about her experiences entitled THE COLLARD GREEN SISTERS.

OF TIME AND TIDE by Sean Cullen
Directed by Joseph Fuqua
Sunday, June 22 at 2 pm & Sunday, June 29 at 2 pm         
Set during the Korean War, this gripping dramatic story opens with a Baltimore blue-collar family mourning the loss of their oldest son. This non-linear play ebbs and flows through time, building in intensity as it draws to a tender and painful final moment - perhaps the only moment of tenderness in the life of an unlucky but loved young man. In the vein of John Osborne, this rich piece is filled with stormy, vulnerable characters that hide their true feelings in lies and fierce tidal waves of anger. CHUCK O'NEIL, LAUREL LYLE and others are cast.

SEAN CULLEN's OF TIME AND TIDE has previously been given readings at the Huntington Theatre (Boston), the Old Globe Theatre (San Diego) and in Manhattan at Theatre for a New Audience. Cullen's first script CITY HIGH: "INITIATION," a television pilot for a dramatic series co-created with Charles Schultz, was a finalist at the New Harmony Project. Cullen made his Broadway acting debut in the Tony-Award winning JAMES JOYCE'S THE DEAD, adapted and directed by Richard Nelson. Most recently, he appeared Off-Broadway in Mr. Nelson's THE GENERAL FROM AMERICA (featuring Corin Redgrave), at Theatre for a New Audience. Cullen is currently at work in New York on the establishment of the American National Theatre at Ground Zero.

THE UNHINGED: A DREAD & DREKFEST AT THE BED & BREAKFAST ON A PROMONTORY BY A STORMY SEA by Tony Abatemarco
Directed by Tony Abatemarco
Sunday, June 22 at 7 pm & Sunday, June 29 at 7 pm
Inspired by the late Charles Ludlam's Ridiculous Theatre Company, THE UNHINGED is a clever comedy/mystery set in a bed and breakfast on an island off the coast of Cape Cod. In the production, two male actors play a variety of wild characters ranging from a young chambermaid to an ex-nun to a hunchbacked policeman. TONY ABATEMARCO and JOHN FLECK are cast.

TONY ABATEMARCO is a Los Angeles-ased director, actor and writer. He directed JulieHarris in LUCIFER'S CHILD on Broadway and for A & E. In addition, he was the first Artistic Director of the Jacques D'Amboise National Dance Institute in Los Angeles. His most recent original one-man show, COLOGNE, has received critical acclaim Off-Broadway and at Santa Fe Stages. Abatemarco has won numerous awards in L.A., including an Ovation Award for Lead Performance for Charles Ludlam's THE MYSTERY OF IRMA VEP. e is the recipient of two NEA Fellowships, and was founding director of The Accident Theatre and The Night House. In addition to his New York credits, he has directed at Pasadena Playhouse, Mark Taper Forum, Sante Fe Stages and Arena Stage. Last year, he appeared in five feature films including "I Am Sam," and has guest starred on more than three dozen television shows, including "The Division," "Leap of Faith," "The District," "Frazier," "Profiler" and "E.R."

ABOUT RUBICON THEATRE COMPANY
Rubicon Theatre Company is Ventura's non-profit professional theatre company. Founded in 1998 by James O'Neil and Karyl Lynn Burns, the mission of the company is to present a diverse season of classic and contemporary comedies, dramas and musicals for the entertainment, enrichment and education of residents of, and visitors to, the region. Rubicon Theatre Company performs in the intimate 200-seat Laurel, a renovated church originally built in the 1920s. Rubicon has declared the "anchor" of Ventura's new Downtown Cultural District by City Council proclamation. Since its inception, Rubicon Theatre Company has played to more than 120,000 individuals and 20,000 students.

 


 

A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE

 


Linda Purl gives a harrowing performance as Blanche DuBois  and Tom Astor is refreshingly complex as Stanley Kowalski in “A Streetcar Named Desire” in Ventura.

Actress Linda Purl and Tom Astor as
Blanche Dubois and Stanley in Tennessee Williams' "A Streetcar Named Desire."
Linda Purl experiences the kindness of Eric Lange..

(Photos courtesy of Rubicon Theatre Company)


I received an e-mail from Diane Smith at RTC today (4/4&7/03) which mentions Joseph as follows:

"...I still have to get Joseph to look at your page. I have not forgotten that. The good thing is that he will be sticking around for quite some time, since he is also doing a part in "A Streetcar Named Desire" (our next show)....I will have to check what role Joseph is doing in Streetcar, but it is one of those minor card player roles. I will let you know once I know for sure."

For those who are not familiar with this classic show, here is the synopsis, as it appears on the RTC website:

Emotionally riveting and immensely satisfying with dazzling dramatic turns, Tennessee Williams' most famous play follows the fading fortunes of Blanche Dubois, a fragile Southern belle who seeks a refuge from the harsh reality of the world in her own illusions. She sojourns to Elysian Fields, the New Orleans address of her younger sister Stella, in hopes of beginning anew. But when Blanche arrives, she finds her sister pregnant and living a bleak, low-class existence with her brutish husband Stanley, just returned from the war. Stanley's treatment of Stella and raw animal sensuality both repels and attracts Blanche. This popular classic stars Linda Purl in a role made famous by Jessica Tandy, Vivien Leigh and Uta Hagen. Rubicon's Artistic Director James O'Neil directs.



UPDATE 4/26/03:

A link to the 4/24/03 InsideVC.com article: "Getting There: "A Streetcar Named Desire"":

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/entertainment/article/0,1375,VCS_232_1909670,00.html

Rubicon Theatre Company will present preview performances of the Tennessee Williams classic 8 p.m. April 24-25, with an opening night gala 7 p.m. April 26 and performances at various times through May 25 at The Laurel, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura. Tickets are $28 for previews, $33-$43 for regular performances, depending on the day, and $100 for the gala opening. Call 667-2900 for ticket information or visit www.rubicontheatre.org.

Here is a link to the 4/24/03 InsideVC.com article entitled: "Rubicon Takes Over 'Streetcar'". The show opened the night this article was published:

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_1909668,00.html

A link to the Santa Barbara News Press 4/25-5/1 Scene Online Article entitled: "Purl's wisdom" (this is an abstract, and you have to subscribe to read the entire article, which, considering the fact that it is in THIS WEEK'S ISSUE, I think is totally ludicrous):

http://www.newspress.com/SceneOnline/onstageindex.html

OR

http://www.newspress.com/SceneOnline/_onstage1.html


"When the Rubicon Theatre Company opens its production of "A Streetcar Named Desire" Saturday night, Linda Purl will get to speak one of Williams' best-known and most heartbreaking lines: "I have always depended upon the kindness of strangers."

The veteran actress knows for a fact that the statement is autobiographical. Thirty years ago, the great playwright depended upon the kindness of a couple of strangers who happened to be Purl's parents.

Their close encounter took place in Japan, where Purl grew up. "My parents were long-term residents of Tokyo and long-term supporters of the arts," she said."



And the LA Times 4/28/03 calendarlive listing for "Streetcar:

http://events.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-Search-X!EventDetail-71324,00.html

A Streetcar Named Desire

Rubicon Theatre Company at the Laurel  
1006 E. Main St., Ventura

Linda Purl plays Blanche Dubois, the fragile fading belle in Tennesee Williams' classic drama. Rubicon's Artistic Director James O'Neil directs.

Through May 25
Wed., 7 p.m.; Thu.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., 2 p.m.

Price: $33-$54
Tickets: Box office: 805-667-2900.


On March 26, 2003, immediately after the opening night's performance of "Streetcar", Lynn & Stephen Kipp graciously opened up their home for a fabulous gala party which was attended by the entire cast. Here is a picture of Joseph at that party with Bernie Novatt:


Bernie Novatt with Joseph Fuqua (upstairs neighbor Steve)

Photo courtesy of Steve & Cynde Magidson

Here is a link to the LATimes 4/30/03 review of "Streetcar", entitled: "Beyond the icons to the soul of 'Streetcar'":

http://www.calendarlive.com/cl-et-brandes30apr30.story

"...The Kowalskis' rowdy upstairs neighbors (Laurel Lyle, Joseph Fuqua) and other peripheral characters expand the piece to embrace the hedonism of 1947 New Orleans, although the intimate stage dictates occasional awkward blocking. ..."


Here is a link to the VCReporter's (Ventura County Reporter) 5/2/03 review of "Streetcar", entitled: "Dark desire - Williams’ Streetcar stops at the Rubicon":

http://www.vcreporter.com/fineart.htm

"The rest of the cast is rounded out by Eric Lange as Mitch, Joseph Fuqua as Steve and Laurel Lyle as Eunice."


Here is a link to the 5/1/03 InsideVC.com's  review of "Streetcar", entitled: "Rubicon captures "Streetcar's" shattered illusions":

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_1927334,00.html

"...Rounding out the colorful cast are Joseph Fuqua and Laurel Lyle as the squabbling neighbors the Hubbells..."


A link to the Santa Barbara News Press 5/3/03 "Streetcar" review entitled: "A 'streetcar' into darkness" (again, this is an abstract, because the paper insists you subscribe to read the entire article, even if you aren't local - and that, to me, is pretty preposterous): 

http://inferno.newspress.com/2003/05/03/050303streetcar.htm

"...It is probably inevitable that Linda Purl, one of the finest American actors of her generation, would eventually tackle the towering role of Blanche DuBois in "A Streetcar Named Desire...."


UPDATE 5/8/03:

Received this Press Release from Karyl Lynn Burns on the Rubicon -Patrons2 E-Mail List:

PRESS RELEASE

Tickets: Rubicon Theatre Company (805) 667-2900
www.rubicontheatre.org

For Immediate Release:  May 6, 2003
ATTN: Feature/Entertainment/Theatre/Calendar

RUBICON'S "A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE" IS A RUNAWAY HIT!

· Critics Rave: "Resonates with Unexpected Urgency" (LA Times), "Penetrating
      and Passionate" (Santa Barbara News Press), "Linda Purl Transforms Herself
      into Blanche" (Ventura County Star), "A Truly Stellar Cast," (Ventura County
      Reporter).
· Extension Announced - Now Plays through Sunday, June 1!

(Ventura, California, May 6, 2003) - "James O'Neil's emotionally-charged staging is a success," writes Tom Jacobs in the Santa Barbara News Press. "Linda Purl's performance leaves you gasping in awe," he continues. Other critics agree: Rubicon's production of "A Streetcar Named Desire" is a runaway hit.

Rubicon Artistic Director James O'Neil directs the large ensemble production. In addition to Ms. Purl, whose credits include Broadway, Off-Broadway, regional theatre, and several television series, the cast includes Tom Astor ("The Glass Menagerie") as Stanley, and the Rubicon debut of Tami Tappan Damiano ("Miss Saigon" on Broadway) as Stella, and Eric Lange ("Asylum" at The Court Theatre) as Mitch. Also featured are Julio Alcala, Jr., John Fink, JOSEPH FUQUA, Linda Livingston, Laurel Lyle, Chuck O'Neil, and Lucia Renteria. (For the extension week, Bill Egan steps into the role currently played by John Fink.)

"A Streetcar Named Desire" has just been extended through June 1, 2003. Regular performances are Wednesdays at 7 p.m. (a new time), Thursdays and Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 2 and 8 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m. All performances are at Rubicon's home The Laurel, 1006 E. Main Street in Ventura's Downtown Cultural District. Ticket prices range from $32 to $43, with discounts available for groups, seniors, students and military. To charge by phone, call (805) 667-2900; or visit the box office at 1006 E. Main Street (Laurel Street entrance).

The Critics Rave
"Williams' masterpiece is often performed but seldom as well, or as nuanced, as we find it at the Rubicon... Neither Linda Purl as Blanche nor Tom Astor as Stanley are iconic figures. Rather, they find their ways to the souls of their characters through precision and nuance, transforming a work commonly presented as a star vehicle into the broader human tableau Williams intended… Purl's harrowing performance tracing [Blanche's] descent will deservedly mark a career highlight… Astor's Stanley… is refreshingly complex…. [As Mitch,] Eric Lange is heartbreaking… Tami Tappan Damiano's Stella exudes the smoldering sexuality that cements her marriage to Stanley… Director James O'Neil… displays a firm hand with the intricate rhythm and pace of Williams' poetic dialogue." Los Angeles Times, "Beyond the Icons to the Soul of 'Streetcar'" by Philip Brandes, 4/30/03.

"It is probably inevitable that Linda Purl, one of the finest American actors of her generation, would eventually tackle the towering role of Blanche… it is our good fortune that she has chosen to do so in Rubicon's penetrating and passionate production of William's masterpiece… James O'Neil's emotionally-charged staging is a success…Ms. Purl's performance leaves you gasping in awe. She is virtuosic, never showy. Williams'… language flows off her tongue with astonishing ease… even as her body language reveals the anguish and fear lucking just beneath her refined demeanor… But 'Streetcar is far more than a one-woman show… Mr. Astor conveys both Stanley's fear and anger with chilling effectiveness." Santa Barbara News Press, "A 'Streetcar' Into Darkness" by Tom Jacobs, 5/3/03

"Purl transforms herself into Blanche from the moment she steps falteringly off the streetcar… to the final shattering scene… Purl perfectly reflects the chameleon quality of Blanche: the guile, the desperate giddiness, the fear, the contempt, the helplessness…[Astor] is playing against type as Stanley… [as he is ] far more handsome than Brando ever was… Damiano's Stella is warm and generous… As Mitch, Lange is appealingly awkward in his early scenes and convincing in this later actions… In Rubicon's professional style, all of 'Streetcar's' technical elements contribute effectively to the impact of the play." Ventura County Star, "Rubicon Captures 'Streetcar's' Shattered Illusions by Rita Moran, 5/1/03

"Though it was written and first produced over a half century ago, the themes are just as vibrant today… A stellar truly cast… Tom Astor in a charged performance as Stanley… and renowned theater and television actor Linda Purl playing Blanche with both fragility and power. The two actors throw sparks off one another throughout the play… Astor thunders through the set with ferocity… Purl takes Blanche through a brutal transformation that is awesome to behold… [her] performance is as complex as the character is drawn… Damiano is well cast, playing the part with a depth and sensitivity and feeling, giving the audience reason to want to like Stanley as much as she loves him… A gorgeous two-level set inside the intimate Laurel Theater [gives] the space an authentic and unique southern aura." Ventura County Reporter, "Dark Desire" by Alex Field, 5/2/03.

Next At The Rubicon
·New Special Event. "Four Green Fields," May 12 and May 13, 2003 at 7 p.m.  Rubicon presents a special event featuring David Birney, Bairbre Dowling and other renowned actors of Irish descent. This special event is a concert reading of Irish poetry and prose with excerpts by Stoker, Wilde, Shaw, Yeats, Synge and others. Tickets are $30 general admission; $15 for subscribers. Jewel Club members receive two free tickets, subject to availability at the time of request. 

·Dates just finalized! Plays-in-Progress June 21 - June 29, 2003.  This reading program of new plays in development in June includes "American Menu" by New York-based playwright Don Glenn; "Mating Dance of the Werewolf" by Mark Stein (who also authored "Relativity and "At Long Last Leo"); and Of Time And Tide by Sean Cullen. Directors for the program are Jenny Sullivan, Steven Schipper (Artistic Director of Manitoba Theatre Center in Canada), and JOSEPH FUQUA, respectively. Tickets are $10 per reading, $25 for the series. Patron tickets, with special seating and an invitation to a private party with the artists, are $100, and include a $65 tax-deductible contribution to Rubicon's new works program.

Newly added: "Sylvia" July 10 - August 10, 2003. Rubicon's "Sylvia" is romping back for a return engagement. The production features the cast from the last summer's hit at Rubicon. Joe Spano, Laurie Walters, Marc Cardiff --and Kristi Lynes as the irrepressible mutt who steals their hearts.

August 28 - September 28, 2003. In Rubicon's sparkling late summer offering, the need for approval and acceptance is challenged by three friends' differing opinions related to a piece of modern art. The production stars Daniel Davis (currently in "Talking Heads" on Broadway; previously in "Invention of Love" and "Wrong Mountain" on Broadway; "The nanny" on TV). Richard Thomas ("The Waltons"), London Company of "Art", and JOSEPH FUQUA.


Rubicon Theatre Company is Ventura's non-profit professional theatre company.  Founded in 1998 by James O'Neil and Karyl Lynn Burns, the mission of the company is to present a diverse season of classic and contemporary comedies, dramas and musicals for the entertainment and enrichment of residents of, and visitors to, the region. Rubicon Theatre Company performs in the intimate 200-seat Laurel, a renovated church originally built in the 1920s. Rubicon was declared the "anchor" of Ventura's Downtown Cultural District by City Council proclamation.


# # #


Calendar Editors, please note:

Now EXTENDED through June 1, 2003
Rubicon Theatre Company presents Tennessee Williams' Masterpiece
"A Streetcar Named Desire"
Renowned stage and television actress Linda Purl is Blanche DuBois, a fading Southern beauty who seeks refuge from the harsh world and her crude and powerful brother-in-law in her own illusions and "the kindness of strangers." Rubicon's Artistic Director James O'Neil directs a cast that also includes Tom Astor ("The Glass Menagerie") as Stanley, the Rubicon debut of Tami Tappan Damiano ("Miss Saigon" on Broadway) as Stella, and Eric Lange ("Asylum" at The Court Theatre) as Mitch.

Early Bird Wednesdays: 7 p.m.; Thursdays & Fridays: 8 p.m.; Saturdays: 2 p.m. & 8 p.m.; Sundays: 2 p.m.

Tickets: $33-$43; Discounts for groups, seniors, students and military.

Rubicon Theatre Company at The Laurel, 1006 E. Main Street, Ventura, CA,
Box Office: (805) 667-2900 or
www.rubicontheatre.org.

 


 

DANCING AT LUGHNASA

Precious Chong and Joseph Fuqua give impressive performances in "Dancing at Lughnasa," which runs through March 30 at The Laurel in Ventura.

Gerry (Joseph Fuqua) is likely at it again, regaling Chris (Precious Chong) with exactly what she wants to hear.



Stephanie Zimbalist and Joseph Fuqua in "Dancing at Lughnasa".

Precious Chong and Joseph Fuqua in "Dancing
at Lughnasa".


Stephanie Zimbalist, Bonnie Franklin and Joseph Fuqua in "Dancing at Lughnasa".



All Photos Courtesy of The Rubicon Theatre Company


Brian Friel's exquisitely poetic memory play "Dancing at Lughnasa," which reveals the repressed longings of a poor Catholic farm family in Ireland, circa 1936. Actresses Bonnie Franklin and Stephanie Zimbalist have just joined the previously announced cast of Susan Clark, James O'Neil, Joseph Fuqua and Karyl Lynn Burns. Other casting will be completed by mid-November. Jenny Sullivan directs.


UPDATE: 2/3/03:

Received this e-mail from Karyl Lynn Burns today, concerning the 2003 RTC Season, and detailing "Dancing At Lughnasa":

MENTION THIS E-MAIL AND SAVE $2 PER TICKET!

STAR-STUDDED CAST ANNOUNCED
FOR RUBICON'S "DANCING AT LUGHNASA"
AWARD-WINNING MAGICAL IRISH MEMORY PLAY


* Opens Saturday, March 1 and continues through Sunday, March 30 (Previews February 26-28).
* Written by Brian Friel, Directed by Jenny Sullivan
* Starring Susan Clark, Bonnie Franklin and Stephanie Zimbalist, and featuring Karyl Lynn Burns, Precious Chong,  Joseph Fuqua, Michael O'Hagan and James O'Neil
* Subscriptions Still Available! Three- or Four-Show Packages on Sale Now Starting at $75; Single Tickets Start at $26

(Ventura, California, February 3, 2003) - Tickets are now on sale for Brian Friel's exquisitely poetic memory play "Dancing at Lughnasa" which reveals the repressed longings of a poor Catholic farm family in Ireland, circa 1936. Rubicon Theatre Company produces Friel's semi-autobiographical play, which won the Olivier® Award in London and the Tony® Award on Broadway for "Best Play."

Rubicon's "Dancing at Lughnasa" opens Saturday, March 1, and continues through March 30, 2003. Discounted previews are Wednesday, February 26 through Friday, February 28. Regular performances are Wednesdays at 7 p.m. (a new time this season for weeknight early birds), Thursdays and Fridays at 8 pm, Saturdays at 2 and 8 pm and Sundays at 2 pm.

Tickets prices for "Dancing at Lughnasa" range from $26 to $43, with discounts available for groups, seniors, students and military. Tickets for the Saturday, March 1 Opening Night Gala tickets are priced at $150 and include the show, intermission refreshments catered by Regina's Quality Catering and a complimentary Irish themed post-show party with local dignitaries and the cast. Two Wednesday night "Talk Back" nights are scheduled for March 5 and12. "Food for Thought" pre-show dinners are offered Fridays, March 7 and March 14.

Mini-series subscriptions to the 2003 productions are still available. A three-show subscription includes "Lughnasa"; the upcoming "A Streetcar Named Desire" with Linda Purl; and "Art" with Daniel Davis, Joseph Fuqua and Richard Thomas at a 10% savings with reserved seats. Four-show packages (an 18% savings) include the recently announced summer revival of Rubicon's highly acclaimed production of "Sylvia" with the original cast (Marc Cardiff, Kristi Lynes, Joe Spano and Laurie Walters). Subscriptions start at just $75.

To charge by phone, call (805) 667-2900; or visit the box office at 1006 E. Main Street (Laurel Street Entrance) in Downtown Ventura's Cultural District. 

The "Lughnasa" Sisters
In "Dancing at Lughnasa," Emmy® Award-winning actress Susan Clark plays the eldest sister Kate, a schoolteacher and the wager-earned of the family. Clark was most recently seen in Rubicon's "A Christmas Memory" last December with Robert Morse. She received her Emmy for her portrayal of golfer and Olympic Gold Medalist Babe Zaharias. 

Earthy, effervescent Maggie is portrayed by Bonnie Franklin, a television and Broadway actress perhaps best known for her long-running role on the series "One Day at a Time." She was nominated for a Tony® Award for her role in "Applause" on Broadway. Franklin, a local Ventura resident, makes her Rubicon debut in "Lughnasa."

Stephanie Zimbalist (Rubicon's "The Rainmaker"/"Love Letters") returns to Rubicon as the nurturing Aggie, who takes in knitting to help support the family. Zimbalist recently appeared in "Side Man" at the Guthrie Theatre, and is perhaps best known for her role as Laura Holt in "Remington Steele" for NBC.

Rubicon Founder Karyl Lynn Burns returns to the stage after a two-year hiatus to portray the simple-minded Rose. Burns. She has appeared in Rubicon's productions of "Shirley Valentine," "Love Letters" (with husband James O'Neil), "A Coupla White Chicks…" and "The Little Foxes."

Precious Chong is the gentle dreamer Chris, Michael's mother. Rubicon Theatre audiences will remember Chong her as "Laura" in "The Glass Menagerie." Her film credits include "L.A. Confidential," "Grace of My Heart" and "Pearl Harbor."

The "Lughnasa" Men
Joseph Fuqua is the charming ne'er-do-well Gerry, who is Michael's father. Fuqua is a Rubicon Company regular, most recently seen in "Old Wicked Songs". Fuqua also appeared in "Murder in the First", "The Rainmaker" (for which he won a Robby Award), "The Little Foxes", "The Boys Next Door", and "The Glass Menagerie." Fuqua is a Yale School of Drama graduate. He plays General Jeb Stuart in the recently released feature film "Gods and Generals."

Ireland's own Michael O'Hagan makes his Rubicon debut as Uncle Jack. O'Hagan has appeared in productions at London's National Theatre in Dublin. Since moving to America, O'Hagan has appeared at Long Wharf, New Haven, and South Coast Rep.

Rubicon Founder and Artistic Director James O'Neil plays Michael, as both an adult looking back, and as a seven-year-old boy. O'Neil recently appeared with Rubicon as Noah in "The Rainmaker." A graduate of Cal Arts, O'Neil's has appeared regionally with Alabama Shakespeare Festival, the American Heartland Theatre in Kansas City, and Santa Barbara Civic Light Opera (John Adams in "1776."). O'Neil played Pontius Pilate in the National Tour of "Jesus Christ Superstar" with Ted Neeley and Carl Anderson.

The Director
Director Jenny Sullivan is best known for developing new works. Her directing credits include "Ad Wars" (with David Dukes and Stephanie Zimbalist), "Wish Fulfillment" (Drama-Logue Award), "A Mother, A Daughter and a Gun," "The Cat's Meow" and "Very Truly Yours" with Jeffrey Kober and Edward Albert. She directed the world premiere of "The Baby Dance" at Pasadena Playhouse, and subsequent productions at Williamstown Theatre Festival, Long Wharf Theatre (CT Critics' Directing Award) and the Lucille Lortel Theatre Off-Broadway. Sullivan has directed locally with Access Theatre and Lobero Theatre Company. Recent credits include "Marvin's Room" and "Proof" for LA Theatreworks, and she is slated to direct a world premiere at Pasadena Playhouse following Lughnasa". 

Production Credits
Collaborating on this production are Tom Giamario/Giatheatrix for Set Design and Construction, Kathi O'Donohue for Lighting Design, Marcy Froehlich for Costume Design, Karyl Lynn Burns and Jenny Sullivan for Sound Design, and Judi Lewin for Hair and Make-up Design. Kathleen Parsons is Production Stage Manager, Brian McDonald is the Production Manager and Kenny Hobbs is Technical Director.

About "Dancing at Lughnasa" by Brian Friel
Brian Friel's "Dancing at Lughnasa" is the capstone of a prolific career. "Lughnasa" won critical acclaim and an 1991 Olivier® Award as the best play of the season - and was the first modern Irish play to achieve wide popularity in England. Upon its arrival in America in 1992 with the original cast, "Lughnasa" won the Tony® Award for "Best Play", the New York Drama Critics' Award and the Outer Critics' Award, plus two Drama Desk Awards.  

This magical memory play follows Michael, grown up and long gone from his home in rural Ireland, as he recalls the characters who shaped his life as a young boy:  his carefree and charming father, his uncle, a missionary returned from Africa, his unmarried aunts -- and his mother. The luminous story teems with humanity as it reveals the passion and longings felt by a family unable to control their own destiny. Clive Barnes, in the New York Post, called "Dancing at Lughnasa," "a remarkable play, a wondrous experience in a memory-lock of time and place, an evocation of people, ritual, religious, paganism and that dance of life which seems to push us."

Ireland's pre-eminent dramatist, Friel also wrote: "Philadelphia, Here I Come!", "Aristocrats," "Faith Healer" and "Translations." "Lughnasa" and almost all his other plays take place in Ballybeg, a mythical town in Donegal invented by Friel. In Gaelic, it is baile beag, which literally means "small town." For Friel, Ballybeg is an amalgam of rural Ireland and other small towns around the world. 

"Dancing at Lughnasa" is a fictionalized version of the author's own family. The summer of 1936 was the last time the five unmarried Mundy sisters (Friel's aunts) spent together in the village of the Ballybeg before whim and hardship sent them their separate ways. Dedicated to the memory of his "five brave Glenties' women," and "out of piety" for his mother and her sisters, each of the characters bears the first name of the real-life model on which she is based.

About Rubicon Theatre Company
Rubicon Theatre Company is Ventura's premiere non-profit professional theatre company. Founded in 1998 by James O'Neil and Karyl Lynn Burns, the mission of the company is to present a diverse season of classic and contemporary comedies, dramas and musicals for the entertainment, enrichment and education of residents of, and visitors to, the region. Rubicon Theatre Company performs in the intimate 200-seat Laurel, a historic 1920s church renovated by Doug Halter and Joe Murray. Rubicon has been declared the anchor of Ventura's Downtown Cultural District by City Council proclamation. "Dancing at Lughnasa" is part of the company's Fifth Anniversary Season. Rubicon has presented 26 productions to more than 106,000 attendees and has reached more than 18,000 students through daytime matinees at the theatre, classes and workshops.


About "A Place to Belong"
Rubicon's 2003 Mini-Season is entitled "A Place to Belong." Upcoming shows are as follows:

* "A Streetcar Named Desire" is the story of the fragile Blanche, a fading Southern beauty who seeks refuge from the harsh world and her crude and powerful brother- in-law in her own illusions and "the kindness of strangers." Linda Purl stars as Blanche. Rubicon's Artistic Director James O'Neil directs.

* In Rubicon's sparkling summer offering, the need for approval and acceptance is challenged by three friends' differing opinions related to a piece of modern "Art." The production stars Daniel Davis ("The Invention of Love," "Wrong Mountain" on Broadway/"The Nanny" on TV), Richard Thomas ("The Waltons"/London company of "Art") and Joseph Fuqua.

* NEWLY ADDED: Rubicon's "Sylvia" is romping back for a return engagement from July 10 through August 17. It features the cast from last summer's hit production: Joe Spano, Laurie Walters, Mark Cardiff -- and Kristi Lynes as the irrepressible mutt who steals their hearts.

* A Plays-in-Progress reading program in June includes "American Menu" by New York based playwright Don Glenn; "Mating Dance of the Werewolf" by Mark Stein (who also authored "Relativity" and "At Long Last Leo" and whose works have premiered at South Coast Rep, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Oregon Shakespeare Festival, and elsewhere); and "Of Time and Tide" by Sean Cullen. Directors for the program are Jenny Sullivan, Stephen Shipper (Artistic Director of Manitoba Theatre Center), and Joseph Fuqua, respectively.

Hotel and Pre-Show Dinner Packages for "Dancing at Lughnasa"
Hotel and theatre packages for "Dancing at Lughnasa" are available at the Pierpont Inn, a Craftsman style inn built in 1910 which offers old-world charm and hospitality with modern amenities; and the new Marriott Beach Hotel in Ventura.

"Early Bird" dining packages are also available weeknights at Austen's at the Peripont Inn and other local restaurants. Call the box office for more information.

Pre-show "Food for Thought" themed dinner packages are available the first two Fridays of the regular run catered by Regina's Quality Catering. For "Dancing At Lughnasa's Irish Delights" the menu is: Donegal Potato Soup, Lamb chops with Mint Sauce, Carrots Ballybeg, Bread Pudding with Whiskey Sauce, plus Irish Coffee or tea. The dinners are served downstairs in the rehearsal room in Laby Hall at 6:15 p.m. During dessert, Director Jenny Sullivan and Production Manager Brian McDonald will provide insight into the rehearsal process and background information on the play and performers. The cost for dinner, a glass or wine, complimentary non-alcoholic beverages, tax and tip is $30; $25 for Rubicon subscribers.

Community Support
"Dancing at Lughnasa" is sponsored through the generosity of Sandra and Jordon Laby, Hammer-Hewson Associates, and San Buenaventura Foundation for the Arts. Co-presenters are Lainie and Dr. Peter Cannon, K. G. Solutions and Van Gundy and Sons Jewelers. Underwriting for the Guest Director position is provided by Scripps Howard Foundation (Ventura County Star).

Tickets for "Dancing at Lughnasa"
$26 Wednesday preview at 7 p.m.
$28 Thursday and Friday previews at 8 p.m.
$33 Wednesdays at 7 p.m.; Thursdays at 8 p.m.; Saturdays and Sundays at 2 p.m.
$38 Friday nights at 8 p.m.
$43 Saturday nights at 8 p.m.
$150 Opening Night Gala at 7 p.m.

Discounts for groups, seniors, students and military are available. Order at (805) 667-2900 or in person at Rubicon Theatre Company's box office at The Laurel, 1006 E. Main Street, Suite 300, Ventura, CA 93001.

Calendar Editors, please note:

March 1-30, 2003 (Previews February 26-28)
Rubicon Theatre Company presents
"Dancing at Lughnasa," the Tony and Olivier Award-winning memory play about an Irish family in the 1930s, featuring a star-studded cast including Susan Clark, Bonnie Franklin and Stephanie Zimbalist. Presented by Ventura's non-profit professional theatre company.

Wednesday, February 26 at 7 p.m.- preview
Thursday, February 27 at 8 p.m. - preview
Friday, February 28 at 8 p.m.- preview
Saturday, March 1 at 7 p.m. - Gala Opening Night
March 2 through March 30: Early Bird Wednesdays at 7 p.m., Thursdays and Fridays at 8 p.m., Saturdays at 2 and 8 p.m., Sundays at 2 p.m.

Talkbacks after the first two Wednesday 7 p.m. performances: March 5 & 12
"Food for Thought" pre-show dinners available Friday March 7 and 14

Tickets: $26-$43; Discounts for groups, seniors, students and military.

Rubicon Theatre Company at The Laurel, 1006 E. Main Street, Ventura
Box Office: (805) 667-2900 or
www.rubicontheatre.org.



UPDATE: 3/3/03

ALSO:  Karyl Lynn Burns sent me this e-mail today (3/3/03) on the latest from RTC:

Monday, March 3, 2003

Dear Patrons:

Find out how to get the most out of your subscription!

Tonight we invite you to our first ever "Meet Your Seat" event at the theatre (as mentioned in the recent brochure mailing!)

Join us at 6:00 p.m. for the following:

* A brief history of Rubicon with James O'Neil
* Information on our mission and goals with Karyl Lynn Burns
* Your benefits as a subscriber 
* Information about various volunteer opportunities or club memberships
*     Rubicon's spring and summer class schedule for kids
* A chance to meet all of the Rubicon staff and Rubicon's first company member
     Joseph Fuqua (who has appeared in 6 Rubicon productions)
*    The world of the current play and live program notes

and MORE!

While you're here, we'll be happy to personally assist you with tickets or seat exchanges or provide you with any personal attention or information.  We'd also like to get feedback from you about the types of shows you enjoy, how we're doing from a service standpoint, etc.

We hope to see you this evening.

Karyl Lynn Burns
Executive Director
Rubicon Theatre Company

P.S.  If you are not currently a subscriber and would just like to hear more about the benefits of subscribing and ask questions in person, please feel free to join.

 

UPDATE: 3/16/03:

Here is the Rubicon Website's description of "Dancing at Lughnasa":

February 26 thru March 30, 2003

Winner of the Tony and Olivier Awards, this magnificent memory play is pure theatrical magic! Michael, grown up and long gone from his home in rural Ireland, recalls the characters who shaped his life as a young boy: his carefree and charming father, his uncle, a missionary returned from Africa, his unmarried aunts - and his mother. This luminous story teems with humanity as it reveals the passions and longings felt by a family unable to control their own destiny: Kate, a schoolteacher concerned with appearances; Maggie, wile and strong-willed; Agnes, the responsible sister; Rose, slow and sweet, and Michael's rebellious and loving mother Chris. Jenny Sullivan (The Little Foxes, The Rainmaker) directs. Casting for the sisters includes Susan Clark, Stephanie Zimbalist and Bonnie Franklin. The Rubicon artistic directors, James O'Neil and Karyl Lynn Burns, will also appear.

 

Here is a link to the March 6, 2003 insidevc.com article on "Lughnasa" entitled:  "Franklin takes one dance at a time":

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_1789926,00.html

"...Joseph Fuqua, fresh from playing Gen. Jeb Stuart in the just-released Civil War-era film "Gods and Generals," plays Michael's charming but wandering father, Gerry. Irishman Michael O'Hagan marks his Rubicon debut as Uncle Jack.

Fuqua and O'Neil are Rubicon veterans, as are Clark, Zimbalist, Chong and Burns, four of the sister characters."

 
A link to the March 6, 2003 insidevc.com review entitled:  "Review: 'Dancing' with unfettered abandon":

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_1789915,00.html

"...Michael's father, Gerry, a ne'er-do-well itinerant salesman and a beguiling dreamer who swept Chris off her feet years before and continues to stir her feelings during infrequent visits....Fuqua is marvelous as the smooth but slippery Gerry, with schemes to spare but no results to back up his endless promises...."
 

A link to the Santa Barbara News Press 3/10/03 review entitled: "Lughnasa: Sisters doin' it for themselves":

http://search.newspress.com/2003/03/10/031003lughnasa.htm

(NOTE: This is an abstract, I am attempting to get the complete review via e-mail.)


VC Reporter (Ventura County Reporter) reviewed "Lughnasa" as well, on 3/6/03.  The review was entitled:  "Raising the Eire - Rubicon's Lugnasa a beautifully acted allegory".  Unfortunately, the review was offline by the time I looked for it, but Marty Westlin, very kindly sent it to me, and I am posting it here for all to read, with his credit, of course.

fine arts

Raising the Eire

Rubicon’s Lughnasa a beautifully acted allegory

24 — —March 6, 2003

review

by Martin Jones Westlin

Jack Mundy has returned from Uganda after 25 years of missionary work, decidedly the worse for wear amid disease and fatigue. He’s exchanged his fundamentalist Christian faith for the ways of pagan ritual, ways not unlike those practiced in the Irish hillsides at County Done-gal’s remote Ballybeg. Summer signals incendiary worship of the Celtic god Lugh, benefactor of all things artistic—and Jack’s five sisters are invariably among the revelers. They take to ceremonial dance as a release of the spiritual and sexual repression inherent in the belief system Jack once espoused.

Jack’s rejuvenation is a timely element in Dancing at Lughnasa, the very good current entry from Ventura’s Rubicon Theatre Company. Playwright Brian Friel has cleverly crafted the role as one of two that penetrates the sisters’ lives—Jack (Michael O’Hagan) represents the spiritual upheaval they crave, while vagabond Gerry (Joseph Fuqua) perhaps illustrates their occupation with fleshly pursuits. He once impregnated sister Chris, who gives birth to Michael, narrator of the action. A grown Michael subsequently recalls his childhood in the Ireland of 1936, when even peppy dance music was branded pagan by religious decree.

That kind of allegory drives this beautifully acted production, a memory play that employs recollection to distinct advantage. While Tennessee Williams’ seminal The Glass Menagerie and Peter Shaffer’s gritty The Royal Hunt of the Sun embrace recall as a narrative device, both authors tend to overuse it. Here, Michael (a spot-on James O’Neil) is presented sparingly, inciting our imaginations as to sisters Chris, Agnes, Maggie, Rose and Kate. Their demises are somber affairs, all the more vividly relayed through Michael’s infrequency of monologue.

Each has a distinct assignment—Rose (a wonderful Karyl Lynn Burns) is a sweet, slow-witted lass who pines for the companionship of a married man; the dowdy Agnes (veteran Stephanie Zimbalist) is the dutiful one, patiently knitting gloves as a means of family support. Precious Chong’s single-mom Chris endures the false charms of ex-lover Gerry; Bonnie Franklin’s super Maggie is the sexy eternal optimist; and the iron-willed breadwinner Kate (Susan Clark) is too steeped in Christian piety for her own damn good.

This range of voices does come together to illustrate the sisters’ collective ennui—but sometimes, it takes a while getting there. Although Michael’s speeches help outline the story, they’re skewed ever so slightly toward his memories rather than at the women’s personal plights. The disparity mildly distracts, suggesting an area in which Friel could have executed a little more patience.

Nonetheless, director Jenny Sullivan has conceived a lovely set of experiences. She staged last year’s Old Wicked Songs for the Rubicon and had contained the unwieldy script fairly well through her economical concepts—the vast array of choreography here presents an entirely different challenge, and Sullivan is up to it. Watch and smile as her charges fuss and fume over the tenuously operating radio, itself a major character in the show. More than anything, the wireless is the sisters’ link to the music of life between the yearly celebrations.

Tom Giamario worked with Sullivan in 2002 as well, having designed her excellent set. He shows the same acumen here—the slumping rockery along stage right is a wondrous embodiment of the sisters’ austerity.

When Lughnasa came out as a movie in 1998, film critic Roger Ebert lamented he’d been much more affected by the play’s live presentation. "Up there on the stage," he wrote in the Chicago Sun-Times, "[the characters] took on allegorical dimensions, while in the close-ups of film, they are too present, too close, too specific." Roger’s commentary says everything about the chasmically opposite objectives of cinema and stage. This time, in the Rubicon’s case, the theater clearly wins.

This review is based on the performance of March 2.

Martin Jones Westlin’s e-mail is marty@vcreporter.com.

Dancing at Lughnasa

Through March 30

Laurel Theatre, Ventura

 

Philip Brandes' March 5, 2003 Los Angeles Times review:

http://pqasb.pqarchiver.com/latimes/300235321.html?MAC=ec262d94f0245bb568a42e89f28e777c&did=300235321&FMT=FT&FMTS=FT&PMID=7683&desc=THEATER+REVIEW%3b+Dancing+as+fast+as+they+can%3b+Pagan+spirit+--+and+strong+performances+--+drive+the+Rubicon+Theatre%27s+delicate+dance+of+hope+and+despair.#

THEATER REVIEW; Dancing as fast as they can; Pagan spirit -- and strong performances -- drive the Rubicon Theatre's delicate dance of hope and despair.


The Los Angeles Times; Los Angeles, Calif.; Mar 5, 2003; Philip Brandes;

(Copyright The Times Mirror Company; Los Angeles Times 2003. All rights reserved.)

It takes exceptionally fluid performances to maneuver through the intricate, emotional steps of "Dancing at Lughnasa," Brian Friel's achingly eloquent memory play about an impoverished rural Irish family facing a pivotal end-of-summer harvest season in 1936. Ventura's Rubicon Theatre Company proves up to the challenge, with a stellar cast that evokes a bygone era in a foreign land with convincing naturalism. As in the dramas of Chekhov, the play's meandering story line is likely to puzzle some viewers and frustrate others, but those it touches will be deeply moved by Friel's portrait of unraveling familial ties.

Embodying the friction point between harsh practical reality and the creative imagination, the play's semi-autobiographical reminiscences about growing up in a household of five unmarried sisters are steeped in felt truth rather than literal fact. "Atmosphere is more real than incident," explains Friel's stand-in narrator, Michael (James O'Neil), who participates in these memories as the voice of his 7-year-old self, and provides rueful commentary from an adult perspective.

The all-important sense of family -- with its crisscrossed affections and loyalties -- is palpable among the five Mundy sisters. If stern, uptight teacher Kate (Susan Clark) squashes any attempt at frivolity, it's because she feels the weight of keeping the household together. Beset by broader forces beyond her control, Kate desperately complains that "cracks are appearing everywhere" -- from political upheaval in the impending formation of the breakaway Republic of Ireland to the rising repressive authority of Irish Catholicism to the advancing industrialization that destroys the family's way of life.

This wide array of external pressures aligned against the Mundys, so obvious to Friel's native audience, are only alluded to in passing -- the play's focus is on their human ramifications. A nearby factory threatens to take away the knitting livelihood of enigmatic Agnes (Stephanie Zimbalist), a deep thinker of few words, and sweet but heartbreakingly simple-minded Rose (Karyl Lynn Burns), who requires constant care. In even more fragile condition is their elder brother, Jack (Michael O'Hagan), recently returned from decades of missionary service in Uganda and tainted with primitive rituals and beliefs that threaten the family's standing in the community.

Michael's mother, Chris (Precious Chong), the youngest Mundy, is torn between hard-headed realism and romantic longing in the face of a return visit from Michael's likable but useless father, Gerry (Joseph Fuqua). With Kate on the edge of collapse, it's up to the acerbic, chain-smoking Maggie (Bonnie Franklin, in a particularly effective turn) to provide the emotional heart of the clan.

Reuniting several members of the Rubicon's hit revival of "The Rainmaker," Jenny Sullivan's staging strikes a similar tone of hope amid adversity, with various manifestations of dancing providing the wellspring of rejuvenation. Some rough edges are evident in the opening scenes as the performers try (a bit too hard) to establish their characters, pulling attention in too many directions at the same time, and some accent refinement would benefit the monologues. But the production soon hits its stride with a well-choreographed outburst of spontaneous pagan revelry, and never looks back.

*

'Dancing at Lughnasa'

Where: Laurel Theatre, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura

When: Wednesdays, 7 p.m.; Thursdays, Fridays, 8 p.m.; Saturdays, 2 and 8 p.m.; Sundays, 2 p.m.

Ends: March 30

Price: $26 to $43

Contact: (805) 667-2900

Running time: 2 hours, 55 minutes


A link to the Showmag.com review entitled: "A Pair of Irish Memory Plays (the review also talks about Laguna Playhouse's production of "Lovers at Versailles"):

http://www.showmag.com/theater/theater540.html


Here's another link, which has an abstract of all of "Lughnasa's" reviews in it:

http://www.barkerductions.com/theaters/rubicon/rubicon.html


RUBICON'S "DANCING AT LUGHNASA"
A HIT! RUN EXTENDED THROUGH APRIL 6

 

Irish Memory Play Stars Susan Clark, Bonnie Franklin and Stephanie Zimbalist, and Features Karyl Lynn Burns, Precious Chong, Joseph Fuqua, Michael O'Hagan and James O'Neil. Written by Brian Friel. Directed by Jenny Sullivan.
·Critics Rave: "Fluid Performances" (LA Times), "A Stellar Cast" (Ventura County Star), "Transcendent" (Santa Barbara News Press), "Splendid" (Santa Barbara Independent), "Beautifully Acted" (Ventura Reporter)

(Ventura, California, March 13, 2003) - "Heaven Sent" is the headline in the Ventura Reporter's review of Rubicon Theatre Company's current production of "Dancing at Lughnasa." Brian Friel's award-winning memory play has captured the hearts of audiences and press alike, and Rubicon's production has been extended one week, now running through Sunday, April 6, 2003.

"Dancing at Lughnasa" reveals the repressed longings of a poor Catholic farm family in Ireland, circa 1936. It won "Best Play" Olivier® and Tony® awards. A star-studded Rubicon cast includes Emmy® winner Susan Clark as eldest sister Kate; Ventura resident and Tony®-Award winning actress Bonnie Franklin in her Rubicon debut as Maggie; Stephanie Zimbalist is the dutiful Aggie; Rubicon Founder Karyl Lynn Burns as simple-minded Rose; Precious Chong as the gentle dreamer Chris; Rubicon regular Joseph Fuqua is the charming Gerry; Dublin native Michael O'Hagan in his Rubicon debut as Uncle Jack; and Rubicon Founder/Artistic Director James O'Neil as narrator Michael, both as man and as a seven year old boy. "Lughnasa" is directed by Jenny Sullivan.

Performances are Wednesdays at 7 p.m. (a new time this season for weeknight early birds), Thursdays and Fridays at 8 pm, Saturdays at 2 and 8 pm and Sundays at 2 pm. Tickets prices for "Dancing at Lughnasa" range from $33 to $43, with discounts available for groups, seniors, students and military. To charge by phone, call (805) 667-2900; or visit the box office at 1006 E. Main Street (Laurel Street Entrance) in Downtown Ventura's Cultural District.

The Critics Rave
"Fluid performances A stellar cast evokes a bygone era in a foreign land with convincing naturalism Jenny Sullivan's staging strikes a tone of hope amid adversity, with various manifestations of dancing providing the wellspring of rejuvenation Bonnie Franklin, in a particularly effective turn, provides the emotional heart of the clan The production hits its stride with a well-choreographed outburst of spontaneous pagan revelry, and never looks back" - LA Times, "Strong Performances Drive The Rubicon's Delicate Dance of Hope and Despair"

"Transcendent... Sensitively directed by Jenny Sullivan, and beautifully performed by a fine ensemble of eight actors, it effectively transports the audience to another time and place, while simultaneously teaching us something about ourselves. The design elements, particularly Tom Giamario's evocative set, are all superb, and each of the actors creates a compelling, fully lived-in character Bonnie Franklin is superb as Maggie And how good it is to see Ms. Burns, the company's executive director, back on stage again. Rose is simple-minded, but Ms. Burns avoids the clichés of playing such a character. -- Santa Barbara News Press, "Sisters Doin' It for Themselves"

"The cast is sterling throughout Jenny Sullivan directs the play, drawing strong performances from a strong cast. O'Neil is intensely moving Susan Clark's Kate is artfully soft at the edges of a rigid personality Precious Chong is luminous and touching Fuqua is marvelous as the smooth but slippery Gerry Karyl Lynn Burns transforms herself into the limited Rose Bonnie Franklin is the spunky Maggie (and) plays the role throughout with winning gusto. Stephanie Zimbalist gives the relatively low-key role of Agnes a few rays of sunshine An impressive Rubicon debut is made by veteran Irish actor Michael O'Hagan as Uncle Jack tour de force performance." -Ventura County Star, "Dancing with Unfettered Abandon"

"Splendid production RTC's evocative presentation mixes pride with pain, loss and longing, music and dance, with equal parts Catholicism, paganism and mysticism. (A) gossamer-veiled creation (Director Jenny) Sullivan has assembled a first-rate quintet of actors (Leading the cast are) three fine stage actresses known primarily for their small-screen efforts (Zimbalist, Franklin and Clark). Remarkable performances by Precious Chong and Karyl Lynn Burns are startlingly discerning Complementing the exceptional work by the women are (O'Hagan, O'Neil, and Fuqua) -- Santa Barbara Independent, "Two-Steps at a Time"

"The very good current entry from Rubicon a beautifully acted production Jenny Sullivan has conceived a lovely set of experiences (and) Tom Giamario designed her excellent set the slumping rockery along stage right is a wondrous embodiment of the sisters' austerity. A spot-on James O'Neil is Michael A wonderful Karyl Lynn Burns is Rose. - Ventura Reporter, "Heaven Sent"

Next At The Rubicon
"A Streetcar Named Desire" is the story of the fragile Blanche, a fading Southern beauty who seeks refuge from the harsh world and her crude and powerful brother-in-law in her own illusions and "the kindness of strangers." Linda Purl stars as Blanche. Rubicon's Artistic Director James O'Neil directs. Previews: April 24 & 25; Runs: April 26 - May 25, 2003.

Rubicon Theatre Company is Ventura's non-profit professional theatre company. Founded in 1998 by James O'Neil and Karyl Lynn Burns, the mission of the company is to present a diverse season of classic and contemporary comedies, dramas and musicals for the entertainment and enrichment of residents of, and visitors to, the region. Rubicon Theatre Company performs in the intimate 200-seat Laurel, a renovated church originally built in the 1920s. Rubicon was declared the "anchor" of Ventura's Downtown Cultural District by City Council proclamation.

Box Office: (805) 667-2900 or www.rubicontheatre.com

A Season Named Desire

Visit Rubicon's website: http://www.rubicontheatre.org/

(805) 667-2900 for information.

 


 

OLD WICKED SONGS

                                                   Gould left, and Fuqua
        Photos Courtesy of The Rubicon Theatre Company    

Harold Gould and 
Joseph Fuqua 
in "Old Wicked Songs."
Photo:  TIMOTHY SWOPE

                             
A brief synopsis, as listed on the Rubicon Theatre Website:

April 13 – May 19, 2002

"A Pulitzer Prize finalist, this dynamic play follows a fierce clash of wills between a brash, brilliant young American concert pianist and an Austrian music teacher with a mysterious past. This masterpiece is set in 1986 during the controversial election of Kurt Waldheim. The shadow of World War II looms over these two men from different cultures, who greet each other with initial suspicion. Through the exploration of Schumann’s song-cycle “Dichterliebe,” the professor tries to reinvigorate the passion and joy his pupil once had for music, in the process confronting his own devastating past. Broadway, film and television actors Harold Gould and Joseph Fuqua star. Jenny Sullivan (The Little Foxes/The Rainmaker), directs.
Old Wicked Songs is presented in association with the Ventura Chamber Music Festival."

Here's the latest listing on this show - from the 4/8/02 LATimes CalendarLive:

http://www.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-Search-X!EventDetail-44195,00.html

Old Wicked Songs

Rubicon Theatre Company at the Laurel  
1006 E. Main St., Ventura

Harold Gould and Joseph Fuqua star in Jon Marans' drama about a clash of wills between an Austrian music teacher with a mysterious past, and a brilliant young American concert pianist.

Apr. 13 - May 19
Sundays, 2 p.m.
Wednesdays, 8 p.m.
Thursdays, 8 p.m.
Fridays, 8 p.m.
Saturdays, 2 p.m., 8 p.m.

Price: $28-$33; opening night, $150.
Tickets: Box office: 805-667-2900
.


UPDATE - 4/8/02 -

I received an e-mail from Diana Smith (DianaSmithRTC@aol.com), at Rubicon, which contained the following mentions of Joseph and OWS: 

Labas*, Cindi!  (*NOTE: "Labas" means hello in Lithuanian)

Thank you so much for writing! It is great to hear from you. 

"Old Wicked Songs" is starting this weekend. I have read the play and I know it is a wonderful piece of literature. I have been dying to see it since last spring when I read the script.

Joseph is back in town and as sweet as always - gave me a big kiss when we met last week :-) I also met Harold Gould - very briefly, very accidentally. He came looking for a microwave into our office. I think he is a total charmer! The stage set looks beautiful, but I have not seen rehearsals. Joseph told me in passing that they were going kind of slow last week. I am sure, though, that the show will be fascinating!

Love,
Diana


UPDATE - 4/11/02 -

Here's a link to the 4/11/02 LA Times article entitled: "The Musical Moods of Robben Ford":

http://www.latimes.com/editions/ventura/la-000025749apr11.story

Convergence: Classical music and theater converge in the next production of the Rubicon Theater's season, "Old Wicked Songs," which is being presented in association with the Ventura Chamber Music Festival, May 2-12.**

(**NOTE:  I have a message into Karyl Lynn Burns at RTC to let me know the exact official dates, as they are 
                  different on the RTC Website). 

A Pulitzer Prize finalist written by Jon Marans, directed here by frequent Rubicon artist Jenny Sullivan, the play is a two-character tête-à-tête starring Harold Gould and Joseph Fuqua, who portray an imperious Austrian music teacher and his young American pianist protégé, respectively. Between them, skeletons are coaxed from closets and tensions flare up, all to the tune of Robert Schumann's song cycle "Dichterliebe."

* "Old Wicked Songs," at Rubicon Theatre Co., 1006 E. Main St., Suite 300, Ventura. Wednesdays to Saturdays, 8 p.m.; matinees Saturdays and Sundays, 2 p.m. $21 to $38. Saturday to May 19. (805) 667-2900.

UPDATE - 4/14/02 -

Here's a link to the 4/13/02 Inside VC article entitled: "Something 'Wicked' this way comes":


http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_1082181,00.html

"... I started to wonder what I had signed on for," said Gould, famed for his "nose touch" in "The Sting" and playing Valerie Harper's father on "Rhoda."

But it's been worth it because "Old Wicked Songs" is a play he's long wanted to do. The work is set in Vienna in 1986. In it Gould plays an eccentric music professor who's suddenly saddled with a new student, played by Joseph Fuqua. The brash young man is an American piano prodigy who's lost his passion for music; Gould's job is to help him get it back.

The professor's cure-all is an unusual one: He decides to teach the pianist how to sing Schumann's song-cycle "Dichterliebe." Fuqua greets the idea with disdain, setting off a fierce battle of wills. Slowly, this song cycle takes on a life of its own in the play, sparking conversations that peel away the characters' defenses and ultimately reveal their secrets. Sadness and joy, they learn, heighten one another.

"I liked the involvement of the music, because it became a kind of humanizing factor," Gould said.

Fuqua echoed his sentiments. "How the show weaves the Schumann piece into the story and how it echoes the emotional lives of the characters is just beautiful," he said."


OLD WICKED SONGS

Jon Marans' two-character drama, presented by Rubicon Theatre 8 p.m. Wednesdays through Fridays, 2 and 8 p.m. Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays through May 19 at The Laurel, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura. Preview 8 p.m. tonight ($23), gala opening at 8 p.m. Saturday ($150). Regular tickets $28-$33. Call 805-667-2900.

 

Here's the listing in the 4/12/02 InsideVC.com "This Week Calendar Listings":

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/events/article/0,1375,VCS_158_1082171,00.html

THEATER

"Old Wicked Songs": 8 p.m. Wednesdays through Fridays, 2 and 8 p.m. Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays through May 19 at The Laurel, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura. Rubicon Theatre/Santa Fe Stages production starring Harold Gould ("The Sting," television's "Rhoda") and Joseph Fuqua in a two-character drama that weaves together words and music and joy and sadness. Fuqua plays a brash young American concert pianist sent to study with Gould, an Austrian music teacher. Their wills clash, but in the end they ultimately learn from one another. Tickets for Saturday's opening night performance are $150 and include a post-show party with the cast at Landmark 78 Restaurant. Regular tickets $28-$33; Friday night preview $23. 667-2900.

Here's the link to the 4/16/02 LATimes Review, entitled:  "Music Taps an Emotional Wellspring":  

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/printedition/calendar/la-000027019apr16.story

"...Harold Gould takes masterful command of the stage as professor Mashkan, the Austrian music teacher whose mercurial mood swings and mysterious past pose a constant challenge to Stephen (Joseph Fuqua), a visiting young American pianist.

Pinpoint timing and convincing naturalism in the exchanges between the performers nails the underlying desperation in both characters. Stephen, a child prodigy, is on the verge of abandoning his career after recognizing himself as nothing more than an accomplished mimic--coasting on technique without passion. Plunged into the ornate, disquietingly erotic Viennese decor of Mashkan's studio (a lushly rendered set by Thomas A. Giamario), Stephen is so dissociated he needs to wear a tie to remind himself he's alive.

Sugarcoating his penetrating insights into Stephen's emotional blockage, Gould's Mashkan pries the pupil from sterile, uptight intellectualism through a mandatory tour of composer Robert Schumann's "Dichterliebe"--a work Stephen dismisses at first as indulgent romanticism. Forced to abandon his keyboard and assume the singing role, Fuqua's Stephen flounders hilariously, bereft of familiar moorings as he tries to navigate the tone poem's strange emotional currents.

As Fuqua's singing gains in assurance, so does his character's ability to lead a life of authentic feeling--a bit of stage alchemy whose ultimate measure of success is whether it engulfs the audience as well. And thanks to this expertly crafted, schmaltz-free production, it does."


Here's a link to the 4/19/02 InsideVC.com/Ventura County Star review entitled: "Learning how to feel":

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_1096044,00.html

"Two strong actors, Harold Gould as Mashkan and Joseph Fuqua as Stephen, keep the play crackling through what is essentially a long conversation spliced with snippets of song.

Gould brings to the task all the guile, wit and depth evident in his extensive career on Broadway, in Shakespeare festivals, in films like "The Sting," "Patch Adams" and "Stuart Little," and in TV roles including continuing appearances on "Rhoda" and "The Golden Girls." Fuqua's theatrical and TV background is also extensive, but most Rubicon audiences will remember him most for his supremely comic performances at The Laurel in "The Rainmaker" and "The Little Foxes," as well as prominent roles in many of the troupe's dramas.

As the brash Stephen, confused at first but a fighter throughout, Fuqua makes an ideal foil for Gould's more circuitous professor. Both sing about as well as most classical pianists and manage to seem to be playing the piano in a clever deception that melds recorded music perfectly into the scenes."

Here's a link to the 5/10/02 BackStage West Review:

http://www.backstage.com/backstage/showguide/review_display.jsp?vnu_content_id=1480915

"...Fuqua's acting is deceptively simple, at first take. But as the play crescendos toward its climax and fall, so does Fuqua's portrayal of an artist struggling with the realization that technical perfection does not equate with soul-moving artistry, that art and life require more than recognition and repetition."


Here's a link to the 4/17/02 Santa Barbara News-Press Review entitled" 'Old Wicked Songs' and tender delights":

http://inferno.newspress.com/2002/04/17/041702wicked.htm?PNREF=VRVA39250200&e=cverbelun@core.com&c=VlJWQTM5MjUwMjAw

"...Mr. Fuqua does equally strong work. When we first meet Hoffman, he is clearly uncomfortable in his body. As the play progresses, he transforms, but not in an obvious way. At the end, this young man is still full of angst and anxiety, but he somehow owns it more.."


Here's a link to the 5/2/02 LATimes article entitled:  "VENTURA COUNTY CULTURE - A Music Festival on the Rise"

http://www.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-Search-X!ArticleDetail-57731,00.html 

"...Of course, what also counts is the bold chemistry of its players: Gould is a commanding presence, and Fuqua is the flexible foil."

UPDATE 5/12/02:

I received this e-mail from Karyl Lynn Burns at RTC today:

PRESS RELEASE

For Press Information: Julia McHugh (805) 569-8804 or juliapr@west.net

Helen Messina (805) 667-2912

Tickets: (805) 667-2900

For Immediate Release

ATTN: Feature/Entertainment/Theatre/Calendar

FINAL WEEK FOR "THOUGHT-PROVOKING" "SUPERB" OLD WICKED SONGS AT RUBICON

THEATRE COMPANY THROUGH MAY 19

· Critics Rave: "MOVING…" "TIMELY…"" TENDER DELIGHTS"

· Two-Character Drama Stars HAROLD GOULD and JOSEPH FUQUA

· Directed by JENNY SULLIVAN, Written by JON MARANS

· Presented in Association with VENTURA CHAMBER MUSIC FESTIVAL

Ventura, CA, March 29, 2002 - The Los Angeles Times calls it "a timely revival… hilarious… lushly rendered … expertly crafted." "Two strong actors, Harold Gould and Joseph Fuqua keep the play crackling…thought-provoking and engaging," raves the Ventura County Star. Backstage West dubbed the show "pitch perfect, a Critic's Pick," and the Santa Barbara News Press described the show as "superb." Old Wicked Songs, a two-person drama nominated for a Pulitzer Prize, continues at the Rubicon Theatre Company for 6 final performances through May 19.

Words and music, joy and sadness weave a compelling melody in Old Wicked Songs. This dynamic drama by Jon Marans follows a fierce clash of wills between a brash, brilliant young American concert pianist and an Austrian music teacher with a mysterious past. Rubicon Theatre Company's production stars Broadway, film and television actors Harold Gould and Joseph Fuqua, and is directed by veteran Jenny Sullivan (The Little Foxes, The Rainmaker).

Schumann's haunting song cycle "Dichterliebe" is integral to the story of Old Wicked Songs, and Rubicon's production of Old Wicked Songs is presented as part of the annual Ventura Chamber Music Festival which opens May 2.

Tickets for Old Wicked Songs range from $28 to $38 and are available on-line at www.rubiconthreatre.com, by phone at (805) 667-2900 or in person at the box office, 1006 E. Main Street (Laurel Street Entrance), Ventura, CA 93001.

More Critical Acclaim for Old Wicked Songs

"Jenny Sullivan's eloquent staging… proves a particularly timely revival…Veteran actor Harold Gould takes masterful command… Pinpoint timing and convincing naturalism… The integration of Schumann's song cycle into the evolving action is one of the production's strengths… Expertly crafted, schmaltz-free production…" - Los Angeles Times

"Gould brings all the guile, wit and depth evident in his extensive career on Broadway, in Shakespeare festivals, in films like "The Sting," "Patch Adams"… and continuing appearances on "Rhoda" and The Golden Girls… Rubicon audiences will remember (Fuqua) most for his supremely comic performances in "The Rainmaker" and "The Little Foxes, as well as prominent roles in may of the troupe's dramas… Fuqua makes an idea foil for Gould's more circuitous professor…" - Ventura County Star

"Beautifully dramatized… in the hands of director Jenny Sullivan, it's an evening of tender delights. A lovely play… superb!" Santa Barbara News-Press

"The set and lighting are masterfully metaphorical of the characters and their story. Gould is absolutely marvelous." - Ventura County Reporter

"CRITIC'S PICK. Pitch-perfect in both direction and acting. Gould presents a musical life lesson in acting that is nothing short of flawless. Dana Kilgore's lighting feels like a choreography of the emotions played out on stage. Thomas S. Giamario's scenic design transports…Vega's costuming reveals Hoffman's growing acceptance of heart, heritage and self. - BackStage West


Calendar Editors, please note: FINAL WEEK

Rubicon Theatre Company presents Old Wicked Songs by Jon Marans

A Pulitzer-Prize finalist, this dynamic play follows a fierce clash of wills between a brash, brilliant young American concert pianist and an Austrian music teacher with a mysterious past. Starring Broadway, television and film star Harold Gould and Rubicon veteran Joseph Fuqua, directed by Jenny Sullivan

Saturday & Sunday Matinees at 2 p.m., through May 19

Wednesday through Saturday Evenings at 8 p.m., through May 18

Tickets: $28-$38; discounts for groups, seniors, students and military

Rubicon Theatre Company at the Laurel, 1006 E. Main Street, Ventura

Box Office: (805) 667-2900 or www.rubicontheatre.com/.


UPDATE 5/23/02 & 5/28/02:

The LATimes today listed OWS in it's Summer Theatre Calendar as follows:

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/printedition/calendar/la-000036252may23.story?null


"31-Jun. 1: "Old Wicked Songs." Harold Gould and Joseph Fuqua star in Jon Marans' drama about an Austrian music teacher and a young American concert pianist. Norris Theatre."

The LATimes CalendarLive for 5/28/02 reprinted Philip Brandes' review and info on the Norris Theatre locale:

http://www.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-Search-X!EventDetail-46041,00.html

Norris Theatre  
27570 Crossfield Drive, Rolling Hills Estates

NORRIS THEATRE:
27570 Crossfield Drive 
Rolling Hills Estates CA 90274
310-544-0403



May 31: 8 p.m.
Jun. 1: 8 p.m.

Price: $30
Tickets: Box office: 310-544-0403.



FLASH!!!!!!!!!

"Old Wicked Songs" to move to Santa Fe Stages in New Mexico!!!

The 4/18/02 Ventura Country Star printed this release:

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_1096159,00.html

"Rubicon Theatre Company’s staging of Jon Marans’ drama about a young American concert pianist and an Austrian music teacher with a mysterious past, through May 19 at The Laurel, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura, in association with Santa Fe Stages in New Mexico, where the play will move after its Ventura run. Performances 8 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays, 2 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Tickets are $23-$38, depending on day and time of performance. 667-2900."

On May 30th, Santa Fe Stages issued the following Press Release:


RELEASE DATE: May 30th, 2002

Contact: Alexis Sabin
asabin@santafestages.org

SANTA FE STAGES PRESENTS OLD WICKED SONGS STARRING HAROLD GOULD AND JOSEPH FUQUA

(Santa Fe, NM)… Santa Fe Stages, in association with the Rubicon Theatre Company in California, presents Old Wicked Songs, starring stage, film and television veteran Harold Gould and Joseph Fuqua. The play was written by Jon Marans and was a 1996 Pulitzer Finalist for Drama. Old Wicked Songs is directed by Jenny Sullivan. Performed in the intimate 197-seat Firestone Plaza theater, Old Wicked Songs runs from June 21 through July 14.

Old Wicked Songs, produced by Santa Fe Stages in association with the Rubicon Theatre Company in Ventura, California, premiered on April 13, 2002 at the Rubicon to rave reviews. This is the first of several original productions that Santa Fe Stages intends to produce in future seasons with other regional theaters.

Moving! writes the Los Angeles Times, Harold Gould takes masterful command of the stage. In Old Wicked Songs Gould plays an Austrian voice teacher with a mysterious past who changes the life of a disenchanted young American concert pianist in search of redirection, all set in Vienna during the controversial election of Kurt Waldheim in 1986. Through the exploration of Schumann's haunting song cycle Dichterliebe, this passionate play, woven with joy and sadness, celebrates the power of music to free the human spirit.

Harold Gould has appeared on the Broadway stage where he won recognition for several roles including Neil Simons Fools and Jules Feiffer's Grown Ups, among others, and in Los Angeles where he performed his one man show Freud and won a Los Angeles Critics Award for his role as Ezra Pound in Incommunicado. Gould's impressive list of films includes The Sting, Love and Death, Patch Adams, and Stuart Little, and he has received five Emmy nominations for his extensive television work which include multiple appearances on Rhoda, The Golden Girls and co-starring with Katherine Hepburn in Mrs. Delafield Wants to Marry.

Joseph Fuqua, a graduate of Yale School of Drama, has appeared in several Rubicon Theatre productions; off and on Broadway including roles in Brighton Beach Memoirs and 100 in the Shade. He has guest starred on television in The X-Files, The Profiler, The Pretender, Star Trek :Deep Space Nine, and Becker, and he has also appeared in several feature films.

Director Jenny Sullivan has worked as a director, writer, producer and actress. At the Rubicon Theatre Company her directing credits include The Little Foxes, The Rainmaker with Stephanie Zimbalist, and Love Letters with Felicia Farr and the late Jack Lemmon. Ms. Sullivan premiered her play J for J starring John Ritter at Santa Fe Stages in 2000.

Jon Marans has written comedy for television, and was a script editor for Michael Douglas production company at Columbia Pictures. In New York his work has included books and lyrics for two musicals commissioned by The New York Shakespeare Festival.

Box Office Information: Tickets for Old Wicked Songs range from $25-$35, depending on performance day: Monday, Wednesday, Thursdays are $25; Sundays are $30; Fridays and Saturdays are $35. Seniors 60+ & Active Military, $2 off full-price ticket; children ages 3-18 are half-price; and student rush tickets are half-price one hour prior to curtain, with valid I.D. Call the Santa Fe Stages box office at (505)982-6683, or the Lensic box office at (505)988-1234. Santa Fe Stages Box Office is located at 100 N. Guadalupe, at West Water Street. Box Office hours are Mon Sat, 9AM to 6PM and one hour prior to performance. Tickets can be ordered off the Stages website: www.santafestages.org

Santa Fe Stages, founded in 1995, is committed to bringing world-class theater to New Mexico audiences. Currently housed in the Firestone Plaza in Santa Fe, New Mexico, Stages is one of eight resident performing arts groups at the new Lensic Performing Arts Center. The company is the only Equity theater company in New Mexico operating under a LORT agreement, and is the primary presenter in Santa Fe of modern dance, and presents a wide variety of cutting-edge theater, solo performance art, cabaret, and Latin music. Its season runs from June to September. For more information the public can call (505)982-6683 or visit the website at www.santafestages.org.


Here is the website link and the info on Santa Fe Stages:

http://www.santafestages.org/frameset.shtml

OWS Performance Dates:  June 21 - July 14, 2002

Contact Info:

Santa Fe Stages
100 North Guadalupe Street
Santa Fe, NM 87501

Box Office: 505.982.6683
Administrative Offices: 505.982.6680
Fax: 505.982.6682
Pre Season: Mon-Fri 10am-4pm
Season: May 20 - Sept 1
Mon-Sat 9am-6pm
Performances: The box office will always be open one hour prior to curtain through first intermission
Firestone Plaza Pricing (Full Price) (This is the theatre OWS is in)
Day of the Week Fri, Sat Sun Mon, Wed, Thu
Old Wicked Songs $35 $30 $25

FIRESTONE PLAZA
Intimate 197-seat theater with comfortable new seats
100 North Guadalupe Street (at the corner of Water
and Guadalupe) Free parking available at an adjacent
lot, east of the building, as well as the lot across
from the building entrance on Water St.


The Santa Fe Reporter (www.SFReporter.com/) had this to say about OWS in their 6/26-7/2, 2002 issue (not available online):

OLD WICKED MUSIC TEACHERS

At first glance, Old Wicked Songs is an uplifting story about a good-humored music teacher who liberates an uptight, young pianist. When introduced to the audience, Josef Mashkan is an elderly Austrian vocal coach who is passionate about beauty. At the other end of the spectrum is Stephen Hoffman, an arrogant and bombastic piano prodigy who has already lost his enthusiasm for playing. When Stephen is coerced into taking a singing class with Mashkan, the differences between his and Mashkan's approaches to music become apparent through lessons on Schumann's song cycle, Dichterliebe. Stephen places technical precision before artistic interpretation and Mashkan treats a piano like a gentle lover. On the surface, it looks like a simple situation. But the dialogue between student and teacher, the stripping of layers, proves that first impressions can be faulty and reveals the rich textures of Jon Marans' script.

Mashkan, in pressing his student to recognize the contrasting emotions of sorrow and joy, love and hate in Dichterliebe, discloses his own conflicting feelings. As the professor, Harold Gould shines in Mashkan's elation over Austria's beauty and wallows in his shame over the toll World War II took on the country, a performance reinforced by the dark hues of Thomas S. Giamario's set. As Stephen, Joseph Fuqua gives a natural and generous performance as he uncovers the reason behind Mashkan's apparent anti-Semitism and becomes less alienated.

OLD WICKED SONGS

8PM Wednesday-Saturday
3PM Sunday
June 26-30
Through July 14

$25-$35
Half-price children and student rush tickets
$2.00 off seniors and active military

Santa Fe Stages at Firestone Plaza
100 N. Guadalupe St.
982-6683



UPDATE: 6/22/02:

Received this e-mail from Karyl Lynn Burns today when I asked her how tonight's OWS opening in Santa Fe went:

"It went great! We're so excited to have a show go out into the world. Must be like kids going to college.

I'm just picking up e-mail at the public library in Santa Fe and it closes here in a few minutes, but wanted to send a thank you for your continued interest and care."

/klb

As noted in the link to the Ventura County, CA Community Theatre Site article entitled: "Ventura's Rubicon Theatre Company Received Two Theatre LA "Ovation" Nominations" (link below): RTC received a Santa Barbara Indie Award for "OWS", which went to Joseph for his performance in this incredible production.  (See also the full article on my link to RTC):

http://www.barkerductions.com/theaters/rubicon/ovation.html  

 


 

BARDWALK 

J
oseph participated in Rubicon Theatre Company's"Bardwalk" on April 20th.  The event was  a smashing success.  Per Diana Smith (ddsmith9@yahoo.com) at RTC:

"BardWalk turned out great, although we all were exhausted. We had about 500 people attending the event. Joseph of course was there :-) Together with Harold (i.e.: Harold Gould and Joseph are in "Old Wicked Songs" through 5/19/02.  See #8 in this section, and Joseph's bio page). I think people had a really good time, and the kids got lovely t-shirts and a very nice volume of The Complete Works of Shakespeare. I think it was a very very nice present to them."

What is "BardWalk"?  Well, as defined on the website:

"BardWalk is a 10K Walkathon and Rockin' Renaissance celebration. Participants walk, run, rollerblade, bike or .... along the boardwalk at San Buenaventura State Beach to raise funds for Shakespeare in the Schools and other Education Outreach programs provided by Rubicon Theatre, our region's non-profit professional theatre company. The event begins with aerobic warm-ups and inspiration, and ends with food, drink, awards, music and merriment and more!"

Check out the website (URL posted below).  I highly recommend that if Bardwalk becomes an annual happening, any of you who can be there consider participating in this event to help a really good cause!

http://www.bardwalk.com/index.htm

Check out these links for more info on "Bardwalk", and details on the days' events, winners, and successes:

"BardWalk to boost Shakespearean Shows": 
http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/county_news/article/0,1375,VCS_226_1097495,00.html

"BardWalk celebrates Shakespeare":
http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/events/article/0,1375,VCS_158_1096049,00.html

"BardWalk Time Slots":
http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/county_news/article/0,1375,VCS_226_1097496,00.html

"Camarillan wins BardWalk Contest":
http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/ox/article/0,1375,VCS_238_1113393,00.html

"Camarillo girl wins BardWalk Contest":
http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/ve/article/0,1375,VCS_251_1113394,00.html
NOTE:  Both this article and the one directly above this one include information about Rubicon's "Mother's Day Candlelight Walk For Peace", which were held on May 12th at 7PM, culminating in an event promoting peace at Laurel and Santa Clara streets in downtown Ventura.

 


 

J FOR J

 


Photo courtesy of Rod Latham and The Rubicon Theatre Co.

The cast of J for J
(left to right):

John Ritter as John Sullivan
Jeff Kober as Barry Sullivan
Jenny Sullivan as Jenny Sullivan (herself)

Here is a brief synopsis, as it was listed on the Rubicon Theatre Website:

"Barry Sullivan was a Broadway and Hollywood star from the Golden Age. He was also a father who longed for a perfect son. In this exquisitely crafted play, he admonishes his children, Brother Johnny and Sister Jenny, to take care of each other – “J for J.” But over time, it becomes clear that Brother Johnny is slow – incapable of taking care of himself or anyone else. Jenny Sullivan has created a stunning piece of theatre from the journal she discovered after her father’s death. In it, she explores the ache and anger of “not being enough”; the awful, awesome need to be responsible for another person’s physical and emotional well-being; and the strange, sweet surprise of being loved in return. Directed by Joseph Fuqua."

Some further information has been printed about Joseph's project:  "J for J":

A quick link which appeared in the 10/12/01 edition of InsideVC, under : "TGIF On Stage":

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_844654,00.html

Rubicon Theatre Company opens its fourth season with the world premiere of Jenny Sullivan's "J for J," a play based on letters written by her father, actor Barry Sullivan, and discovered after his death. Ex-"Three's Company" star John Ritter, along with Jeff Kober and Sullivan herself, will star in the drama, which opens Wednesday and runs through Nov. 4 at the Laurel Theatre, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura. Performances 8 p.m. Wednesdays to Saturdays, 7 p.m. Sundays and 2 p.m. Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. Tickets are $23 for previews and matinees, $28 Wednesday and Thursday evenings, $33 Fridays and $38 Saturday evenings, with discounts available for seniors. Opening night gala on Oct. 20 is $130. Call 667-2900 or visit the Web site at www.rubicontheatre.org.  (BTW:   The show is 95 minutes long - and is performed without an intermission.)


An info listing in the 10/13/01 LA Times Calendarlive:

http://www.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-Search-X!EventDetail-31911,00.html

J for J

Rubicon Theatre Company at the Laurel  
1006 E. Main St., Ventura
805-667-2900

John Ritter heads the cast in the world premiere of Jenny Sullivan's journey of remembrance, reconciliation and renewal, based on the journal of her father, the late actor Barry Sullivan. Mature audiences.

Oct. 20 - Nov. 4
Sundays, 2 p.m., 7 p.m.
Wednesdays, 2 p.m., 8 p.m.
Thursdays, 8 p.m.
Fridays, 8 p.m.
Saturdays, 2 p.m., 8 p.m.

Price: $23-$38; opening gala benefit, $150
Tickets: Box office: 805-667-2900.

An article/interview with John Ritter in the 9/14/01 edition of InsideVC, entitled:  "All For One, and One For All":

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_824259,00.html


Also in the 9/14/01 edition of InsideVC, this article/info listing entitled: "To attend "J for J"":

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_824260,00.html


A new article in the 10/19/01 issue of Inside VC, entitled: "Changes in Direction" talks with the cast of "J for J" and explains the change in Joseph's status as director of the show:

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_851946,00.html 

"...Directorial responsibilities instead went to fellow Rubicon veteran Joseph Fuqua, who was anxious to show what he could do on the other side of the stage curtain after playing a public defender in "Murder in the First," a would-be golf pro in "The Boys Next Door" and a simple-minded farmer in "The Rainmaker."

Then, just weeks into rehearsals and discussions about how best to integrate family photographs and Barry Sullivan's film clips into the live theater performance, Fuqua got some very good news: He'd been cast opposite Robert Duvall in "Gods & Generals," a prequel to the 1993 movie "Gettysburg."

Trouble was, filming was to begin almost immediately. On the East Coast.

"That was the only thing that would have tempted me away," Fuqua says during a phone call from his family home in Cornwall-on-Hudson, N.Y., where he is on a break from reprising his "Gettysburg" role as Maj. Gen. J.E.B. Stuart.

"Jenny has directed me in five plays; this was my chance to tell her what to do," he adds with a laugh. (Fuqua is instead listed as associate director of "J for J.")..."

"J for J"

John Ritter, Jeff Kober and Jenny Sullivan star in Rubicon Theatre Company's world premiere staging of Sullivan's play based on letters written by her father, actor Barry Sullivan. Involves some on-stage smoking. Performances 8 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays and 7 p.m. Sundays, with matinees at 2 p.m. Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays through Nov. 4 at the Laurel Theatre, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura. $21-$38. Star-studded gala opening performance, 7 p.m. Oct. 20, will be followed by a 40s theme party benefiting Therapeutic Living Centers for the Blind, $150 per person. 805-667-2900 or www.rubicontheatre.org.

 

"J for J": 8 p.m., Laurel Theatre, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura. Rubicon Theatre opens its fourth season with a "dramatic journey of remembrance, reconciliation and renewal" written by Jenny Sullivan and based on the journal she discovered after the death of her actor father, Barry Sullivan. "Three's Company" icon and Emmy-winning actor John Ritter stars, along with Jeff Kober ("China Beach") and Sullivan. Preview tonight at 8 p.m. Opens with a 1940s-style gala Saturday night at 7 p.m. Runs through Nov. 4 with performances at 2 and 8 p.m. Wednesdays, 8 p.m. Fridays, 2 and 8 p.m. Saturdays and 2 and 7 p.m. Sundays. Tickets are $23 for preview, $23-$38 for regular shows, $150 for the opening-night gala. 805-667-2900.


Another article in the 10/21/01 edition of the LA Times, entitled:  "Drawing On A Brother's Insight", features an interview with cast members John Ritter and Jenny Sullivan (who is also the playwright):

http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/printedition/calendar/la-000083756oct21.story



A listing in the 10/22/01 Calendarlive section of the LA Times, entitled simply: "J for J":

http://www.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-Search-X!EventDetail-31911,00.html

Tomorrow's (yes - 10/23 - let's hear it for online previews!) LA Times review entitled: 

A Sibling's Duty, a Small Miracle

http://www.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-Theater-X!ArticleDetail-45610,00.html


The 10/23 InsideVC review entitled:

'J for J' brings Sullivan family talents to light

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_856250,00.html

An interesting mention in an article entitled: "Using the theatre to survive", in the 10/28 issue of InsideVC:

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/opinion/article/0,1375,VCS_125_861376,00.html

"...Perhaps theater is one way to survive this period, to usher ourselves into a world of the arts where our spirits can be lifted, our souls renewed and our sense that what was once considered normal will some day return.

We tried last week, my wife and I attending a Wednesday night performance of "J for J" by the Rubicon Theater Company at the Laurel Theatre in downtown Ventura. (Conflict of interest admission: On a personal and professional basis, we are supporters of the Rubicon.)

The one-act play stars Jenny Sullivan, who also wrote it. She plays herself in the story of her family, including father-actor Barry Sullivan and her retarded brother, Johnny. The story of one long, sleepless night moves from joy to chance to fond remembrance. It is a family in turmoil, in denial, in crisis, in anger and finally in peace.

But this is not a theater review.

"J for J" is but one of dozens of fine choices in theater, music, dance, museums, poetry readings and films ("Corky Romano" and "13 Ghosts" notwithstanding). You should choose to attend one or two...."

UPDATE - 11/18/01-

I received an e-mail from Karyl Lynn Burns ( klburns1@aol.com) (Executive Director and Co-Artistic Director of RTC), in response to my question about Joseph's availability for "Old Wicked Songs" and his status change in "J for J".  Here's her exciting news:

Hi Cindi:


Oh yes, Joseph will be in "Old Wicked Songs." He wraps the film (Gods and Generals) December 20 and will be back the first week in January. He didn't get to direct "J for J" but did get to see it 3 or 4 times and will be directing a reading of it in New York. Then the show may go forward here in Los Angeles, too. We're really excited about it.

UPDATE - 2/27/02

I received the latest issue of "Crossings" from Karyl Lynn Burns (Executive Director and Co-Artistic Director of RTC), which includes a section she has titled:

"Jumping for Joy about J for J":

"Crossings"

News from Rubicon Theatre Company

(Edited E-Mail Version Vol. 4; 02/26/01)

 

"2. "J FOR J" JOURNEYS TO L.A. "J FOR J" MAKES ITS LOS ANGELES DEBUT ON ST. PATRICK'S DAY AT THE COURT IN LOS ANGELES, PRESENTED BY 11TH HOUR PRODUCTIONS IN ASSOCIATION WITH RUBICON THEATRE COMPANY.

 

We're "J for J" (jumpin' for joy!) about J FOR J, which recently had its world premiere at Rubicon Theatre Company in Ventura, opens with the original cast Jenny Sullivan, Jeff Kober and Emmy and Golden Globe Award-winning actor John Ritter on March 17th, St. Patrick's Day, in Los Angeles at the Court Theatre, 722 N. La Cienega.

 

J FOR J is a poetic and powerful story about a daughter's emotional journey after the death of her father. In this autobiographical drama, Jenny Sullivan discovers a journal that her father, Hollywood film and stage actor Barry Sullivan started when her brother Johnny was born. He continues the entries after Jenny's birth, ending always with the words, "Remember Johnny, you must take care of your sister Jenny - it's J for J." But over time, it becomes clear that Brother Johnny is "slow", incapable of taking care of himself or anyone else. In this literate and lovingly conceived story, Sullivan explores the ache and anger of "not being enough"; the awesome, awful responsibility of being responsible for someone else's brother's physical and emotional well-being; and the strange, sweet surprise of being loved at an unexpected moment.

 

J FOR J is presented by 11th Hour Productions in association with Rubicon. The production manager is Kathleen Parsons. Set design is by Hugh Landwehr; lights by Dana Kilgore; sound by Catasonic. Joseph Fuqua directs. Many thanks to Kathi O'Donohue and Jon Lawrence Rivera for their exquisite work here during the initial run!

 

J FOR J has a limited run and begins previews March 14th at The Court Theatre, 722 N. La Cienega in Los Angeles (between Santa Monica and Melrose). The production generally runs Thursdays through Sundays through April 21. Call the box office at (805) 667-2900 for specific days, show times and prices.

 

3. Join us for a Rubicon fund-raising tour to see J FOR J in Los Angeles. If you are interested to see the re-writes and follow the progress of the show, we invite you to join us for the opening and St. Patrick's Day party on Sunday, March 17. Tickets are $150 and include round-trip transportation via motor coach from Rubicon (departing at 5:00 p.m. for a 7:00 p.m. show), a

gourmet box dinner, and the party afterwards hosted by John Bennett Perry and Matthew Perry. Don't miss it! -- the show, bagpipes, food and fun! Of your ticket price, $60 is a tax-deductible contribution to Rubicon."

 

INFO ON J FOR J'S LA RUN:

 

J FOR J: Following its premiere last year by Ventura's Rubicon Theatre Co., Jenny Sullivan's autobiographical play will star Sullivan, John Ritter and Jeff Kober in a production directed by Joseph Fuqua, through April 21 at The Court Theatre, 722 N. La Cienega, Los Angeles. $26-$75. 667-2900 or (866) J4J-TKTS.

 

As noted in the link to the Ventura County, CA Community Theatre Site article entitled: "Ventura's Rubicon Theatre Company Received Two Theatre LA "Ovation" Nominations" (link below): RTC received a Santa Barbara Indie Award, which went to John Ritter for his performance in this production.  (See also the full article under the link to RTC):

http://www.barkerductions.com/theaters/rubicon/ovation.html


UPDATE:  9/13/03:

With the sudden death of John Ritter on 9/11/03, of a torn aorta, the road for "J FOR J" has come to an end, at least for the moment. It has also forced a possible change in plans for RTC's 2005 season. Here is a link to the 9/13/03 Insidevc.com article on RTC and John, entitled: "Ritter more than just funny guy, friends say", which even mentions Joseph:

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/county_news/article/0,1375,VCS_226_2256779,00.html


Star file photo

Actor John Ritter, who died Thursday at age 54, appeared in the play "J for J" in 2001 at Ventura's Laurel Theatre. Ritter was best known for work in the sitcom "Three's Company." He was currently starring in the sitcom "8 Simple Rules ... For Dating My Teenage Daughter."


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Ritter more than just funny guy, friends say

Actor remembered as giving man who wanted to return to Ventura stage

By Lisa McKinnon, mckinnon@insidevc.com
September 13, 2003

Actor John Ritter, who died Thursday at age 54, had a winking sense of humor made famous by his portrayal of faux-gay horn-dog Jack Tripper on television's "Three's Company."

But he also was the sort of guy who would give you the purple designer suit coat off his back.

Karyl Lynn Burns, producing director and co-founder of the Rubicon Theatre Company in Ventura, saw the star do just that in March, when he and wife Amy Yasbeck were in town to see the troupe's production of "Dancing at Lughnasa." After the show, Ritter waited at the theater to meet up with longtime friend Jenny Sullivan, who directed the play, and with members of the cast, including Joseph Fuqua.

"Joseph said, 'Hey! Nice jacket!' and John took it off right there and gave it to him," Burns said Friday. "He wouldn't take it back."

It was not the first time Ritter shared his talents, sartorial or otherwise, on the Rubicon's behalf. Nor was it supposed to be his last.

According to Burns, Ritter had discussed starring in the Rubicon's proposed 2005 mounting of the dark comedy "Fuddy Meers" with his son Jason, 23, in the cast. But first, Ritter was thinking of giving a reading of the play later this year as a fund-raiser for the Rubicon, which is attempting to buy The Laurel theater. The former church in which the company presents its shows is on the market for $1.5 million.

Either way, "Fuddy Meers" was to have marked Ritter's return to the Ventura stage. In October 2001, he starred in Rubicon's world-premiere mounting of "J for J," Sullivan's autobiographical play based on letters written by her father, the film actor Barry Sullivan, to her older brother, John, before it was discovered the boy was not just "slow" but developmentally disabled.

In a 2001 interview with The Star, Ritter was open about his very personal reasons for doing the play. As the son of Western film star and musician Tex Ritter and the sibling of someone who has cerebral palsy, he said, "I identify with it. My father is famous, too. I have a brother who is handicapped. We are the younger sister and younger brother who are helping to take care of an older brother -- and in that way you take on the role of the older sibling, the protector."

Ritter's critically acclaimed portrayal of Sullivan's "brother Johnny" was very much at odds with his carefree public persona, a fact that only highlighted his talents as an actor, Burns said.

"I think most of the world knew him as an incredible comic actor; we got to see the deep rivers of his serious dramatic talent."

Ritter, praised by Burns and others as a man who made friends for life, so supported Sullivan's "J for J" that he appeared in a Los Angeles production of the play last year even as he began shooting his new ABC sitcom, "8 Simple Rules ... For Dating My Teenage Daughter."

Kaley Cuoco, a 17-year-old Thousand Oaks resident and Camarillo native, has starred with Ritter in "8 Simple Rules," playing Bridget, the older daughter of Ritter's character, Paul Hennessy.

Gary Cuoco, Kaley's father, said Friday that she was too upset to take any calls about Ritter.

"He was a very close friend. He cared very much about her, and the feeling was mutual. He was almost like a second father," Gary Cuoco said.

In an interview in May, Kaley Cuoco said everything about the TV show, including her friendship with Ritter, exceeded her expectations.

She said Ritter acted like a father to her even when the cameras weren't rolling.

Just like her real-life parents, Ritter would express concern about her clothes, telling her to wear a jacket if he didn't think her clothes were enough to cover her up.

One episode of "8 Simple Rules" last season spoofed "Three's Company," the 1977-84 ABC sitcom that made Ritter famous. Paul dreamed about the show and, in the dream, Ritter played Mr. Roper, the landlord. Cuoco played "Chrissy" Snow, Suzanne Somers' character.

In May, Cuoco said she felt like she was working every day with Jack Tripper. In that role and others, Ritter showed his knack for characterizations and physical comedy, including his wacky pratfalls.

Ritter's comedy wasn't limited to the physical. During his 2001 interview with The Star, Ritter told an impossible-to-verify tale about living in Ventura's Pierpont neighborhood in the late 1970s, when "Three's Company" was still in the midst of its original run on ABC.

Inspired by the show's theme song to "come and knock on our door," Ritter said, a member of the Hells Angels walked up to his house and did just that. When Ritter opened the door, he said, the visitor asked for Chrissy.

Rather than set the biker straight, Ritter did his part to further blur the line between fantasy and reality.

"I gave him Suzanne's address," Ritter said, "and then I got out of there."

Was he kidding? Was there an element of truth to the story? With Ritter, you never really knew for sure.

"He could spin a yarn beautifully," Burns said.

 

-- Staff writer Dave Mason contributed to this story.

 

 

FLASH!!!!!!!!!

The 4/29/01 LA Times reports in an article entitled: "New Name, New LineUp in Santa Barbara": http://www.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-Search-X!ArticleDetail-30873,00.html?search_area=Blended&channel=Search&search_text=%22Joseph+Fuqua%22
* *
CLOSER TO L.A.: Ventura's Rubicon Theatre Company has announced a 2001-02 season: Shaw's "The Devil's Disciple" (Nov. 17-Dec. 16), with Joe Spano as General Burgoyne; "Jacques Brel Is Alive and Well and Living in Paris" (Jan. 19-Feb. 17, 2002), with Amanda McBroom and George Ball; "Old Wicked Songs" (April 13-May 19, 2002), with Harold Gould and Joseph Fuqua; and "Sylvia" (July 13-Aug. 18, 2002).

Rubicon also has announced dates this fall for "J for J," a new play that was initially planned as part of the 2000-01 season but was held up by star John Ritter's stint on Broadway in "The Dinner Party." It's based on the late Hollywood actor Barry Sullivan's journal, focusing on the relationship between his daughter Jenny--now a prominent theater director, who adapted the piece--and his developmentally disabled son, John. Michael Kearns will direct, Oct. 20-Nov. 3.

 

 


 

THE RAINMAKER

 

http://www.reocities.com/mfteran/rainmaker.htm

The Rainmaker

The Cast

Stephanie Zimbalist .............. Lizzie

Carlos Sanz ................ Starbuck

James O'Neil .................. Noah

Joseph Fuqua ................... Jim

Top of the Page

Opening and Details

"The Rainmaker" opened Oct. 12, 2000 and runs through Nov. 5 at the Laurel Theatre, 1006 E. Main St. in Ventura. Preview performances are Oct. 12 and Friday at 8 p.m., with tickets costing $20, $17 for students and seniors. Tickets for Saturday's opening gala at 7 p.m. are $125, which includes a dinner party with the cast at a nearby restaurant. Regular performances begin Sunday afternoon and continue Wednesday through Saturday at 8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m. Tickets for those performances are $20 to $35, with senior, student and group discounts available. Tickets are available from the theater box office (call for hours) and by phone, 667-2900. Running time: 2 hours, 45 minutes.

Second Opening: From Aug. 9 to Sept. 9. Tickets for Saturday's opening night gala at 7 are $130, which includes a post-show reception with the cast at a nearby restaurant. Previews: today and Friday, 8 p.m.; $21, $23. Tickets for regular performances $23 to $38.

Top of the page

Review Nº 1

Thursday, October 12, 2000

Los Angeles Times

A Touch of Mysticism

Director tries new tack in casting lead for 'Rainmaker.'

By TODD EVERETT, Special to The Times

Jenny Sullivan wanted to interject a mystical element into the production of "The Rainmaker" that she's directing for the Rubicon Theatre Company. So she decided that Starbuck, the wanderer who promises to bring rain to a parched Southwestern town, should represent "indigenous people--native Americans--people who are really committed to the Earth and the environment."

Darren McGavin created the role on Broadway; Burt Lancaster played him in the 1956 film. But Sullivan cast Carlos Sanz, a Latino, in the role. Stephanie Zimbalist plays Lizzie, the local who is captured by Starbuck's magic, in the production, which opens for previews tonight.

"When I was [directing] 'The Little Foxes' for Rubicon in April," Sullivan said, "I was struck by the fact that so many Hispanic kids showed up at the student matinees. Many of them had never seen a play before, and they were just [struck by] live theater. They were a fantastic audience and talked very passionately and intelligently in the question-and-answer sessions we had after the performances.

"I was thinking about bringing those kids back, and their parents. Jim O'Neil, Rubicon's co-artistic director, and I were struck by the same idea in casting Starbuck. Nothing in the play indicated anything about him, except that he has this magical quality and charisma."

Now that they've rehearsed for some time, Sullivan notes that Sanz fits in well.

"I was thinking that we're really making a statement, but people watching the play for the first time are going to think that it was supposed to be cast this way," she said.

Already, the company has experienced what might be considered a touch of magic. Searching for props, Sullivan wanted Starbuck to bang on a Native American drum instead of the parade-style instrument called for in the script.
" I got a catalog from a group called All One Tribe and searched for a picture of something that looked appropriate," Sullivan said. "Only after I'd decided on one in particular did I read the description under the picture, that it's called the Rain-Bringer Drum.

"When the people at All One Tribe found out what we were doing, and that Rubicon is a nonprofit organization, they offered us a 50% discount, because they consider theater to be a healing art."

The director was raised in a theatrical household--her father was actor Barry Sullivan and her mother was an actress who retired from the stage after marrying. Jenny Sullivan has worked in regional theaters around the country.

She has known Rubicon's O'Neil and Karyl Lynn Burns for several years, dating to when all were working in Santa Barbara. Most of her directing experience, she said, has been with new works, most notably, Jane Anderson's "The Baby Dance," which she took from the Pasadena Playhouse to off-Broadway. Co-starring in "The Baby Dance" were Stephanie Zimbalist, "Little Foxes" star Linda Purl and John Bennett Perry, who also appears in "The Rainmaker."

She finds the opportunity to work with an established play refreshing, she said, explaining that "it isn't necessary to work with [rewriting and developing] the text all that much."

Still, her next project may be a play she is writing, based on the relationships among herself, her father and her mentally disabled brother. The play will almost certainly debut at Rubicon, Sullivan said, with John Ritter--an old friend--playing the brother.

"I can tell you this because John told me I can tell people," she reports with pride: "He says it's the best part he's been offered since 'Sling Blade.' "

Top of the Page

Review Nº 2

Tuesday, October 17, 2000

Los Angeles Times

The Silver Lining Holds Up in 'The Rainmaker' Revival

By PHILIP BRANDES, Special to The Times

The notion of dreams coming true might seem a preposterous conceit in a morecynical era, yet "The Rainmaker," N. Richard Nash's unabashedly optimistic 1953 teleplay-turned-Broadway-hit, still has the power to keep disbelief at bay in Jenny Sullivan's affectingly staged revival for Ventura's Rubicon Theatre.

Preceding "The Music Man" by three years, Nash's fable, about a traveling con man (Carlos Sanz) who lives only in his dreams and a lonely spinster (Stephanie Zimbalist) who lives entirely outside hers, shares some of the same fairy-tale appeal, sans trombones. In this case, trouble's capital T rhymes with D, which stands for "drought"--both meteorological and spiritual--as a family of Old West-style ranchers grapples with encroaching urbanization in the 1920s.

Director Sullivan and her first-rate cast add heightened gravitas with a tough-minded approach to the upheaval wrought by changing social values. In this regard, Zimbalist's bravura performance as Lizzie anchors the production with a letter-perfect portrait of a smart, independent-minded woman who can't live up to her community's traditional expectations. Angry at being shopped around like a farm animal to potential husbands by her father and brothers, Lizzie's self-destructive resistance is comic and poignant at the same time.

Lizzie's complexity deepens with the appearance of Sanz's Starbuck, the drifter who offers to bring rain--for a fee, of course. Relying less on charisma and more on brooding mystery, Sanz delves beneath the charlatan to reveal the wounded dreamer who is as out of place in the world as Lizzie herself.

Their beautifully played connection aches with a partiality that brings the fairy tale gracefully back to earth.

The supporting cast does a superb job in both defining its characters' strengths and limitations, and showing the healing wrought by Starbuck's influence. James O'Neil's Noah is the pragmatic elder brother enslaved to rationality, who finally realizes that in trying to keep his family from breaking its heart on what he considers foolishness, he has been demeaning and belittling them. Joseph Fuqua engenders cheers as his slow-speaking brother Jim, who sees more clearly with his heart than Noah sees with his head, but lacks the self-confidence to trust his own feelings.

Jeff Kober convincingly depicts the show's biggest stretch--the loner deputy who overcomes his own massive prejudices to buck the system and even his grizzled sheriff boss (Tony Perry). But the true catalyst for all these changes is not Starbuck, it's John Bennett Perry's sensitive portrayal as the rancher patriarch who seems to have lost his footing in the world with the loss of his wife, yet somehow recognizes that the obvious con man can supply the missing spark that will bring completeness to his struggling family.

Production values are excellent, from Pamela Shaw's sweat-stained costumes to Tom Giamario's elegant set, which squeezes three locales onto an intimate stage. After nearly half a century, "The Rainmaker" still makes a handsomely staged case for miracles.

Top of the Page

Review Nº 3

Thursday, August 9, 2001

Los Angeles Times

VENTURA COUNTY CULTURE

By JOSEF WOODARD, Special to The Times

... Let the Theater Begin: Rubicon Theater Company, the crown jewel of Ventura's theater scene, starts its new season with a welcome summer rerun. Starting this weekend, last fall's popular Rubicon production of N. Richard Nash's "The Rainmaker" will return to the Laurel for a run till Sept. 9.

Director Jenny Sullivan leads the original cast, including Carlos Sanz and Stephanie Zimbalist, familiar to television audiences through stints on "NYPD Blue" and "Remington Steele," respectively.

The play, which had a successful revival on Broadway in 1999, began its life on the small screen. Nash's work debuted in shorter form in 1953, for the Philco-Goodyear Television Theatre, but was fleshed out for its Broadway incarnation.

 

 

 

 

 

FLASH!!!!!!!!!

InsideVC.com, (Ventura County Star) in an article entitled: "Rebels and rogues at Rubicon", dated August 3, 2001, reported the following news on Joseph's Rubicon doings for the 2001-2002 season:

Rubicon Theatre Company is bringing back its award-winning production
of N. Richard Nash's "The Rainmaker" for performances Thursday through
Sept. 9 at the Laurel Theatre in downtown Ventura.

And then what?

A brilliant young American concert pianist battles an Austrian music teacher with a mysterious past in John Marans' "Old Wicked Songs," a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. The play will star Harold Gould and Joseph Fuqua, with Jenny Sullivan ("The Little Foxes," "The Rainmaker") directing, from April 13 through May 19.

"J for J" will star John Ritter in a play written by Jenny Sullivan based on a journal kept by her father. It will be directed by Joseph Fuqua for performances from Oct. 20 through Nov. 3.

 http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_793219,00.html



Check out Rubicon's show information on "Old Wicked Songs", "J for J" and "The Rainmaker" (as well as info on Carl Anderson's appearance in: "Beggar's Holiday":

 http://www.rubicontheatrecompany.org/shows.htm

 


 

 

THE BOYS NEXT DOOR

 

Earlier this (2001) Spring, Joseph appeared as Barry in "The Boys Next Door", again at The Rubicon Theatre Company. Here is an article on the show, entitled "All-access theatre", from the 5/4/01 issue of Inside Ventura County: http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_409769,00.html

"...Rubicon regular Joseph Fuqua is Barry, a schizophrenic who fantasizes that he's a golf pro..." The show previewed Thursday and May 4 at 8 p.m. and opened May 5 at 7 p.m. with a gala at the Laurel Theatre, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura. It ran Wednesdays through Saturdays and 2 p.m Saturdays & Sundays through June 3. Tickets are $20 preview; $125 opening gala (which included catered post-show reception with cast and dignitaries); $27-$35 regular shows. The Sunday 7 p.m. performance was a benefit performance for the League of Women Voters of Ventura County. Call 805-667-2900.  As Listed in the 5/9/01 LA Times: The Boys Next Door Laurel Theater 1006 E. Main St., Ventura Rubicon Theater Company presents Tom Griffin's comedy about four developmentally disabled men, who live in a group home, and their overworked social worker. An opening gala will be held May 5, 7 p.m. Previews are May 3-4, 8 p.m.. Through Jun. 3 Sundays, 2 p.m. Wednesdays, 8 p.m. Thursdays, 8 p.m. Fridays, 8 p.m. Saturdays, 2 p.m., 8 p.m. Price: $20 to $35. Opening gala, $125, including intermission refreshments, plus a reception with the cast after the show at Landmark 78 restaurant; previews: $20, students, $18. Information: 805-667-2900."


And under Theatre Notes - In Fine Forum, in the 5/3/01 LA Times: http://www.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-Search-X!ArticleDetail-31386,00.html?search_area=Blended&channel=Search&search_text=%22The+Boys+Next+Door%22

Rubicon Theatre's production of "The Boys Next Door," which opens this weekend, features among its cast Dana Elcar, co-founder of the Santa Paula Theater Center and an actor with a long list of professional stage, screen and television credits.       Best known to younger audiences as the longtime co-star of the TV series "McGyver," Elcar seems not to have performed locally since Santa Paula's 1992 production of "Waiting for Godot."      

DETAILS           "The Boys Next Door" previews tonight and Friday at the Laurel, 1006 E. Main St., in Ventura. Tickets for these two evenings are $20; $18, students and seniors. The opening Saturday is $125 per person, followed by the first regular performance at 2 p.m. Sunday. After that, the regular run begins: 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday evenings, with Saturday and Sunday matinees at 2 p.m. through May 27. Tickets range from $25.50 to $35, and there are numerous special promotions. For reservations or further information, call the theater, at 805-667-2900 from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesdays-Saturdays. Here is a link to the 5/10/01 Ventura County Star review, entitled "Good Visit: 'The Boys Next Door'": http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_448109,00.html

"...Completing the foursome is Barry Klemper (Joseph Fuqua), a schizophrenic who fancies himself a golf pro and who charges $1.13 an hour for lessons on "how to handle a heckler in the gallery" and "the dos and don'ts of renting a golf cart."

Save for such eccentricities, Barry appears to be the most "normal" of the lot. But in Fuqua's skilled hands, the character is shown to be just as tragically and irreversibly damaged as his roommates -- if not more so.

The source of that damage arrives in the shape of veteran actor Dana Elcar as Barry's eerily sadistic father, a man who boasts that his son's first word was "bitch."

Elcar's real-life disability -- the star of "MacGyver" and co-founder of the Santa Paula Theater Center is now blind -- adds undeniable poignancy to his scenes with Fuqua, as the physical reality of the actor runs headlong into the delusional stories Barry has been telling about his father's athletic prowess..."

 

Here is a link to the LA Times 5/9/01 article on this show, entitled: "A Chance to Get to Know 'The Boys Next Door'":

http://www.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-Theater-X!ArticleDetail-32302,00.html

"...The sight of schizophrenic Barry (Joseph Fuqua) giving fake golf lessons to characters played by John Fink and Rojan Disparte elicits unabashed laughs...."

Here is a link to the 5/28/01 Ventura County Star article on this show as well, entitled: "Role of a Lifetime: Disabled Woman Acts Naturally On Stage":

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/coleen_cason/article/0,1375,VCS_221_560820,00.html

UPDATE - 2/27/02

I received the latest issue of "Crossings" from Karyl Lynn Burns (Executive Director and Co-Artistic Director of RTC), which includes a section she has titled:

"Robby for Rudy - "Boys Next Door" Cast Member Wins Robby Award for "Best Actor in a Comedy" in Southern California/Rubicon Received 9 Nominations":



"Crossings"

News from Rubicon Theatre Company

(Edited E-Mail Version Vol. 4; 02/26/01)

4. ROBBY FOR RUDY - "BOYS NEXT DOOR" CAST MEMBER WINS ROBBY AWARD FOR "BEST ACTOR IN A COMEDY" IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA/RUBICON RECEIVED 9 NOMINATIONS

Kudos to Rudy Willrich, who won the Robby Award last evening (NOTE: the awards were handed out on 2/25/02)  for "Best Actor in a Comedy." Willrich was competing in that category against an impressive list of artists including David Hyde Pierce, Paxton Whitehead, Douglas Sills and fellow cast members Joseph Fuqua and Dirk Blocker. The ceremony took place at the El Portal Theatre in North Hollywood. "Boys Next Door" received a total of nine nominations (Comedy Production; Director of a Comedy -Rod Lathim; Actor in a Comedy - Dirk Blocker, Joseph Fuqua, Rudolph Willrich; Supporting Actor in a Comedy - Grinnell Morris, Lance E. Nichols; Supporting Actress in a Comedy - Amy Ecklund; & a 9th nomination that was not listed on the URL page) . Tom Astor, who played the Gentleman Caller in "The Glass Menagerie," was also nominated. The Robby Awards are presented by Rob Stevens, theatre critics for Showmag.com. To read the Robby wrap-up, or to read the recent review of "Jacques Brel," log on to www.showmag.com - or more directly - http://www.showmag.com/features/features041.html.

 

I find it interesting that "The Boys Next Door" was nominated in the Comedy categories, because I think it falls more specifically into the "serio-comic" category, but there isn't a category for serio-comedy in the Robby Awards apparently.  Here is the entire "Best Actor In A Comedy" nominee list for the Robby Awards.  Joseph and his "Boys Next Door" roommates had some pretty prestigious company:

 

ACTOR IN A COMEDY

Dirk Blocker, The Boys Next Door
Joseph Fuqua, The Boys Next Door
Rudolph Willrich, The Boys Next Door

Stacy Mathewson, The Towering Inferno-The Musical!

Rod McLachlan, The Lonesome West

Paul O’Brien, The Lonesome West

David Hyde Pierce, Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks

Jack Powell, On Golden Pond

Michael Rothhaar, Death Defying Acts, International City Theatre

Douglas Sills, Much Ado About Nothing

Matt Walker, A Midsummer Saturday Night’s Fever Dream

Paxton Whitehead, The Circle

 



 

ANCESTRAL VOICES


UPDATE FOR 3/11/01:

RECEIVED THE FOLLOWING MESSAGE TODAY FROM KARYL LYNN BURNS AT RUBICON THEATRE COMPANY:

PRESS INFORMATION Press Contact: Helen Messina or Karyl Lynn Burns (805) 667-2912 Reservations/Box Office: (805) 667-2900

For Immediate Release:

March 8, 2001 Rubicon Theatre Company Announces Two Performances of A.R. Gurney's "Ancestral Voices" Sunday, March 18 and Monday, March 19 to Benefit Education Outreach Programs: Actors Scheduled to Perform at Press Time include JoBeth Williams, Tony Franciosa, Bonnie Bartlett, Lisa Pelikan, John Bennett Perry, and Joseph Fuqua. Ventura, CA - Local audiences will be hearing (and seeing) "Voices" later this month, as Rubicon Theatre Company presents two performances only of A.R. Gurney's "Ancestral Voices: A Family Story." Performances are slated for Sunday, March 18, and Monday, March 19 at 7:00 p.m. at the Laurel in Ventura's Downtown Cultural District. The two performances are benefits for Rubicon's Education Outreach programs. Tickets are $75, $65 for season subscribers. Like Rubicon's production of Love Letters last year, audiences will be surprised and delighted by the "voices" performing. Those confirmed to appear on one of the two nights include JoBeth Williams, Tony Franciosa, John Bennett Perry and Joseph Fuqua. Others will be announced in the next few days. Jenny Sullivan, whose credits include Pasadena Playhouse, Long Wharf, Williamstown, Off-Broadway, and Rubicon's production of The Little Foxes and The Rainmaker will helm the production. Ancestral Voices was described by Donald Lyons of the New York Post as "a beautiful chamber work in the great tradition of the American drama." A bittersweet play filled with nostalgia and humor, Ancestral Voices runs an hour and twenty minutes without intermission, and is staged as a concert work. Five actors sit on stools and read from scripts placed on music stands. The actors play five members of a well-to-do East Coast family in Buffalo, New York in the years after World War I, with a brief coda in the 1960s. The characters are grandmother, grandfather, mother, father and son. The story is told from the viewpoint of the son, Eddie, who goes from age 8 to age 30. As narrator, Eddie tries to give the audience his perspective on the woes and worries of the world and his own family, although he is constantly interrupted in his story telling by his instructive, nagging parents. The central issue of the play surrounds a scandal in the family. Eddie's grandmother has left his grandfather for a gentleman from the horsey set - the dashing cad Roger - whom Eddie must now call "Uncle Roger." Eddie's mother is flabbergasted; his father keeps a stiff upper lip. Eddie and his family attend awkward holidays at Grandmothers. Eddie goes to movie matinees with Grandmother. He learns about the mysteries of fishing and hunting, and the pain of being abandoned, from his Grandfather. Eddie tries to bring his grandparents back together. Says Rubicon's Artistic Director James O'Neil, The fortunes of Eddie's family seem to be linked, somehow, to the changes in Buffalo society and in a world on the verge of another war. Eddie's father warns his children, "We are going through some very difficult times. The family's in trouble, the city's in trouble, and the world is in the worst trouble of all." Ancestral Voices is written by A.R. Gurney, who also wrote Love Letters. Rubicon Theatre Company presented Gurney's Love Letters last year, with celebrities of stage and screen and respected local professionals. Those who appeared included Steve Allen, George Ball, David Birney, Dwier Brown, Kim Maxwell-Brown, Karyl Lynn Burns, Lane Davies, Jennifer Eaton, George Eskin, Felicia Farr, Linda Gray, Larry Hagman, Vicki Harrop, Hannah-Beth Jackson, Stacy Keach, Jack Lemmon, Bruce Liberty, Linda Livingston, Ann Lockhart, William Lucking, Amanda McBroom, Jayne Meadows, James O'Neil, John Bennett Perry, Linda Purl, David Ralphe, Ron Rezak, Christopher Vore and Stephanie Zimbalist. Ancestral Voices is set in Gurney's hometown of Buffalo, where he was born in 1930 to parents who were pillars of Buffalo's society. He attended boarding school at St. Paul's in New Hampshire and received a bachelor's from Williams College in 1952. Known to his friends as "Pete," Gurney joined the U.S. Navy during the Korean War and wrote shows to entertain military personnel. Following his discharge in 1955, he enrolled in the Yale School of Drama. (Coincidentally, the actor playing Eddie, Joseph Fuqua, is also a graduate of the Yale School of Drama MFY program.) Gurney's breakthrough success came in 1982 with The Dining Room. Other award-winning plays include The Middle Ages, Richard Cory, The Golden Age, What I Did Last Summer, The Wayside Motor Inn, Sweet Sue, The Perfect Party, Another Antigone, The Cocktail Hour, Love Letters, The Old Boy, The Fourth Wall, Later Life, A Cheever Evening, Overtime, Let's Do It (a Cole Porter musical), Labor Day, Far East, Syslvia, and Darlene and The Guest Lecturer. Gurney is the recipient of many awards, notably a Drama Desk Award in 1971, a Rockefeller Award in 1977 and two Lucille Lortel Awards in 1989 and 1994. He has also received awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Rockefeller Foundation and the New England Theatre Conference. Ancestral Voices is sponsored in party by generous donations from John and Glenda Hammer and Elise and Bill Kearney. Other season sponsors include Affinity Bank, American Express Financial Advisors, E. J. Harrison & Sons, Sandra and Jordan Laby, Barbara and Larry Meister, Miss M.L. Rentfrow, San Buenaventura Foundation for the Arts and Santa Barbara Bank & Trust. The Pierpont Inn and Racquet Club is the official hotel sponsor for all Rubicon Theatre events. Through the generosity of the Pierpont, Rubicon is able to host extraordinary guest artists from out-of-town and bring them to Ventura's Downtown Cultural District. Tickets for the two benefit performances of Ancestral Voices may be purchased at the Rubicon Theatre Company Box Office, located at 1006 E. Main Street (Laurel entrance weekdays). The $75/$65 ticket prices include a post-show reception downstairs at the theatre. Tickets may be charged by phone by calling (805) 667-2900. Visa, Mastercard and American Express accepted.

---##---

AS POSTED ON RTC'S WEBSITE:

 

STAR STUDDED

Special Performance

To Benefit Outreach Program

Special Performance Featuring:

Edward Asner • Bonnie Bartlett • Tony Franciosa • Joseph Fuqua

Michael Lerned • Stacy Keach • Lisa Pelikan • John Bennett Perry •JoBeth Williams


Rubicon Theatre Company Announces Two Performances of A.R. Gurney's
Ancestral Voices" Sunday, March 18, and Monday, March 19 at 7:00 p.m. at the Laurel in
Ventura's Downtown Cultural District to Benefit Education Outreach Programs.
Tickets for these special shows are $65 and $75 and include a post-show
reception. Call the box office for tickets.

Actors Scheduled to Perform at Press Time include:

Edward Asner

Bonnie Bartlett

Tony Franciosa

Joseph Fuqua

Michael Lerned

Stacy Keach

Lisa Pelikan

John Bennett Perry

JoBeth Williams

Tickets for these special shows are $65 and $75 
and include a post-show reception
Call The Box Office.

 

RUBICON THEATRE COMPANY
1006 E. Main Street, Ste. 300, Ventura, CA 93001
(805) 667-2900 • Fax (805) 677-2903

E-Mail: info@rubicontheatre.org

 Here is a link to the LA Times 3/15/01 article on this show, entitled: "Read Between the Lines": http://www.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-Search-X!ArticleDetail-25045,00.html?search_area=Blended&channel=Search&search_text=%22Ancestral+Voices%22

 

 

THE GLASS MENAGERIE


Joseph also, this past March, performed the role of Tom in “The Glass Menagerie”, along with Susan Clark (who you may remember for her performance in the film bio "Babe", on Babe Didrickson Zaharias, the famous golfer, and from the 80's sitcom "Webster").  

 

Joseph with Susan Clark
Courtesy of The Rubicon Theatre Company

 


This production was also with The Rubicon Theatre Company.  It played March 1-25, 2001.  

Tennessee Williams' classic American drama, "The Glass Menagerie",  performed by Rubicon Theatre Company at the Laurel Theatre, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura, previewed 8 p.m. Thursday, March 1, and Friday, March 2, 7 p.m. The gala opening on March 3rd featured complimentary intermission refreshments from Regina's Quality Catering (including a "glass"-like ice sculpture) and a post-show reception with the cast and special guests at Jonathan's at Peirano's (tickets for the gala were $125 and proceeds benefited the non-profit Center for Dispute Resolution and RTC's education outreach programs). Regular performances continued March 4-25, with 8 p.m. shows Wednesdays through Saturdays and 2 p.m. matinees Sundays. Preview tickets $20 general, $18 for students and seniors; regular tickets $20-$35 depending on the performance. Call 667-2900 for reservations and more information.

Below is the production's listing in the 3/4/01 LA Times:

Susan Clark stars as faded Southern belle Amanda in Rubicon Theatre Company's production of "A Glass Menagerie," Tennessee Williams' classic drama about a mother and her fragile daughter (Precious Chong) living in their separate worlds of illusion, with desperate-to-escape son Tom (Joseph Fuqua), awaiting the arrival of a Gentleman Caller (Tom Astor). -- Los Angeles Times


Also, here is an article on the show, entitled "Unforgettable", from the 2/23/01 issue of Inside Ventura County, in which Joseph talks about playing Tom:

http://www.insidevc.com/entertainment/365334.shtml

"...Joseph Fuqua, a Yale-trained actor already a veteran of three Rubicon shows, plays Tom. It's a role that, in many ways, closely parallels his own life.

"I lost my real mother when I was 5. Two years ago this May, I lost my father," he said. "And my brother is developmentally disabled. Being the baby of the family, I sort of kept my parents young by staying at home. So leaving the nest brought up a lot of feelings of regret."

The hardest part about performing in a Williams play, Fuqua said, is getting out of the playwright's way.

"Letting his words do the work is so important," he said. "James used the word 'muscular' when he described the words. He's right. Williams' script is muscular. It's textured. It's American. It's American Shakespeare."..."

 

Here is a link to the March 8, 2001 LA Times review, entitled:  "A Classy 'Menagerie'":

http://www.latimes.com/editions/ventura/20010308/t000020374.html

"...Joseph Fuqua--who has been featured in three earlier Rubicon productions--commands the stage as young Tom."

 

And a link to the March 9, 2001 Ventura County Star review, entitled "Haunting Memories":

http://www.insidevc.com/entertainment/stage/368327.shtml

"...Joseph Fuqua continues in a series of memorable roles with Rubicon, the most recent as the boisterous younger brother in "The Rainmaker." Here he brings his impeccable timing for comedy to the basically serious part of Tom, making the most of the rueful humor of the son who sees all too well his family's foibles. From the perspective of looking back at the situation, Tom sees the hopelessness of his mother's optimism and the tragedy that ultimately will smother his sister, Laura. Fuqua allows the audience to feel all the frustration of a trapped spirit, exploding into emotional bursts, followed by compunction. If there's one thing Fuqua could modify, it's his volume. The actor speaks so boldly that it can be a jarring contrast to the more conversational tone of the others."

 

And finally, a link to the review printed in/on ShowMag.com:

http://www.showmag.com/theater/theater326.html

"The images and feelings conjured up in Joseph Fuqua’s monologues as Tom, the writer remembering his family, were never fully realized in the playing....Fuqua did well in the role of Tom."

 

 


 

 

THE RAINMAKER

 

Joseph completed a run of "The Rainmaker" in the role of Jim on 11/5/00 at Rubicon Theatre Company's Laurel Theatre. Below are links to some of his reviews:  NOTE:  The Rubicon brought back October, 2000's well-received production of "The Rainmaker," cast (including Stephanie Zimbalist, Carlos Sanz, John Bennett Perry and Joseph Fuqua) and director (Jenny Sullivan) intact, from Aug. 9 through Sept. 9, 2001.
     

LOS ANGELES TIMES
http://www.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-Search-X!ArticleDetail-7390,00.html?search_area=Articles&channel=Search

"...Joseph Fuqua engenders cheers as his slow-speaking brother Jim, who sees more clearly with his heart than Noah sees with his head, but lacks the self-confidence to trust his own feelings."

SHOW MAG
http://www.showmag.com/theater/theater255.html  or  http://www.showmag.com/theater

"...Joseph Fuqua is a real scene-stealer as the rambunctious brother Jim. He'll believe anything because he's so trusting as well as gullible. But he often makes the most sense." 

USC STUDENT-AFFAIRS REVIEW
http://www.usc.edu/student-affairs/dt/V141/N37/06-light.37d.html 

"...The scene-stealer is Joseph Fuqua as Jimmy. Like his ruthless nephew in the Rubicon's great "Little Foxes" from last season, Fuqua imbues his characterization with a mischievous glee and an energetic nature that are notable even in his quietest moments, which, thank goodness, are very few!" 


FLASH!!!!!!!!!

InsideVC.com, (Ventura County Star) in an article entitled: "Rebels and rogues at Rubicon", dated August 3, 2001, reports the following news on Joseph's Rubicon doings for the coming season:

... Rubicon Theatre Company is bringing back its award-winning production of N. Richard Nash's "The Rainmaker" for performances Thursday through Sept. 9 at the Laurel Theatre in downtown Ventura.

And what of "The Rainmaker"?

Stephanie Zimbalist, Carlos Sanz, Joseph Fuqua and John Bennett Perry are returning to the roles they played in Rubicon's winter 2000 season production of the show. A gala re-opening performance and party will take place Aug. 11, when admission is $135 per person....

     http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_793219,00.html

A further link to another "Rainmaker" article from InsideVC.com, entitled: "Rebicon remounts Nash's 'Rainmaker'", dated June 29, 2001 (and, yes "Rebicon" is the way the article was titled):

http://www.insidevc.com/vcs/on_stage/article/0,1375,VCS_253_716022,00.html

Rubicon favorite Joseph Fuqua, last seen playing Barry in "The Boys Next Door," portrays one of Lizzie's brothers, while Ojai actor John Bennett Perry is H.C. Curry, her father.

The original production earned a Back Stage West Garland Award for its sound production, while Zimbalist and Fuqua earned acting nods during the 24th annual Robby Awards presented by Southern California theater critic Rob Stevens.


And one further link to yet another "Rainmaker" article, this one from the 10/12/01 edition of the LA Times, entitled:  "A Touch of Mysticism":

http://www.calendarlive.com/top/1,1419,L-LATimes-Search-X!ArticleDetail-6929,00.html


As noted in the link to the Ventura County, CA Community Theatre Site article entitled: "Ventura's Rubicon Theatre Company Received Two Theatre LA "Ovation" Nominations" (link below): RTC received Multiple Backstage West Honorable Mentions, two Robby Awards for this production - one to Joseph, and the other to Stephanie Zimbalist, as well as an REP Award to Joseph for his performance. 

http://www.barkerductions.com/theaters/rubicon/ovation.html  

 

 


 

 

MURDER IN THE FIRST

June 3 - 25, 2000

All Photos Courtesy of Rubicon Theatre Company



A touching and trenchant drama about the friendship which develops between a prisoner on trial for first degree murder and the young public defender who is assigned to defend him. Set in the 1940's the play is inspired by conflicting accounts of the events surrounding the Trial of Alcatraz, the case which many consider to have signaled the end of Alcatraz and the beginning of the prison reform in America. Directed by Linda Grey, this show features a professional cast including Ted Neeley, Joseph Fuqua, Larry Hagman and Dana Elear.

Larry Hagman makes a special appearance as Judge Clawson through June 10 (matinee). Dana Elear plays the role from June 10 (evening) through June 25.

 

For details on this LANDMARK production, see my 2 other pages on this website:

Murder In The First Experience

Murder In The First Production


As noted in the link to the Ventura County, CA Community Theatre Site article entitled: "Ventura's Rubicon Theatre Company Received Two Theatre LA "Ovation" Nominations" (link below): RTC received multiple Backstage West Honorable Mentions for this amazing production.  (See also the full article on my homepage under the link to RTC):

http://www.barkerductions.com/theaters/rubicon/ovation.html


***FLASH!!!!!***

UPDATE 9/17/03:

Courtesy of Mark Ellison (a.k.a. "Mark from Oz") (ozmarky@bigpond.net), apparently there was another production of this show in Australia this past March and April.  Check out the information at this link:

http://users.senet.com.au/~rodroach/murder.htm  

 

 


 

 

THE LITTLE FOXES



Cast of  RTC's "The Little Foxes"
Courtesy of Ed Krieger and The Rubicon Theatre Company


In 1999, Joseph (right end of this picture) played Leo to great acclaim in RTC's production, which starred Linda Purl (left end of this picture).  Here are some review links for this show:

http://www.newu.uci.edu/archive/1998-1999/spring/990531/q-990531-theatre.html  
http://www.paulb.com/lfox.htm
http://www.showmag.com/theater/theater174.html
http://www.insidevc.com/entertainment/stage/283661.shtml   

 

As noted in the link to the Ventura County, CA Community Theatre Site article entitled: "Ventura's Rubicon Theatre Company Received Two Theatre LA "Ovation" Nominations" (link below): RTC received multiple Backstage West Honorable Mentions for production.  (See also the full article on my homepage under the link to RTC):

http://www.barkerductions.com/theaters/rubicon/ovation.html  

 

 

 

 


 

ON THE JUMP

5/21-6/27/99

 

http://www.playbill.com/news/article/45729.html

 


Soelistyo & Chartoff Make The Jump w/ Glore at South Coast Rep, May 21-June 27


27 May 1999

1998 Tony nominee Julyana Soelistyo and television comedy veteran Melanie Chartoff co-star opposite Alan Oppenheimer (Sunset Boulevard) Richard Doyle, John Fleck, Patricia Fleck, Joseph Fuqua and Kellie Waymire in a new romantic comedy, On The Jump, starting previews May 21 at Costa Mesa's South Coast Repertory. Officially opening May 28, John Glore's play runs to June 27 on the Rep's mainstage.

Robbed and abandoned on her wedding night by her new spouse, a woman contemplates suicide on a nearby bridge. That's when things take a turn for the better. Glore based his comedy on a story by his wife, Amy Dunkleberger.

Actress Soelistyo received a Tony nomination for her work in Golden Child. She's also worked at several theatres in Seattle. Chartoff as numerous stage credits in New York and California (including Big River at La Jolla), but she's best known for appearances in films and television ("Fridays," "Weird Science"). Waymire, who plays the lead, Colleen, won a Drama-Logue Award for Sylvia at CA's Old Globe.

Directed by SCR associate artist Mark Rucker, On The Jump features sets by Neil Patel, costumes by Walker Hicklin, lighting by Scott Zielinski and sound by Justus Matthews. Dennis McCarthy provides original music for the production.

On The Jump is the centerpiece of South Coast Rep's second annual Pacific Playwrights Festival, which offers mountings of two workshop productions plus seven staged readings. Both workshops and two of the readings are by Latino authors; no coincidence, since the Fest, running June 10-20, also encompasses SCR's 14th annual Hispanic Playwrights Project.

The workshop stagings are Jose Rivera's References to Salvador Dali Make Me Hot! and Rogelio Martinez's Illuminating Veronica, to be directed by Lisa Portes. Readings at the PPF include:

Lupe, Now! by Jonathan Ceniceroz, directed by Luis Alfaro
Cuchifrito by Eduardo Andino, directed by Octavio Solis
Everett Beekin by Richard Greenberg, author of Three Days of Rain and the upcoming Off-Broadway play, Hurrah at Last.
The Mystery of Attraction by Marlane Meyer, directed by Jody McAuliffe
God of Vengeance by Donald Margulies, adapting Sholem Asch drama
The Altruists by Nicky Silver (The Food Chain), directed by David Warren
The Beginning of August by Tom Donaghy, author of Minutes From The Blue Route.

For tickets and information on On The Jump and the Pacific Playwrights Festival at South Coast Rep call (714) 708-5555.

-- By David Lefkowitz

 

 


 

ANGELS IN AMERICA - PART ONE AND TWO

1994-1995

 

 

 

 


 

ANTONY AND CLEOPATRA

Actors Theatre of Louisville - 1992

 

 


 

 


 

TWO GENTLEMEN OF VERONA

Cuccaracha Theatre Company (New York City) - 1990

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

EQUUS

Yale School of Drama

 

 


 

SWEET BIRD OF YOUTH

Cincinnati Playhouse - 1983-4

 

 

 


 

THE LEGEND OF DANIEL BOONE

Old Fort Harrod - 1982

 

 

 

 


 

BAD HABITS

JMU - 1981

 

 

 

 


 

DAMES AT SEA

C.C.H.S. 12/17-18/77

 

 

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