As a new theater company working on its first production, Arcturus Theater Company has been spending a good portion of its efforts simply building up the infrastructure to run a small theater company. Much of it is a learn-as-you-go experience. One of the guidebooks we’ve relied on is entitled How to Run a Theater, which I kept on misreading as How to Ruin a Theater. Seriously, though, Arcturus is heartwarmed by the support it has received from others in helping us feed this hungry monster. In turn, Arcturus is creating a generous, friendly haven for collaborative artists.
Arcturus’s first show is a set of short oddball gems by Samuel Beckett:That Time, Embers, and Rough for Theatre II, running January 24 to February 3, 2013, at the DC Arts Center, 2438 – 18th Street, NW, Washington, DC.
The three plays, to be shown together at each performance, present individuals in despair and loneliness, but will be presented in a way that amplifies the poetry, humor, and humanity of the text. We fell in love with That Time after reading it a few years ago and thought it would be splendid to be able to hear it rather than simply read it. We added the other two plays to fill it out into a two-hour show, and the three plays beautifully complement each other thematically.
It is amazing to consider the great director Ingmar Bergman was denied the rights to stage Embers because Beckett thought it was strictly a radio play. But times have changed and we see Arcturus now has the opportunity to show off this work with a physically present actor who will bring this piece to life in a highly entertaining manner. Our cast and crew have come up with clever and artful ideas, which we are incorporating into our show to make this a “good night out” for the audience.
Featured players are Brit Herring, John Brennan, Kim Curtis, and Ned Read, joined by Wendy Wilmer, Peter J. Orvetti, Joe Shaffner, and Anastasiya Orlova. Sound Design is by J. Michael Whalen. Costume Design is by Adalia Vera Tonneyck. Scenic Design is by Stephen Strosnider. Sound and Lighting Operation by Eric Wells. This is my stage directing debut.
Arcturus has already held auditions for its next show, a drama to be presented in August with five actors, two of whom are adolescents. In the next month, the Duke Ellington School will sponsor audition sessions to cast one of these roles. On the backburner is a comic dance show with music composed entirely by local musicians. Since there will be no spoken words, it will be very un-Beckett, but talent is engaged and the show is already in the works!
3 by Samuel Beckett: That Time, Embers, and Rough for Theatre II plays from January 24-February 3, 2013 at DC Arts Center – 2438 18th Street, NW, in Washington, DC. For tickets, purchase them online.