My play ALWAYS WITH ME at the Players Theatre in Greenwich Village

In an earlier post I had mentioned that my play ALWAYS WITH ME was to be featured in the Players Theatre Short Play and Musical Festival in Greenwich Village.  The theme of the festival is: NYC – Only in New York.  Here are the additional details as promised.

Performance dates:
Thursday, June 8 @ 7:00 PM
Friday, June 9 @ 7:00 PM
Saturday, June 10 @ 7:00 PM
Sunday, June 11 @ 3:00 PM

The cast:
Max Hanau as John
Kasey Moorhouse as Ellen
Sophie Larin as Susan
Directed by Pamela Wilson
Assistant Director Chelsea Robinson

Tickets will be on sale soon at http://www.shortplaynyc.com/ for $30.  If you use the discount code CAST you save $10 each.  Reservations are recommended.  We are the first weekend of a three week festival.  There are four other plays in our weekend and the audience casts ballots each night on best play with the winner for each weekend receiving a $100 prize.

This play (with a slightly different cast) will be performed again for Plays & Prestidigitation 8: That Certain Someone Edition at Polaris North (www.polarisnorth.org) July 14-16.  It will be on a bill with other short plays including my play BABY TALK.  I also host this weekend with magical interludes between each work.

I hope you can join us for one of these performances coming up soon.

 

Players Theatre 6

As always you can find more at http://www.walterthinnes.com and on Twitter @walterthinnes

A terrific Bandstand on Broadway

What a rousing good time that has you crying one moment and cheering wildly the next. The new American Musical Bandstand is a terrific show.  It helps that I like swing music and a whopping good story.

The performances of the entire cast, especially Laura Osnes, Corey Cott and Beth Leavel, are first rate.  The energy and choreography is fantastic.  And I have a new theme song – “Everything Happens” in the second act.

All that said, I am afraid this will not be around so long.  With limited Tony nominations – and not for Best Musical- it may not be able to stand out enough at the box office.  Especially in a season where we have 13 new musical on Broadway – and some of those outstanding and flashier.

So see it if you get the chance.  Before it flies away.  I’m confident you will enjoy it as much as I did.

BWAY Bandstand

As always you can find more at http://www.walterthinnes.com and on Twitter @walterthinnes

Groundhog Day on Broadway

Groundhog Day was a earth shaking movie that turned an obscure weather predicting rodent into a cultural phenomenon.  This was largely due to director and script doctor Harold Ramis though Bill Murray often gets the credit.  My favorite scene:

Phil: What would you do if you were stuck in one place and every day was exactly the same, and nothing that you did mattered?

Ralph: That about sums it up for me.

 

Which happily is one of the lines that gets referenced in the new Broadway Musical.  It is fast paced and fun to watch and quite slickly mounted.  But all through it I couldn’t help wondering, why?  Nothing they could put on that stage could supplant the joy of watching that movie.  They can hope to ride on the popular feeling and borrow some of the spirit, but again, why?  And with all the great new musicals on the boards this season, why?

The music is fine but not distinctive, the performances as original as they can be in the context and effect credits pretty darn good as well.  I had a good evening at the theater, but why?

BWAY Groundhog Day

As always you can find more at http://www.walterthinnes.com and on Twitter @walterthinnes

A Meeting Without End Moment

I’ve written a number of short plays and they sometimes seem to go in and out of vogue as they are chosen or rejected by various theaters around the country.  Recently I’ve had two pieces of good news about a ten-minute play “Meeting Without End.”  It sends up corporate speak and company meetings (I’ve had to endure too many of them).

Rover Dramawerks of Plano, Texas (between Dallas and Fort Worth) has chosen it to be included in their third annual 10-minute comedy play festival July 20-29.  The list of winners:

Crime Spree by Tom Deiker

Fighting Mr. Right by Barbara Lindsay

I Was Fine Until You Came Into the Room by Rich Orloff

Locker 142 by William Newkirk

Meeting Without End by Walter Thinnes

Romeo and Juliet: Epilogue by William Sikorski

Small Talk by David MacGregor

Therapy Dog by Scott Mullen

Welcome to Intercourse by Tracey Jane Smith

In addition my niece Juliana (Toni) Thinnes chose the play for her directing class project and it will be performed in May at Mary Baldwin University in Staunton, Virginia.  I am looking forward to attending the Saturday, May 13 performance at 7:30 and will participate in a talkback after the show.

rover-dramawerksmary-baldwin-2

As always you can find more at http://www.walterthinnes.com and on Twitter @walterthinnes

Significant Other on Broadway

Significant other has transferred to Broadway from the earlier run at Roundabout.  Up and bursting into the big leagues Joshua Harmon has written quite the vehicle for actor Gideon Glick.  The production is expertly acted and well mounted on the stage of the Booth Theatre, my favorite Broadway venue.  The story of a gay man who cannot quite find his soulmate watches his straight girl friend posse slip away to marriages one by one until he finds himself alone with his best friend and without a significant other.

It is a funny script which kept me interest the entire night and production values are high. I left unsatisfied, in ways I cannot quite adequately describe.  I think the self-pitying main character kept cycling through the same routine and never found a way out, which is I guess the point of the play.  However, spending the evening with such a miserable character who cannot break free was not satisfying.  It was pointed out to me that I dearly love Long Days Journey into Night which features four such miserable creatures for a far longer evening.  My answer is that they are making each other miserable while the lead character in the play does it all by his lonesome.  Misery loves company.

bway-significant-other

As always you can find more at http://www.walterthinnes.com and on Twitter @walterthinnes

Meeting Without End at Mary Baldwin

I am delighted to announce that my short play “Meeting Without End” will be performed in mid-May at Mary Baldwin University in Staunton, VA.  It will be done by a member of a directing class as part of a project.  I am confident it will be well directed because it will be led by a certain Juliana (Toni) Thinnes.  Yep.  My niece.  Cool.  Hope I get a chance to see it first hand!    More details as it becomes available!

mary-baldwin-2

As usual you can find more at http://www.walterthinnes.com and on Twitter @walterthinnes

Happy Birthday, Leonard in play festival!

The Player’s Theater Short Play and Music Festival (with a focus on Sex!) has invited us to present my short play “Happy Birthday, Leonard” from February 22-26 in Greenwich Village.  It will be directed by Pamela Wilson and feature Joan Shepard and Sophie Lauren.  We are excited to be part of the Festival and have started putting the show together.  We will have more details as we get closer including an inside ticket discount code and performance times.  And there will be more news about this show in the next couple of weeks so stay tuned!

players-theater-sex-cropped

As always you can find more information on my website http://www.walterthinnes.com and on Twitter @walterthinnes

The Illusionists – Turn of the Century

The current magic show on Broadway is an extension of The Illusionists franchise which has done two previous holiday season shows when short term theaters become available and also has an active touring presence.  The premise is that you will get to see a handful of different magical styles in an evening doing everything from escapes to mentalism to children magic to you name it.  This has proved a popular format perhaps due to a lack of dominant magical personalities today or perhaps a reflection of our splintered attention span in today’s world.

Not only have I seen and spoken with some great magic personalities of the last few decades (Harry Blackstone Jr., David Copperfield, Penn & Teller) but I still perform a bit of magic myself when I host evenings of new plays at Polaris North.  I started performing magic when I was an actor and preferred other stage gigs to waiting tables.  While these Illusionists shows have a sheen and feel of something new, I have news for you folks.  Pretty much every concept in magic was included in a collection of 8 books called the Tarbell Course in Magic that was written between the 1930’s and 1960’s.  It is a great addition to my library.  All the “new” acts and tricks are taken from those principles and wrapped in a shiny new dressing.

I did not see the previous two Broadway incarnations of this show but heard they were loud and aggressive.  Because they have themed this for the turn of the century (the last century in the golden age of magic) it is more restrained and stylish.  It is pretty darn good and lots of fun to watch.  Pamela finally had to tell me to stop showing her how it was done so she could just sit back and enjoy the wonder.  Highly recommended and good for all ages.  See it if it tours near you, which it likely will eventually.

bway-the-illusionists-turn-of-the-century

A Bronx Tale, the Musical

What a great show.  Unlike most of the world I was not familiar with Chazz Palminteri’s previous iterations of his childhood immersion in the mob world of The Bronx.  He did a one man off Broadway show, a movie, a Broadway version of his one man show and has now turned it into a musical.  Pretty good results from one story.

So this tale was new to me but it was clear most of the audience was already familiar with it.  The music by Alan Menken was perfectly fitting and a welcome break from some of his Disney work.  He’s terrific in many realms but I like when he writes for adults.  The sound was perfect for the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s milieu of the story.

The performances were first rate and full bore, the direction and design elements excellent.  Could be a big hit for the Longacre and a musical that can hang around a while.

bway-a-bronx-tale-the-musical

Jersey Boys

Took me long enough.  Finally made my way to see Jersey Boys on Broadway.  One reason is that I am a Bargain Broadway Buyer.  I use a couple of discount ticket sites to avoid paying full ticket prices.  It means I miss a few sold out shows but I am able to see many more shows because I pay less for each one.  I don’t see everything but I see about 2/3 of whatever is on Broadway at any one time.  As Jersey Boys began to wind down to their January closing they began offering on one of my discount sites.

I am very glad I caught it.  This is a fabulous show, but you don’t need to hear me say it.  You’ve probably already seen it in New York or on the road.  I’m late to the bandwagon.  Well narrated from several points of view it also includes great music from Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons.  See it if you haven’t already.  If you’ve already seen it, see it again.  Fabulous.

bway-jersey-boys