Catch the one-act line-up

Last weekend Offstage opened four new one-acts:  “Elephants and Coffee,” “Heathens,” “Shakespeare on the Rocks,” and “Mornings After.” The shows were chosen from over 100 scripts that Offstage collected when they sent out a national call for plays. “Once we signed on the four directors, we read the scripts, and they chose the ones they were most interested in,” says Jeff Kitchen, one of the producers. The whole process from collection to opening night has only taken an incredibly short six weeks.
“I came up with the idea for this show to give writers and directors a middle step. We normally produce really short plays and full-scale productions,” says Kitchen. “The idea of a one-act series seemed to be a way to let people dig their teeth in without getting buried under the load of work it takes to pull off a full-length play.”
Offstage does not have a permanent home. They put on their shows in a variety of venues: bars, outdoor amphitheaters, the local train station, warehouses-turned-theaters, often wherever an empty space exists. For this production, they have teamed up with noted local auctioneer Norman Dill, whose building in the Allied Business park just happened to be available this month. “This space is well-suited for these shows,” Kitchen says. “It was lucky for us to get it.”
Here’s the rundown on the shows. Jenni Funk directs “Elephants and Coffee,” a funny examination of love and how it can appear in the most unexpected of packages. Offstage regular Tracie Steger takes the helm of “Shakespeare on the Rocks,” a wild romp through the bard’s work and world with Shakespeare himself as the bartender/guide. Sean Chandler directs “Heathens,” a dark comedy that looks at Christianity, Satan, and Goody’s Headache Powder. And “Mornings After,” directed by Chris Beery, follows the exploits of one couple from their initial one-night stand through marriage and their trek to old age.
Kitchen extends an invitation your way. “Join us for an entertaining evening by checking out these funny, bizarre, charming, and incredibly unique plays,” he says.
You can take him up this weekend.

“Four Plays” continues Thursday and Friday, May 16-17, at 1713-2A Allied St. (near Circa). 8pm. $6 at the door. 244-8432.

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