8 min read
Posted on 07.30.08
  • 8 min read
  • Posted on 07.30.08

MayorSlay.com passes along the following information about the 2008 St. Louis Political Theatre Festival from our pals at New Line Theatre:

Twelve of St. Louis’ most exciting, most adventurous theatre companies have come together in an unprecedented collaboration to bring to local audiences the second bi-annual St. Louis Political Theatre Festival. As part of the Festival, St. Louis Actors’ Studio has announced an entire season of shows about politics and power, New Line Theatre will run Hair for six weeks, The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis will hold pre-show and post-show discussions about Frost/Nixon, and The Immediacy Theatre Project will hold an opening reception for the Festival on August 15, after opening night of the world premiere of Johnny A. Cannon II: Johnny Descending.

The 2008 festival features fifteen shows (several of which are St. Louis premieres) running August through November, in venues all over the St. Louis metro area (like a smaller version of the world-famous Edinburgh Fringe Festival), bringing the most important issues of the day to the stages of St. Louis. These shows will challenge audiences to think about and get involved in the great struggles of our times and our country, as we head for one of the most crucial Presidential elections in our lifetimes.

For more information, contact Scott Miller, 314-773-6526 or NewChaz64@aol.com, or use the addresses below to find individual companies and performances

THE FESTIVAL SHOWS

The Immediacy Theatre Project presents the world premiere of
JOHNNY A CANNON II: JOHNNY DESCENDING
August 15-30, 2008, Fridays and Saturdays, 8:00 p.m.
The Tin Ceiling, 3159 Cherokee
618-978-8470
www.immediacytheatre.org
Johnny A Cannon is back in this sequel to Immediacy Theatre Project’s 2006 satire on pop culture. After Johnny defeated Saruman the Puce and Nefarious Villain, he and Party Guest Number Four departed to live their life of peace together, but a new and darker thing threatens the safety of the United Confederacy of the New Americas. The Others have been killing off the Secret Council of the Six, and only Johnny’s mother now remains. Meanwhile, the incumbent President President fights for reelection against his upstart opponent Dark Horse, Danny DeVito searches for a mystic stone, and all our hopes rest on Goldie Hawn Wenobi.
Opening Night Reception for the St. Louis Political Theatre Festival after the August 15 performance at The Tin Ceiling.

St. Louis Shakespeare presents
KING LEAR
August 15-24, 2008
Grandel Theatre, 3610 Grandel Square
314-361-5664
www.stlshakespeare.org
When England’s aging King Lear renounces his throne to divide his kingdom among his three daughters, treachery, madness and murder soon follow. After banishing Cordelia, his loyal daughter, Lear is betrayed and cast out by her elder sisters, Goneril and Regan. Meanwhile, evil brews at Gloucester castle as Edgar falls victim to his brother Edmund’s deceptions.

The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis presents
FROST / NIXON
September 3-28, 2008, call for show times
Loretto-Hilton Center for the Performing Arts, 130 Edgar Road
314-968-4925
www.repstl.org
David Frost's 1977 interviews with Richard Nixon, following the Watergate scandal and the President's humiliating resignation, drew the largest audience ever for television news. Could this British talk show host, with a playboy reputation and no known political convictions, be the one to elicit the apology the world awaited from the man at the center of one of America's greatest political scandals? An Olivier, Tony Award and Drama Desk nominee for Best Play by Peter Morgan. Pre-show discussions Sept. 23 and 25, and post-show discussions performances on Sept. 10, 11, 18, and 24.

The NonProphet Theatre Company presents
THE PATRIOTIC FREEDOM BINGO MACHINE
September 5, 2008, 8:00 p.m.
Off Broadway, 3505 Lemp Avenue
314-752-5075
www.nptco.org
The NonProphets take their award winning sketch comedy show and turn it on its political ear by presenting 24 sketches that hit all the hot button issues of the day. No side is spared in this free-for-all night of self-righteous comedy. Special guest host to be announced.

Stray Dog Theatre presents
REGRETS ONLY
September 11-27, 2008, Thurs. -Sat., at 8:00 p.m., and Sept. 27 at 2:00 and 8:00 p.m.
Tower Grove Abbey, 2336 Tennessee Avenue
314-865-1995
www.StrayDogTheatre.org
Paul Rudnick’s topical comedy of upper class manners explores the politics of marriage, friendships, and The Powers That Be. In a Park Avenue penthouse high above Manhattan we meet a prominent attorney, his deliriously social wife and her closest friend, one of the world's most successful fashion designers who has recently lost his gay lover. Add a daughter's wedding plans, some major gowns, the President of the United States, and stir.

New Line Theatre presents
HAIR
September 11-Oct. 18, 2008, Weds.-Sat., 8:00 p.m.
Washington University South Campus (formerly CBC High School), 6501 Clayton Road, just east of Big Bend
314-534-1111
www.NewLineTheatre.com
The Great American Love-Rock Musical, truly an experience like none other you’ve ever had in the theatre, still one of the most important works in the history of the American theatre, a piece about so much more than its drugs and rock music and its famous nude scene. Drawing from the anti-war movement, the hippie culture, the experimental theatre movement, the drug culture, rock and roll, the Beat poetry of Allen Ginsberg, Eastern philosophies, and so much more, HAIR emerged in 1967 as one of the towering achievements of the twentieth century, a work of theatre so fully realized, so culturally significant, so shockingly real and honest -- and so iconically American -- that still today it retains its power to move, thrill, and shock audiences, and to change forever the lives of those who work on it.

The Orange Girls present
SCORCHED
September 12-28, 2008, Fri. and Sat. 8:00 p.m., and Sun. 2:00 p.m.
Anheuser-Busch Studio Theatre at COCA, 524 Trinity Ave.
314-520-9557
www.orangegirls.org
As two adult children seek to resolve the mystery of their mother's life, their journey to the truth forces them to reconsider who and what they are. The Orange Girls present the United States debut of Wajdi Mouawad's award-winning play which celebrates the triumph of the spirit over the forces of silence, catastrophe and terrorism.

West End Players Guild presents
COPENHAGEN
September 19-21, 26-28, 8:00 p.m. Fri-Sat; 2:00 p.m. Sun
Union Avenue Christian Church, 733 N. Union
314-367-0025
www.westendplayers.org
Michael Frayn’s drama about German Physicist Wenrer Heisenberg and his Danish counterpart, Niels Bohr, who revolutionized atomic science in the 1920s. Now, in 1941, they find themselves on opposite sides of a World War when they meet in Copenhagen.

St. Louis Actors’ Studio presents
Jean Anouilh's
ANTIGONE
Sept. 19-Oct. 5
Gaslight Theatre 358 N Boyle in historic Gaslight Square
314-458-2978
www.stlas.org
St. Louis Actors' Studio opens its Power and Politics season with Antigone by French playwright Jean Anouilh. This adaptation of the Greek tragedy sets Antigone in modern times. Originally produced in Nazi-occupied France, Antigone's tragedy is not based on her inability to change her fate, rather it is founded on her futile struggle against the all-powerful state. This production is directed by artistic director Milt Zoth.

That Uppity Theatre Company presents
Playback Workshop Theatre in
COMING OUT STORIES 2008: YOURS, MINE, AND OURS
Oct 11, 2008 (National Coming Out Day), 8:00 p.m.; Sunday, Oct 12, 3:00 p.m.
Missouri Historical Society, Forest Park
314 995-4600
www.uppityco.com
With the recent legalization of gay marriage in California, have lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered people moved into a different level of mainstream acceptance? Or is a backlash on the rise, especially in this election year? Given the political and social climate, what is the significance of "coming out," a traditional rite of passage? What are the advantages? The pitfalls? What might be the connections between coming out and getting married? Audience members of all genders and orientations will have the opportunity to share some of their own coming out stories as well as those of friends and family members through the spontaneity of skilled improvisation by Playback Workshop Theatre. This event was so well received by a sold-out crowd during the first St. Louis Political Theatre Festival that it is back by popular demand. But with improvisation, there are always new stories to be told and shared.

Stray Dog Theatre presents
PIPPIN
October 23-November 8, 2008, Thursday-Saturday, 8:00 p.m. and Nov. 8, 2:00 and 8:00 p.m.
Tower Grove Abbey, 2336 Tennessee Avenue
314-865-1995
www.StrayDogTheatre.org
The classic musical tale of one man’s search for the meaning of life follows the son of Charlemagne. The magical Leading Player narrates as Pippin endures trials of war, love, and politics before finding his true self.

Upstream Theater presents
BLOOD KNOT
Oct. 23 - Nov 9, 2008, Thursday-Saturday 8:00 p.m., Sundays at 7:00 p.m.
Kranzberg Arts Center, 501 N. Grand
314-863-1077
www.upstreamtheater.org
Athol Fugard’s Blood Knot tells the story of two brothers in 1960’s South Africa: one distinctly black, and one light-skinned enough to pass for white. Squeezed together in a run-down shack, the two men struggle with each other and themselves, with poverty and possibility, with hope and the bitter reality of apartheid. A brilliant exploration of the ties that bind -- or fetter, and a searing look at racism and its repercussions.

St. Louis Actors’ Studio presents
9 PARTS OF DESIRE
November 7- 23
Gaslight Theatre 358 N Boyle in historic Gaslight Square
314-458-2978
www.stlas.org
St. Louis Actors' Studio presents a St. Louis premiere - Iraqi-American playwright Heather Raffo's 9 Parts of Desire. First performed in August 2003, 9 Parts of Desire shines a spotlight on a cross-section of Iraqi women in "an unusually timely meditation on the ancient, the modern and the feminine in a country overshadowed by war." Artistic Director Milt Zoth will direct this critically acclaimed show that The New Yorker calls "an example of how art can remake the world."

Bill Chott presents
COMEDY ON PARADE
Monday nights throughout November, 8:00 p.m.
Atomic Cowboy, 4140 Manchester Ave
314-775-0775
www.atomic-cowboy.com
www.theimprovtrick.com
Star of television and film, Bill Chott presents the return of Comedy on Parade, St. Louis's Independent Comedy Night, and all throughout November, the focus will be on politics. Before his last trip to LA, his edgy comedy showcase drew huge crowds that summoned up memories of the cutting edge comedy scene of long ago in Gaslight Square. In the last run of this amazing show, St. Louis was introduced to the stars of tomorrow. This time, he's coming to The Atomic Cowboy.

The NonProphet Theatre Company presents
LAURA’S BUSH
Dates and Venue to be Announced
314-752-5075
www.nptco.org
The NonProphets present this wickedly funny and pointed play by Jane Martin centered around a small town dominatrix and a librarian who set out to save Laura Bush

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