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February 13, 2008

Production Week

Wendy_vanderwell_odd_couple_union_sIt's been a while since I've posted what we've been up to. January and February have been crazy months. Not only have I been busy closing out 2007 projects for work and getting 2008 projects off the ground, but the winter weather has been daunting. We've also been neck-deep in the spring production for Union Street Players.

It's now "production week". The female version of Neil Simon's "The Odd Couple" opens a week from tomorrow. It seems that Wendy and I have spent every spare moment working on the show and getting ready to open. Wendy is playing the slobby Olive Madison and is doing her usual masterful job on stage while keeping me and the behind-the-scenes aspects of the production on task.

I've enjoyed directing as I always do. We've got a small cast and crew, which is easier on one-hand. It's simpler to manage a smaller number of people, and this group has been a joy to work with. On the other hand, smaller cast and crew means that you have fewer volunteers. Usually, a large cast means more parents, spouses and friend on the periphery who are willing to pitch in to help with the show. So, everyone is doing more - helping with the set, helping with props, helping with lighting, etc. That means the level of time and involvement is even greater than usual.

It's always exciting to see a show come together. Production week is a heady mix of elation and anxiety. We have a lot to do before opening night, but the show is hilarious and I can't wait to hear the audience's laughter. One way that you can tell you've got a good script is when the cast still laughs at all the jokes they've said and heard a million times. Last night at the run-through the cast and crew were constantly laughing.

The show is Thu-Sat Feb 21-23 at 7 p.m. with a 2 p.m. matinee on Sunday Feb 24th. Tickets are only $6 in advance and $8 at the door. For anyone who's a regular reader, I'd invite you to take an evening and scoot down to Pella for an evening of live entertainment! If you want to order tickets in advance, you can call in a credit card order to Wendy or me during the day (641-620-9107). I hope to see you there!

photo: Wendy plays Olive Madison to Suzi Jones' Florence Unger.

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