Theatre Charleston is calling all theatergoers to apply to become voters in the second annual Theatre Charleston Awards. The hosting organization supports, advocates, and promotes Charleston’s theater industry by providing services that strengthen the operations of the member theaters, and the annual awards are a great way to do that.
They're seeking patrons, artists, educators, and journalists with the skills necessary to effectively rate all areas of a production. The voters selected will receive complimentary tickets to attend at least eight productions at a minimum of five different theaters during the 2013/2014 season. As a voter you’ll be required to attend productions of all genres in all types of venues and you must be willing to serve for one full year (Aug. to July).
Applications should be submitted to Emily Wilhoit at firstname.lastname@example.org, or to any Theatre Charleston Member Theatre by March 1 at 5 p.m. For more details and to download the application, visit theatrecharleston.com/awards.
Big news out of Summerville: The Flowertown Players recently hired Charleston theater vet JC Conway as their new artistic director after previous artistic director Sean Lakey moved to Georgia at the end of last season.
Known for his work in the local contemporary theater scene, Conway is an interesting choice for the small-town community theater. He’s been a driving force in Footlight’s Late Night Series and has directed at Midtown and Threshold. He also founded Theatre /verv/ in 2005, producing boundary-breaking works like Blue Room and Bash. The Flowertown Players, on the other hand, are better known for family-friendly crowd-pleasers like Annie and The Odd Couple.
So is Flowertown about to get more edgy? “Right now what I’m doing is getting a feel for the audience and the volunteer base to see if there’s a market for that, then that’ll be a bridge we cross when we get there,” Conway says. “If not, I’m not going to try to force that kind of theater on an audience that doesn’t want it. With them doing Chicago at end of this year and some of the shows that I was handed as potentials for next season, I feel that they might be moving a little bit in that direction ... I think we’ll see something you might not have expected Flowertown to produce in the past, but it’s still going to be a good family atmosphere out there.”
Although Flowertown is now his No. 1 priority, Conway hopes to continue contributing to other local theater companies, and in turn he hopes to draw the city’s theater professionals to Summerville. “We only grow by working with other people,” he says. “We can get caught in a rut by working in the same space over and over again.”
Find out more about this season at Flowertown at flowertownplayers.org.
The Village Playhouse broke ground on their new downtown theater this past summer, and though they were hoping to open their new season this month, they’ve had to push back the opening until December.
According to co-owner and artistic director Keely Enright, “The construction has taken longer than anticipated and we won’t be opening Love, Loss and What I Wore as planned. We are moving that production to the end of the season and opening instead in December with The Man Who Came to Dinner.” Enright says they’re hoping to have the steel beam construction done by the end of the week.
The ambitious renovation project, which we wrote about in June, is transforming the old Meddin Brothers meatpacking warehouse on Woolfe Street into an expansive theater space for the company, formerly based in Mt. Pleasant. The theater is just part of a major wave of revitalization taking place along that stretch of Upper King Street.
Find out more about the Village Playhouse at thevillageplayhouse.com.
Called “a show for anyone guilty of contributing to the 21st century,” The Satire Diaries: Too Stupid to Fail mocks everything from politics and the arts to dating and movies. Nothing is out of bounds in this roast-a-thon. Some of the award-winning sketches will include The CliffsNotes version of The Wizard of Oz, Kermit the Frog getting real, and an operetta about human fertilization.
The musical revue will feature Emily Giant, Christina Leidel, Sam Jackel and Stan Gill. Starting this Friday, the show will hit The Threshold Repertory Theatre over the next two weekends. After a brief break, the satire will be back in town at the end of October and first weekends of November at the Creative Spark Center for the Arts. Tickets are $22 general admission and $19 for students, seniors and educators. Call (843) 881-3780 or visit creativespark.org for ticketing information.
The Footlight Players announced a major staff change this morning as Richard Heffner has taken over as executive producing director. Former executive director Jocelyn Jenkins, who had held the post since 2006, “changed gears and decided to stay home” with her new baby, according to Heffner.
Heffner has worked with the Footlight Players since 1988, when he started as the theater’s resident scenic designer and technical director. As executive director, he will oversee all artistic and production matters, including stage and lighting design, planning seasons, recruiting talent, and approving budgeting. He will report to the board of directors. He also serves as vice president of the League of Charleston Theatres.
“The plan right now is to get everything stabilized and on track, and then we’ll make some decisions about the future once that’s taken care,” Heffner says.