Author: mcct

Crew Profile: Emily McGee Celebrates Her Directorial Debut with Uncertainty

Crew Profile: Emily McGee Celebrates Her Directorial Debut with Uncertainty

When Uncertainty came to life the first time, Emily McGee portrayed Werner Heisenberg. This time around, she is stepping behind the curtain to make this hilarious show her directorial debut. In her career, Emily has been an actress, costumer, props master, and so much more. Read on to find out why Uncertainty makes the perfect directorial debut, as well as why she loves Bloomington and MCCT.

 

How did you get involved in MCCT? What made you audition for this show?

 

I was first involved with MCCT back in 2013, I think?  I was cast as Titania in A Midsummer Night’s Dream.  I just became reacquainted with MCCT last year when I was cast in Travesties, which was also done at Oddball Fermentables.  I had taken a look at the upcoming season and realized that there was a deep need for some comedy, and it all just sort of clicked.

 

How long have you been acting/involved in theater?

 

I have had a 26-year love affair with theatre.  I was bitten by the theatre bug when I was in a production of The Music Man and here I am, over 130 productions later on and I still love it.

 

What do you do when you’re not rehearsing?

 

It is very rare that I am not rehearsing for something! When I’m not rehearsing, I can usually be found hanging out with my husband and my cats!

 

What has been an unexpected challenge of this production? 

 

This is officially my directorial debut.  I felt ready to really actually direct something; but, usually, when people just start out directing, they usually pick a show with 2-4 actors.  It didn’t occur to me until I was setting up the scripts and water for the table read that I took on an ensemble show with 9 actors!

 

What has been most rewarding? 

 

I am humbled by my cast.  Every day they come to rehearsal with something more to offer and it just blows my mind!  I have also enjoyed watching actual friendships form amongst them.  There are so many moments that are coming out of the script that are fueled with a genuine care for each other.  That’s not a thing that can be directed, and it is just a wonderful thing to see.

 

Why should audiences come to see Uncertainty?

 

Nick has crafted a script that is ridiculously funny and sometimes heart-breaking in its way, but in the end, I feel like the play has something really profound to say about friendships or the family that you choose for yourself. It is just so rare to see a well-crafted comedy that actually has a strong message at its core.

 

What are your top three dream roles?

 

Martha in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Nurse Ratched in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Blanche Dubois in Streetcar Named Desire

 

You acted in this production before directing it. How are the two different? 

 

Oh my gosh! EVERYTHING IS DIFFERENT! When I first did the show, I was just getting into acting in theatre that was not attached to any kind of music.  I had been doing a lot of musical theatre and opera, so this was my first shot at ‘straight theatre’.  I don’t even think that it occurred to me that I would have wanted to direct at that point.  I played Heisenberg when I acted in it.  Jody is such an amazing presence in the role and she makes all of these brilliant and strong choices with the character.  I didn’t have the tools or the confidence at the time to create a character like that, so it’s really delightful to be able to see a skilled actor revel in everything that the character has to offer!

 

 

Catch the show at Oddball Fermentables
  • Sunday, September 9 at 2:00pm
  • Monday, September 10 at 7:00pm
  • Tuesday, September 11 at 7:00pm
Actor Profile: Gregory Maus Steps into Stephen Hawking’s Life

Actor Profile: Gregory Maus Steps into Stephen Hawking’s Life

Gregory Maus is stepping on to the stage for the first time since…well, it’s been awhile. Learn a little more about him and why he is excited to bring Stephen Hawking (yes, that Stephen Hawking) to life in Uncertainty (Or, Imprecision) this September!
What made you audition for Uncertainty?
My friend Lucas suggested that I try out for the play. Presumably, he thought my stick-like physique and arrogant pedantry made me a good fit for Hawking.
How long have you been acting/involved in theater?
I mean, life is theater…man…you know?… As far as actual productions though, I did a few parts in church plays during high school ten years ago, but haven’t done it formally since then.
What do you do when you’re not rehearsing?
Mostly I procrastinate on getting anything done for my Ph.D. program, including playing tabletop and computer strategy games and memorizing lines.
What has been an unexpected challenge of this production?
Personally? Transportation. Based on the try-out location I foolishly assumed that rehearsals would be within biking distance for me. I have since had to parasitically prey off the kindness and generosity of my cast mates with cars.
What has been the most rewarding part of being in an MCCT show?
Getting to know my all-too-generous castmates has been delightful, whether chatting during breaks or on car rides.
Why should audiences come to see Uncertainty?
It’s the most hilarious rendition of dead drunk physicists commenting on ridiculously terrible dates that they’ll ever see. (Probably.)
What are your top three dream roles?
Myself: That would imply that I’ve done (or at least been involved with) something sufficiently significant and/or interesting that a play or movie exists about it, and I’m apparently still alive, healthy, and free to play it. Hannibal Lecter because creepy sociopathic geniuses are fun. And, of course, Alexander Hamilton, well-meaning and perhaps over-ambitious geniuses are also delightful and how can one pass up Miranda’s writing?
What is the best/worst thing about bringing Stephen Hawking to life?
What I really enjoy about playing Hawking (or at least Uncertainty‘s version of him) is this fun dichotomy between his starry-eyed wonder at the transcendent beauty of the cosmos, contrasted with his all-too-human pettiness born of deep insecurities. I suspect that the worst thing will be if people expect me to actually explain his theories, but despite my efforts and initial enthusiasm, I have yet to actually finish A Brief History of Time.
Make plans to see Uncertainty (Or, Imprecision) September 9-11 at Oddball Fermentables in Bloomington. Tickets go on sale August 15.
King Lear Cast Announcement

King Lear Cast Announcement

Monroe County Civic Theater’s Fall production of KING LEAR has a cast! And a wonderful one at that. Meet the players –

Lear – Roy Sillings
Fool – Martin Cusato
Kent – Steve Scott

Goneril – Nicole Hill
Albany – Cairril Adaire
Oswald – Eric P. Van Gucht

Regan – Jennifer Whitaker
Cornwall – Nic Newby

Cordelia – Gwen Livesay
France – Parker Jones
Burgundy – Phillip Addison

Gloucester – Bill Goveia
Edgar – Oliver Moss
Edmund – Jason Lopez

Doctor – Dianne Shewmaker
Old Man – Dan Heise
Curan – Ashton Webb

Various Attendants, Servants, etc – Ashton Webb and Justin Brown

King Lear will be performed October 12-21 at the Firebay in the Ivy Tech John Waldron Arts Center. We are still looking for tech crew for this show, including a Stage Manager. Interested? Email mcctlear@gmail.com.

Uncertainty (Or, Imprecision) Cast Announcement

Uncertainty (Or, Imprecision) Cast Announcement

Uncertainty (or Imprecision) by Nicholas Krohn, is a new comedic play about three friends who meet at a bar on the same night to provide moral support for each other as they embark on their respective online dating prospects for the evening. Along for the ride is the bartender supplying the trio with plenty of liquid courage as well as two well-known (and completely out of their respective dimensions) scientists supplying plenty of terrible advice for the trio of friends as they embark on their first physical meeting with the people they have been chatting with online. The dates themselves prove to be one disaster after another in this bizarre and madcap comedy that proves once and for all that dating is the worst, but we all may as well laugh about it.
Stan: Emily Bedwell
Stephen Hawking: Gregory Maus
Werner Heisenberg: Jody Black
Eric: Matt Fletcher
Allison: Jessica Joslin
Stacy: Heather Wesner
Mitchell: Lucas Kempe-Cook
Swan: Bill Goveia
Debra: Evangeline Mee
Uncertainty (or Imprecision) will be performed September 9-11 at Oddball Fermentables in Bloomington. Tickets will go on sale in early August! Don’t miss it!
Audition Announcement: King Lear

Audition Announcement: King Lear

Director: Steve Heise
Assitant Director: Jennifer Whitaker
Stage Manager: WE ARE LOOKING
Auditions will be held on:
July 14th, Saturday, 3-6pm, Room 214 Monroe County Public Library
July 15th, Sunday, 12:30-4:30pm, Auditorium Monroe County Public Library
*If you can’t make these days, please email  MCCTLear@gmail.com

We will have sides available and may ask you to read several. We may also ask that you read against different actors for different roles. No prepared materials necessary.

Be sure to have an idea of your conflicts, both recurring and single instance, for the period of August 5th, 2018 to October 21st, 2018.
Performances will be from October 12th to October 21st, 2018 at the Rose Firebay, locate in The Ivy Tech Waldron Arts Center.
Tickets on Sale Now for “The Show Must Go On: A Queen Cabaret”

Tickets on Sale Now for “The Show Must Go On: A Queen Cabaret”

Tickets are on sale now for next weekend’s The Show Must Go On: A Queen Cabaret!

Purchase Tickets to the Friday & Sunday show below. Saturday’s show is not ticketed (it’s outside), but donations will be collected.

Each night’s performance will benefit a different local organization. So come out, join the fun, and be prepared to bid on some auction items from local businesses and organizations.

June 29

July 1

Audition Announcement: Men and Women Needed for Uncertainty (Or, Imprecision)

Audition Announcement: Men and Women Needed for Uncertainty (Or, Imprecision)

What’s the play about?

Uncertainty (or Imprecision) by Nicholas Krohn, is a new comedic play about three friends who meet at a bar on the same night to provide moral support for each other as they embark on their respective online dating prospects for the evening.  Along for the ride, is the bartender supplying the trio with plenty of liquid courage, as well as two well-known (and completely out of their respective dimensions) scientists supplying plenty of terrible advice for the trio of friends as they embark on their first physical meeting with the people they have been chatting with online.  The dates themselves prove to be one disaster after another in this bizarre and madcap comedy that proves once and for all that dating is the worst, but we all may as well laugh about it.

Who are the characters?

  • Stan:  Owner of the bar called ‘Uncertainty’ where our story takes Place (This role has already been cast)
  • Professor Stephen Hawking: Male 30-60   Physicists have come to learn that all things that could have happened, actually did in a different dimension.  Taking this into consideration, this Stephen Hawking is actually middle-aged, well dressed, and wholly without a neuro-muscular disease.
  • Dr. Werner Heisenberg:  In this dimension, Heisenberg is actually a woman. (This Role has already been cast)
  • Eric:  Male Late20’s to Late 30’s. Fancies himself to be an amateur magician, if he could only get that basic card trick to actually work
  • Allison:  Female Late 20’s to Late 30’s. Confident, sexy, and a lesbian
  • Stacy: Female Late 20’s to Late 30’s. Conservative and sweet and just wants to settle down and be married already
  • Mitchell: Male Late 20’s to Late 30’s. Stacy’s date.  He does not go by ‘Mitch’ and he wears an excess of hair product and has some interesting and unexpected kinks in spite of being rather uptight.
  • Swan:  Male, any age. Allison’s date.  Purportedly is the ‘Indiana Jones of Gynecology’, but really just turns out to be a dude named Kurt Schwarzenheimer.
  • Debra:  Female, Late 20’s to Late 30’s. Eric’s date.  She is a complete woman of mystery…..because she goes through the date with a bag on her head and a purse with roughly 23 cans of mace attached to it.

What are the Show Dates?

 September 9th, 10th, 11th

 

When and Where are the Auditions?

Auditions will be held at the Monroe County Public Library over the course of two days:

June 16th 11am-2pm in meeting room 2A

June 17th 12pm-2pm in meeting room 1C

Contact Emily McGee at Emily.solt.mcgee@gmail.com to set up an audition appointment or with any questions you may have regarding the production.

What do I prepare for the Audition?

You will need to prepare three things for this audition.

  1. Please prepare the sides for the characters that you are interested in. Please also know that the director may ask you to read sides for other characters, so you may want to look over all the sides.
  2. Please prepare to tell a story of the worst date you have ever been on in two minutes or less.
  3. Please bring a resume and headshot if you have them. If you do not, no worries!  There will be forms to fill out at the audition and we will take a picture of you there if needed!

STEPHEN HAWKING

ALLISON’S SIDES

STACY and MITCHELL SIDES

SWAN SIDE

ERIC and DEBRA

 

Actor Profile: Mike Milam goes from MCCT Supporter to Cast Member in His Acting Debut

Actor Profile: Mike Milam goes from MCCT Supporter to Cast Member in His Acting Debut

After years of supporting MCCT behind the scenes, Mike Milam braves the stage as Alonso in The Tempest. We asked him about why he made the transition from proud supporter to actor, and how his knowledge of Shakespeare adds to this production of The Tempest.

How did you get involved with MCCT?

I became involved in MCCT because my daughter, Jennifer Whitaker, is on the board, and I and my wife, Pam, have been supporters for several years. Pam is also involved in MCCT matters, working on props, and, in fact, my grandson, William Whitaker, has played in several MCCT productions and in the present one.

How long have you been acting?

About a month. This is my maiden voyage. I cannot even recall being on stage in grammar school although I may have been once in that distant past.

What do you do when you aren’t rehearsing Shakespeare?

My day job is Associate Professor of Comparative Literature and Director of International Programs at the University of Indianapolis. After teaching ancient and modern drama, including the Bard, for a number of years, I decided to take a whack at Shakespeare, so to speak. I am on sabbatical this summer and next year, so after the Tempest, I will be reading, writing, working around the house, and relaxing for some time.

What has been the hardest part of this production?

Having taught Shakespeare in class, the language with which I am not unfamiliar proves not an encumbrance. However, speaking the lines is a challenge. I found out—and how sharp the point of this remembrance is!—that memorizing lines without speaking them aloud as one does the blocking is impossible.

What has been the most rewarding?

Seeing and being involved in making Shakespeare come alive on stage from the static existence of the page. When we study drama in class, we are concerned with structure, theme, historical context, language and such literary considerations. Being involved in performance has given me insights into what I teach that are exciting and revelatory.

Why should Bloomington audiences come out to see The Tempest?

Because we are going to knock their socks off! They shall weep! They shall laugh! They shall leave enlightened!

They shall leave cathartic! There will be moments of pathos. Acrobatics! Dionysian revelry. Levitation of levity! Tragedy merrily averted. Stunning visual effects. Maybe, just maybe, we shall collectively find out how the genius of tragedy and comedy are one as Socrates so tantalizingly suggests at the conclusion of The Symposium. Now, who would possibly want to miss that?

Come see Mike and the rest of the 2018 Shakespeare in the Park cast and crew May 31-June 3 at Waldron Hill Buskirk Park (formerly Third Street Park).

  • Thursday-Saturday shows are at 7:00pm, with a pre-show performance of Tempest in a Teacup at 6:45pm.
  • The Sunday matinee is at 3:00pm with a 2:45pm preshow.

As always, Shakespeare in the Park is free!

Actor Profile: As Ferdinand, Caleb Curtis Explores Bravery, Love and Loss

Actor Profile: As Ferdinand, Caleb Curtis Explores Bravery, Love and Loss

MCCT newcomer Caleb Curtis brings to life Ferdinand, the Prince of Naples, in The Tempest. We sat down with him before his MCCT debut to talk about dream roles, Ferdinand’s love and uncertainty, and what makes being a part of Shakespeare in the Park is really like.
How did you get involved with theater?
A friend of mine who was a part of Monroe County Civic Theater in the past heard that I was looking to be in a show before I went to Interlochen Camp of the Arts for the rest of the summer and suggested that I audition. So I did, and here I am!
How have you approached the role of Ferdinand?
Ferdinand is the Prince of Naples, and with that comes a massive amount of responsibility! I believe that Ferdinand is very reluctant to accept this position in life, and because of that has a supreme lack of confidence in himself and his abilities. Ariel mentions to Prospero that Ferdinand was the first to LEAP from the boat when it wrecked, and to me, that sounds like a man who is afraid. Throughout the course of the play, when Ferdinand speaks of himself, he is either building himself up to an amusing rate or tearing himself down, which I think supports the fact that he is very insecure. Miranda is not only the love of his life but through his love for her, he finds a strength that he never knew he had and she gives him the confidence that might help him one day accept his position in life.
What’s it like rehearsing each night in the park?
It allows me to absorb some vitamin D! In all seriousness, I really enjoy the ability to rehearse outside, considering most of my rehearsals take place in a cold dark theater. Sure, it gets hot sometimes, but the heat and the surroundings of the park really lend itself to this play! And for being in the middle of downtown Bloomington, this park is extremely beautiful!
What are your top three dream roles?
Edmond From A Long Day’s Journey Into Night, Christopher from the Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, and a tie between Ned Weeks from The Normal Heart and Prior from Angels in America.
Why should Bloomington audiences come out to “The Tempest”?
This production of The Tempest is extremely immersive! The space that we find ourselves in, the nature of the play, and the way our director Rory has blocked this show takes the play off the stage and puts it right in front of the audience! I think this is a timely play that tackles many important themes including love, abuse of power, displacement, dealing with feeling alone, and even facing death. And, you even get a good laugh once in awhile! This cast is really doing the best they can to make this a memorable version of this frequently done play, and I think the work we’ve put in shows!
What do you hope the audience takes away from this production?
I hope audiences are able to identify with some aspects of these characters and the quirks and fears that they have! I hope the audience is able to receive the needed message that this play provides that Shakespeare has wrapped in a bow of magic, charm, and humor.

Come see Caleb and the rest of the 2018 Shakespeare in the Park cast and crew May 31-June 3 at Waldron Hill Buskirk Park (formerly Third Street Park).

  • Thursday-Saturday shows are at 7:00pm, with a pre-show performance of Tempest in a Teacup at 6:45pm.
  • The Sunday matinee is at 3:00pm with a 2:45pm preshow.

As always, Shakespeare in the Park is free!

Designer Profile: Jacy Harper Brings The Tempest to Life Through Costume

Designer Profile: Jacy Harper Brings The Tempest to Life Through Costume

As opening night for The Tempest draws near, we caught up with Jacy Harper, our costume designer for the show.
You’re a student right now, what are you studying?
I am majoring in Theatre with a minor in education.
How did you get into theater?
I got into theatre when I was in 5th or 6th grade and got to see our high school perform Into the Woods. After that, I was dead set on being a part of that.
What sparked your interest in costuming?
When I was in 8th grade I got my first sewing machine from my aunt and I had always wanted to make my own clothes. However, when I got into high school I found that making elaborate costumes for cosplay is way more fun than ordinary clothing. And because I’m already involved in theater, I was waiting for my chance to work on costumes for a show.
Do you have any favorite inspirations that contributed to your designs?
I feel that for this show specifically, I took a lot of inspiration from nature, as cliche as that sounds. I’ve been really obsessed with people/creatures mixed with Earth. After talking about color palettes, I thought this would be a good show to pull that into. Especially with the characters Caliban and Ariel.
Off of that, do you have any favorite pieces in this production?
With that said I think that Caliban, Ariel, and the Goddess costumes are my favorite pieces along with Prospero’s coral ruff.
Anything you don’t want the audience to miss?
I don’t want the audience to miss the Bloomington logo on the back of Prospero’s cloak.
How do think this show will connect to the Bloomington community?
I think that this show is very connecting because we have people of all ages and backgrounds in the show itself and we invite people of all ages and backgrounds to see the show as well and have aspects that everyone will enjoy. Especially with the children putting on the Tempest in a teacup. I also think that having a dementia-friendly performance is really great for the community.

Come see Jacy’s handiwork and the rest of the 2018 Shakespeare in the Park cast and crew May 31-June 3 at Waldron Hill Buskirk Park (formerly Third Street Park).

  • Thursday-Saturday shows are at 7:00pm, with a pre-show performance of Tempest in a Teacup at 6:45pm.
  • The Sunday matinee is at 3:00pm with a 2:45pm preshow.

As always, Shakespeare in the Park is free!