Books for Me, Theatre for You?

“Snowcaps Near Denver” - photo by Bryan Siders 

For the next several days I will be at the American Library Association’s Midwinter Meeting in Denver, Colorado.  I am a member of the Alex Award committee, which recognizes ten books that were published for adults in the past year but which have special appeal to teen readers as well.  We have been reading all year.  We have to make our final decisions this weekend.

What does that have to do with theatre?  Nothing, and usually I do try to keep my day job separate from this blog.  However, I wanted to let you know why I would not be seeing any Indianapolis theatre this weekend.

If I were going to be home this weekend, I would:

  • a) Go see “Fiddle Shticks” at 10 pm tonight (Friday) at Comedy Sportz on Mass Ave. I saw the Three Dollar Bill Comedy Company perform their shticks for a second time last Friday, and enjoyed the show even more than the first time. The sexy librarian wii sketch was still in the show – I told Will afterwards that they better keep that one for the whole six weeks! – and there were several new ones related to current (and I mean as of a nano-second ago) events. I admired the way the writers of the group tied the sketches to each other in surprising little ways. Their collection of publicity photos is a hoot in itself. I could not figure out how to link to it directly, but here is a link to their website.  Click on “photos” and tell me if you could have chosen just one to post here.
  • b) Go see “To Kill a Mockingbird” at the Indiana Repertory Theatre. It opens tonight. If I had a publicity photo for it I would have used it with this post, but ah, well. I appreciate the IRT’s willingness to let me use my media passes later in the run. I am really looking forward to seeing this show, and not only because some of my favorite actors are in it. I re-read TKAM, the novel, a couple years ago with my friend Connie because we were preparing to lead a book discussion using it. I loved the book much, much more than I had when it was an assignment in high school. I’m intrigued by the idea of seeing it acted out, especially by a professional theatre.
  • c) Head out to Greenfield, east of Indy, to see “A Few Good Men” as presented by the new Ricks-Weil Theater Company at the H.J.Ricks Center for the Arts. Thom Johnson, the man who directed it out at Westfield last year and who stars as Colonel Jessup in this community theatre production, tells me that “The show will last at least 2 1/2 hours and is considered an adult, military drama. We are using the words exactly as they were written by Aaron Sorkin before it became a hit movie.” The show runs January 23-31. Friday and Saturdays are at 7:30 p.m. and the Sunday performance on the 25th is at 3 p.m.  For more info, check the Hancock County Visitors’ Bureau website.
  • d) Go see “Closer Than Ever” by Footlite Musicals at the Hedback Theatre and make an extra donation. This is an Encore show, and since I am an Encore judge, I am not supposed to write about it. However, last Friday night was the only night I could see it. When I arrived at the theatre, the show had just been cancelled because a water pipe had burst and cast and crew were busy hauling costumes and other items out of harm’s way. Footlite added an extra performance last night, but I was already in Denver. I was very disappointed! I had been determined not to miss a single Encore show this season. But what are you going to do? Stuff happens some times. I also feel sorry for the theatre.  I hope the Footlite people get what they need from their fans to repair the pipes!  In the meantime, the show is back up and runs through this Sunday.
  • e) Pretend I am the theatrical equivalent of the Drudge Report and get the scoop on if and why “Cabaret” has been cancelled at the American Cabaret Theatre this spring. Tell me it isn’t so! I had been really looking forward to that show, too.

Instead of doing any of this, I will be reading and discussing Alex nominees at several meetings of the committee.  I love this work, too, so I am not complaining!  The winners will be announced at a press conference early Monday morning.   After that, I will hit some other, public sessions of the “Best Books for Young Adults” committee and make the rounds of the publishers’ exhibits, hoping to score some exciting new ARCs (Advance Reader Copies) to mail home and share with the teens at my library.

I have not forgotten about writing up my experience of Motoko’s storytelling or Dance Kaleidoscope’s “Magical Mystery Tour,” either.  That may have to wait until I get home.  I apologize for the delay.

Okay, now I’m off to an Alex committee meeting…

Hope Baugh –

2 thoughts on “Books for Me, Theatre for You?”

  1. Hope,

    May I be so bold as to also point out to your readership that DON’T DRESS FOR DINNER at Beef & Boards is a great diversion from the cold and snowy weather. I know you have been unable to attend due to a really busy schedule (this is the second show I have been at the Beef that you have had to skip….not that I am keeping count or anything), but the show has developed into a fun and fast paced laugh a minute. We have been well received by the audiences and have only two weeks left. DON’T DRESS FOR DINNER closes February 8th. A shameless promtion perhaps, but I do feel that the little engine that could (and has for 35 plus years) is a very good option for theatre goers this weekend or any weekend. Beef & Boards….now that’s dinner-tainment!

    Have fun in Denver, and I hope you can find a way to squeeze us in for CATS.

  2. Eddie! How could I have forgotten to mention your show at Beef’n’Boards?? I have heard from others that it is hilarious. I am truly sorry that I have to miss it. Break a leg with the rest of your run!

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