Theatre Project expands lineup

35th season to have 8 shows

Theater column

July 20, 2006|By J. WYNN ROUSUCK | J. WYNN ROUSUCK,SUN THEATER CRITIC

Theatre Project, which bills itself as "Baltimore's year-round fringe festival," will celebrate its 35th anniversary this season, and it's doing so in grand style -- by expanding its subscription lineup from six to eight shows. In addition, three of those shows -- a play about Einstein, a "circus opera" and a clown piece -- will make up a new kids' subscription.

"We have generally been presenting as many as 25 to 30 different productions in the course of the year, and it made sense to go ahead and increase those offerings to the subscribers. It better reflects the amount of activity that's going on here," Theatre Project producing director Anne Cantler Fulwiler said in announcing the 2006-2007 season.

Commenting on the children's series, the mother of two added, "As a parent, I know I always am looking for entertaining and intelligent cultural opportunities to share with my kids. These are three adult shows that ages 8 and above can fully enjoy."

Here's a look at the full subscription lineup, which includes works new, old and unexpected (this is the Theatre Project after all):

Bonhoeffer (Sept. 21-Oct. 1). Last fall, South African playwright and performer Peter Krummeck brought his one-man show here for four nonsubscription performances. Fulwiler found Krummeck's depiction of theologian and Nazi victim Dietrich Bonhoeffer to be such a "beautiful, moving work," she invited him back.

Self At Hand (Oct. 12-22). Towson University graduate Christopher Eaves returns home with his New York-based company, Eavesdrop, performing a futuristic multimedia "post-tragic trilogy," which uses text by poet Jack Hanley.

Einstein's Dreams (It's about time ...) (Oct. 27-29). Baltimorean Lorraine L. Whittlesey has created a musical/opera based on Alan Lightman's 1993 novel. A young Einstein dreams about the nature of time in Whittlesey's multimedia work, produced in collaboration with McDaniel College's Chamber Music on the Hill.

Acis and Galatea (Jan. 19-28). Peabody Institute alum Tim Nelson's Ignoti dei Opera will perform Handel's opera with a troupe that includes acrobats, jugglers and other circus acts. This will be the company's fourth production at the Theatre Project.

Peaches (Feb. 8-18). Inspired by Nina Simone's song "Four Women," this examination of stereotypes of African-American women has had two short runs at the Theatre Project. Produced by Progress Theatre Co. of New York, Peaches will be performed in repertory with the company's newest piece, 'Membuh, about a group of adults in their 20s.

June Bride (March 8-18). Philadelphia playwright, performer and juggler Sara Felder recounts the tale of her Orthodox Jewish lesbian wedding in this comic one-woman show.

Siddown (April 12-22). Le Petomane Theatre Ensemble of Louisville, Ky., presents this work for two clowns, (husband and wife Gregory Maupin and Abigail Bailey Maupin), featuring everything from go-go dancing to operetta.

The eighth show has not been finalized. The problem isn't finding another production, Fulwiler said, it's narrowing down the options.

Fulwiler has, however, selected six shows that are not part of the subscription series but will be available through single ticket sale: the High Zero Festival (Sept. 14-17), the eighth annual celebration of improvised, experimental music; Demonic (Nov. 2-5), a piece on American memory written and performed by University of Maryland, Baltimore County professor Robert Allen and Antoinette Lefarge; Agents + Assets (Nov. 9-12), a work about the drug trade in America, created by a company called the Los Angeles Poverty Department; The Rape of Lucretia (Feb. 1-4), Peabody Chamber Opera's production of the Benjamin Britten opera; Lost & Clown'd (March 20-25), a movement piece for hearing and deaf audiences by Maryland's Quest Productions; and Sense of Wonder (April 7), a one-woman show about biologist and writer Rachel Carson, written and performed by Kaiulani Lee.

Also, Baltimore's Run of the Mill Theater will be in residence throughout the season, presenting several shows, beginning with Variations on Fear, Aug. 10-27, a collaborative look at the theme of fear.

Subscriptions go on sale Aug. 1. The eight-play season costs $80. The Kids' Subscriptions -- Einstein's Dreams, Acis and Galatea and Siddown -- costs $30. For more information call 410-752-8558 or visit theatrepro ject.org.

Juggle this

Baltimore's new Street Entertainers Commission is seeking musicians, jugglers and others to perform in public spaces (other than Harborplace). Applications must be postmarked by Monday with a $25 application fee. Auditions are scheduled for 2 p.m. July 29 at the Broadway Plaza in Fells Point. For applications and information call 410-605-0452 or visit promotionandarts.com.

j.wynn.rousuck@baltsun.com

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