MMSC is to be congratulated both for choice of play and performance.~Woodstock Times

Catching Our Breath

The entrance to the elizabethan stage / allen pavilion. Ashland, August 1, 2012.

Too much to see and do. Too little time to write a daily post. So, here is the quick run-down of the past two days of family, food, hanging with the lighting and sound guys and some serious theatre-going at OSF. On the theatrical menu for this day? Animal Crackers with the zany Marx Brothers on stage at the Bowmer Theatre.

Green Show Banners, On The Bricks, Ashland, August 1, 2012

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Early morning coffee with Chris, Bob and Liz (and for a brief moment our SoundGuy Josh before he had to go to work) at the Starbucks just off the OSF campus. Everybody who is anybody stops there eventually. So, we thought we would too.

Then a walk down Main Street to take some photos for the blog,

And then on to the OSF campus to take more photos for the blog.

And finally, back to the co-op to shop for dinner items. On the menu? Grilled veggies and chicken caesar salad. Thanks to Liz and Jacqui for the grilling and the dinner prep. Dinner guests included Bob, Chris, Liz, Josh (SoundGuy), Jacqui, and eventually Noah (LightingGuy).

The evening’s entertainment was Animal Crackers in the Bowmer Theatre. Oh, those zany Marx Brothers. Funny, fast-paced. And almost totally out-of-control. On the night that we saw the performance there was a special unscheduled on-stage appearance by Henry V (John Tufts) who helped Captain Spaulding (Groucho), The Professor (Harpo), and Ravelli (Chico) present an official St. Crispy Chicken Day chicken to a very surprised audience member. Fortunately we escaped all of the audience participation segments unscathed (and as non-participants.)

Following the performance we met up with SoundGuy (Josh) and LightingGuy (Noah) for a drink at the favorite company watering-hole, Martino’s. Found many of the AC cast members there, watching the Olympics and blowing off steam after the show. Ran into another of our favorite OSF folks, Gwen Turos. Gwen is the Stage Manager for Animal Crackers and has been a friend for many years – pre-OSF, if you can believe it. She is also married to Michael Maag, OSF’s Lighting Manager and another of our great good friends out here.

Good day. Good bye to Wednesday, August 1, 2012.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Another day filled with food, family, and a double-header of theatre.

Breakfast at Dragon-Fly with Josh, Jacqui and Liz. Bob had breakfast with our friend Tony Heald, but they sat at a separate table. Wonder what they were talking about? We can only guess.

Matinee of Party People with our very own SoundGuy Josh running the front-of-house soundboard. Really, really good. Here’s a bit of the OSF description: “… a high-energy mix of theatre, poetry, jazz, blues, hip-hop, boleros and salsa as UNIVERSES digs into the story and legacy of an American revolution. Four decades ago, the Black Panthers and Puerto Rican Young Lords were young activists providing food and health care in their impoverished communities while in a desperate struggle to survive the systematic dismantling of their movements. Now they are 60-somethings untangling a traumatic past and an unclear future. In ensemble, OSF actors and UNIVERSES toggle between then and now in this meticulously researched, compelling work of fiction.” Wow. Just wow. Did we mention that we loved it?

Dinner at Pasta Piatti with Josh, Bob, Chris and Liz. Discussing Party People over red wine and mushroom risotto.

All-too-short visit on the back deck with Noah and his girls (and Buster), and Jacqui.

And then on to the second show of the day. (Ah, Ashland.) On the menu for the evening? The very ambitious Medea, Macbeth, Cinderella. OSF refers to MMC as a “A three-ring tour de force”  Here’s their description: “A jealous wife sends an unthinkable message to her cheating husband. A lord, urged on by his aggressive lady, murders his king. A mistreated stepdaughter engages with magic for love and happiness. Three plays from two millennia of populist theatre—Greek tragedy, Elizabethan drama and American musical comedy. .  separate stories of ambition interweave into one revelatory whole that builds to an unexpected climax.” Another opportunity to see our SoundGuy in action, mixing all of those actors as they play out the three separate stories, playing out simultaneously. Yikes! Good job Josh. A visually stunning production as well. Beautiful to just sit back and watch.

SoundGuy at the MMC board. Totally rogue photo, taken by sister Liz, at the back of the Bowmer Theatre, without the knowledge of the usher, on August 2, 2012.

Back to our little home away from home. Late. Tired, but happy to be here.

Tomorrow? No scheduled theatre. Time with the family. Lunch with old friends. Aware of how quickly the time is passing. Stay tuned.

Posted in Animal Crackers, Ashland, Family, General, MMC, OSF, Party People Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,

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