After seven months in New York, Evansville actress and director Kensington Blaylock-Eck has returned home to re-energize her Think Pink! Productions in Evansville Civic Theatre's new Underground at the Annex studio theater in North Park Shopping Center. She'll relaunch the company with Tom Grif-fin's "The Boys Next Door," a play Blaylock-Eck says uses humor and compassion to explore the world of "four mentally challenged men who live in a communal residence under the watchful eye of a sincere, but increasingly despairing social worker."
The nine-member cast includes veteran Think Pink! and Civic Theatre players along with some new faces. The goal, said Blaylock- Eck, is to bring together experienced and less experienced actors of all ages, and "to create an ensemble that is cooperative, generous and open to direction." Think Pink! productions rely upon volunteers to help with everything from fundraising to scenic construction to costumes to performance.
Blaylock-Eck formed the troupe in the summer of 2009, staging productions first at the D'Alto Studio of Performing Arts, and later at Civic Theatre's former Annex in Washington Square Mall, where the company's last effort
"The Rocky Horror Show," played last fall.
She and her husband, actor Brandon Eck, returned to Evansville in July after seven months working in theater in New York. Both of them were getting parts in plays, she said, "but we missed what we'd been doing back here. We knew what we wanted to do, so we came back."
The couple is pleased to work with Civic Theatre again, in the new Annex, she said, and both look forward to playing in Civic's main stage production of "Les Miserables," opening Oct. 18.
"Think Pink! is back with a brand new breath of life," she said.
"The Boys Next Door" will play a 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday and at 2 p.m. Sept. 15 in Civic's Annex in North Park Shopping Center. Tickets are $10, available at the door or in advance by calling 812-456-8719.
It sounds like a stretch, but the Lincoln Amphitheater's promotion for the National Players' touring production of William Shakespeare's "Macbeth" may actually prove to be more than advertiser's hype.
Promotional material for the production, set to run Friday and Saturday in Lincoln State Park's covered amphitheater, call the Shakespearean tragedy "President Lincoln's favorite play."
Turns out the Library of Congress backs up that claim, using Lincoln's own words. Library documents include a letter to Shakespearean actor James Hackett in which Lincoln wrote: "I think nothing equals 'Macbeth.' It is wonderful."
The citation goes on to note that Lincoln "often entertained guests by quoting his favorite passages from the play," and that he did so just days before his assassination while attending another play, "Our American Cousin," in Ford's Theater.
The National Players' production will use the original Elizabethan language, but set the story of unbridled, unprincipled, murderous ambition in the industrial world, to give it a more contemporary feel.
The touring company, created in Catholic University of America's drama department, has toured productions since 1949, taking theater to more than 2.5 million people around the country.
The Lincoln State Park performances will begin at 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday in the 1,500-seat covered amphitheater. Tickets are $19 for adults, $16 for military personnel and those 55 and older and 7 to 21 years old, and $6 for those 6 and younger. A 6:30 p.m., preperformance meal is available if ordered at least three days in advance.
For more information, visit www.LincolnAmphitheatre.org or call 800-264-4223.
Arts Beat looks on the scene and behind the scenes of Evansville's cultural landscape. Contact Roger McBain at email@example.com or call 812-464-7520
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