The Arkansas Repertory Theatre presents TheatreSquared’s 2012 Arkansas New Play Fest on Thursday, May 17 and Friday, May 18 at The Oxford American building at 1300 Main Street.
Arkansas New Play Fest features professional staged readings. Each script is rehearsed, staged and performed by professional artists, script in hand, for the public and playwright.
Following each reading, there will be a talk back session with the playwright and the cast.
Thursday, May 17
7 p.m. Uprooted by Clinnesha Dillon Sibley
9 p.m. The Ballad Of Rusty and Roy by Troy And Jonny Schremmer
Friday, May 18
7 p.m. The Spiritualist by Robert Ford
9 p.m. The Football Project by Samuel Brett Williams
by Clinnesha Dillon Sibley
A richly drawn treatment of a timeless scenario by an award-winning Arkansas playwright. What happens when long-separated siblings reunite after the death of a parent? When successful film actress Venus Kettle returns to Indianola, Mississippi, to her mother’s “home going,” she is greeted by her sisters with a wide range of emotions, from enthusiastic glee to cold-shoulder resentment. In the meantime the play follows the parallel story of Venus’s brother, who is incarcerated in a facility in Pine Bluff, Arkansas. Uprooted is moving tribute to the redemptive power of family.
THE FOOTBALL PROJECT
by Samuel Brett Williams
November, 1998: a high school football team boarded a bus to travel to play in the state championship game. The entire town came out to see the team off—but the bus never left. One third-string player who played for mere seconds in the previous game forged his grades and caused the team to be disqualified from the championship. The town’s response was unprecedented. There were death threats, thoughts of suicide, vandalism and then a surprising amount of goodwill and even a bit of unexpected heroism. A snapshot of a town in crisis, examining one of the rare places that the ordinary and the epic, the petty and the profound collide: high school football.
by Robert Ford
TheatreSquared Artistic Director Robert Ford brings The Spiritualist back to the Arkansas New Play Festival for a second year of development, adding new revisions and, for the first time, original music. Inspired by true events, this comedic drama introduces Rosemary Dunn, an English widow who cooks for the school lunch service and communes with the spirits of dead composers. When an enterprising American reporter tries to unmask the self-proclaimed psychic as a fraud, he finds there may be more at play than simple musical sleight-of-hand.
THE BALLAD OF RUSTY AND ROY
by Troy and Jonny Schremmer
This new play with live, original music, follows the story of two half-brothers, both musicians with roots in Texas who have found their way to New York City along starkly divergent paths. One has an enthusiastic following on the New York music scene, the other among toddlers at the neighborhood church playgroup where he works. Circumstances reunite the two brothers, but a deeply troubled past involving a boyhood road trip threatens to tear them apart once again. Featuring songs – and performances – by Dusty Brown, who himself has a burgeoning career as a singer-songwriter in New York, an early version of The Ballad of Rusty and Roy was featured at the New York Fringe Festival.
Tickets are $7 per show or $20 for a two-day pass to all four readings.