logoIn the Wings
The Newsletter of The Concord Players
May 2011                         Robert Runck, Editor
DRS photo
Craig Howard as Andre and Eric Hanselman as Lawrence stroll across the spectacular Doug Cooper-Allen Bantly set for Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. (Photo by Rik Pierce.) To see a slide show of scenes, go HERE.
The Players have successfully placed an upgraded sound system in the theater at 51 Walden, and it is already being used for the current musical, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. The new system uses current technology to fill the theater with a rich, full spectrum of sound, and cover every seat in the house. It uses modern line-array speakers that project the sound of the orchestra, the on-stage dialogue, and sound effects with precision. Part of the new equipment is an audio processor that allows state-of-the-art mixing, and the precise "house mix" to balance the sound. The Concord Players can now offer this state-of-the-art system to the sound professionals who support our shows. This is all part of an effort to bring the best quality entertainment to our audiences. We also want to thank the many supporters who have helped fund this project, Bruce Gray for his support during the installation, and Boston Light & Sound for their professional expertise.

The Executive Committee of the Players Board of Directors recently attended a seminar on "Building a Board that Works," sponsored by the Middlesex Savings Charitable Foundation and presented by Andy Robinson. Through a series of open
discussions and workbook exercises, the attendees were able to identify a number of areas for improvement of the overall work flow and communication in the board in order to foster better results. By having a more efficient and better organized board, we will be in a better position to improve the quality of the shows we produce and enhance the overall impact that The Concord Players have on the community at large.

Ed Bernard along with Bill and Elizabeth Hoermann will appear in Arsenic and Old Lace at the Cannon Theatre, directed by Larry Lickteig. The show opens on Thursday May 19, and runs for three consecutive weekends. For info, go to www.thecannontheatre.com
Backstopping the fine perfomances was a complex and interesting set for Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. Set designer Doug Cooper, working with construction head Allen Bantly, created huge left and right wings that come up from down in the green room and totally change the set. Opening night, the first elevations got a major round of applause. The orchestra, directed by Mario Cruz, was positioned in the back of the stage, and the bandstand in front of them consisted of a railing set with seahorses etched in lucite panels, with submerged lights to make each panel glow orange.
      Opening Night drew more than 250 ticket holders who attended a French Riviera style reception, with champagne, hors d'oeuvres, and dessert. The ticket sales people, the servers and front of house wore sparkling top hats, and there were several in tuxedos to match the elegance on stage. These opening night receptions for ticket holders have become a reunion for long-term Concord Players subscribers, and actors from theater companies all over New England.

Typically, the play/director selection committee reviews about 135 shows on a spreadsheet of shows that the committee developed two years ago. From that list the committee might isolate about 36 for consideration. Simultaneously, the committee sends a letter to some 85 directors, soliciting their suggestions of plays they would like to see on the Walden stage, as well as plays they would like to direct. Based on their responses, the committee looks for shows that enjoy strong support from them. For example, eight directors placed next fall's musical at the top of their list. (Because of rights restrictions, we cannot name that show until June.)

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Concord Players | 51 Walden St | Concord | MA | 01742