In the Wings

The Newsletter of The Concord Players
August 2014                                          Robert Runck, Editor


The Concord Players will be holding auditions for their fall production of

The Matchmaker. Appointment time slots will be at 7, 8 and 9 p.m. on both August 25 and 26 (callbacks August 27 at 7 p.m.). For more information, go to the Players website and click on "Auditions for The Matchmaker."


According to Dolly Levi, "Money, if you'll pardon the expression, should be like manure, it should be spread around to encourage young things to grow." Dolly is the central character in Thornton Wilder's farce The Matchmaker, scheduled to open on The Concord Players stage Nov. 7-22. Wilder lifted Levi's manure line directly from a character in Moliere's The Miser, written 270 years before Wilder's play. In fact, Wilder's plot and all the characters are drawn from his prolific reading of centuries of literature dating back to the Greeks and Romans. The foolish miser, the cunning femme, the wide-eyed ingĂ©nue, the servants, noble or buffoon, are all recurring players in a narrative of the folly of human behavior. 

Wilder's original version, The Merchant of Yonkers (1937) was based on a Viennese play by Johann Nestrol, and his play was based on British playwright John Oxenford's A Day Well Spent, written in 1835. (Yonkers

 was a small farming town, and later a village, founded in 1646 by Dutch settler Adriaen Vand Donck. Donck held the title "Jonkheer," Dutch for "young gentleman", later transformed into the village name.) The Merchant of Yonkers

 was a flop, but with a new director, re-worked script, and Broadway star Ruth Gordon as Dolly Levi, the play re-opened in 1957 as The Matchmaker, to rave reviews in Boston, and critical success on Broadway. And, as if that weren't enough repetition of a single plot, The Matchmaker itself was transformed into one of Broadway's most successful musicals, Hello Dolly, originally starring Carol Channing. The Matchmaker
is pure farce, with mistaken identities, cross-dressing, multiple doors, and people hiding in and out of furniture and under tables.  "The pleasures of farce," said Wilder, "...are those of development, pattern, and logic."  But playwright Neil Simon knows about the cathartic value of good farce: "At the final curtain, the audience must be as spent as the actors who are now on oxygen support." Bring the oxygen.

 Because we have had quick sellouts of past shows, we encourage you to take advantage of this great subscription price now. Go to the Players website today to sign up for a $55.00 subscription to our 2014-2015 season: The Matchmaker by Thorton Wilder; The Desk Set by William Marchant, and  Kiss Me Kate, the Cole Porter musical adaptation of Shakespeare's Taming of the Shrew. Opening Night ticket holders are invited to a 7 p.m. reception with hors d'oeuvres, drinks and desserts.

The Concord Players just received an anonymous donation of $500 for a very specific purpose. The donors requested that another wireless headset be purchased for the backstage crew. Paul Gill has promised to purchase it soon, so that it can be used during rehearsals and performances of The Matchmaker this fall. We are very grateful for such a thoughtful gift.


The Concord Players need someone who can dazzle the stage at 51 Walden St. in Concord for their fall production of The Matchmaker. Seeking a lighting designer/light board operator. We also need a sound designer/soundboard operator.  Production runs Nov. 7, 8, 14, 15, 16, 21 and 22. All interested should contact producer Corinne Kinsman at corinne.kinsman@gmail.com or Paula McNabb at gaels1974@aol.com


 Maria and Sir Toby confront Malvolio

Audience reaction was very positive to our summer production of Twelfe Night, by William Shakespeare. One fan said it was the best he had ever seen. An especially able cast, headlined by Players Mike Lague, Ed Bernard, and the husband-wife team of Elizabeth and Bill Horemann, gave its best to one of Shakespeare's prime comedies, earning a full page review with photos in the Concord Journal. Excerpts: "The production translated the script's absurdity with flair.  A dozen cast and crew took a three-hour play and halved it, weeding out unnecessary roles, saving the signature lines and using their voices to tell a rollicking tale of tangled love and mistaken identity that ended with Shakespeare's trademark comedic denouement: wedding promises and a smiling public."

 Sir Toby advises Sir Andrew on challenge.



fast wheel Our very own Concord Traveling Players, Dorothy Schecter, Tillie Sweet, Sandy Armstrong, Birgitta Knuttgen, Rik Pierce, Tom Viers, Tom Ruggles, Michael Henchman and Robert Runck, continue to voyage from Retirement Home to Council on Aging and back, performing skits for folks who don't otherwise get to see live theatre. Their next dates are: Wednesday, Sept. 10, Stonebridge at Burlington, 50 Greenleaf Way, Burlington, MA, 2:30; Thursday, October 2, St. Irene's Catholic Church, 181 East St., Carlisle at 12:30; and Wednesday,  Nov. 19, St Matthews Methodist Church, 435 Central Street, Acton, MA, 1:00.

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