An Honest Theatrical Playbill.
BY DANIEL FALK
[Originally published June 13, 2012.]
The Obscure Regional Theatre Of Somewhere Other Than New York or London
proudly presents another fucking revival of…
SOME GODDAMN RODGERS
AND HAMMERSTEIN MUSICAL
By Rodgers and Hammerstein
As a young director I always promised myself I’d never be responsible for the further flogging of this dead horse. Yet here I am, directing it for the fourth goddamn time in twenty years. Times are tough and I’ve got to take the work I can. So if you went to theater school with me, and are judging me half as much as I judge myself, then fuck you—at least I have a job.
I’ve chosen to set the show in a post-apocalyptic dystopia. Why, you may ask? Because why not? If I didn’t do something different with this tired whore of a show I’d probably have blown my brains out. I could make up some bullshit about how a post-apocalyptic dystopia informs on the motifs and symbolism in the show, but we all know that I just put a bunch of production concepts into a hat and this piece of junk is what I pulled out. Life is arbitrary and we don’t always get what we want or deserve. Deal with it.
I chose to have a bare bones cast, a pre-recorded orchestra, and a nonexistent set because I believe it helps heighten the show’s themes. Just kidding. It’s because there’s no money. Enjoy the fucking show.
— Jaded Director Who Just Wishes He’d Die
Recent Theatre School Graduate is thrilled to be performing in this now culturally irrelevant relic of live theater’s glory days. He recently graduated from some theater school that keeps pumping out actors despite the fact that there’s no goddamn work and for some reason still offers no classes on the most useful skill an actor needs, which is how to carry three plates of food with two hands to tables of jerks who leave lousy tips, where he performed in a bunch of pretentious shit you’ve never heard of. As a recent theater school grad, he is the only member of the company who is not a member of the Actor’s Equity, which means he will be paid next to nothing and asked to do all the dangerous stuff like moving poorly built set pieces and juggling flaming chainsaws and devouring raw chicken on stage. He looks forward to a career performing in lousy musical revues at all the country’s worst dinner theaters. He would like to thank his mom and dad who, despite begging him not to go to theater school have still graciously covered his rent for the last four months as he pursues his idiotic fucking dreams of getting paid to pretend to be other people.
Old Man Actor Who Takes Himself Way Too Seriously is excited (read: suicidal) to be performing in an obscure regional theater in the middle of nowhere. Years ago he performed with Sir Lawrence Olivier in a production of MacBeth on the West End (a credit he’s been riding for years) and has since been inexplicably spiraling downwards from prestigious classical theater festivals, to broke outdoor Shakespeare productions, to his current lifetime low at this theater. He manages to eke out a living teaching classical theater workshops where his students were impressed with his “illustrious career” until the night they found him weeping inside his car after class.
Actress Who Fucking Sells Fucking Arbonne is super pumped to be part of such a wonderful cast of people to whom she can try to sell Arbonne (NOT A PYRAMID SCHEME) skin care products. You may have seen her playing character roles around theaters in your area, on television ten years ago as a dead hooker on Law & Order, and at your local community college where she was trying to get a real estate agent license before she discovered how wonderful it is to drive away all your friends by pestering them to buy lotions, body wash, and shampoo from Arbonne. She also has tried to supplement her pathetic earnings as an actor by making ugly jewelry, as a photographer, massage therapist, life coach, personal trainer, and dog walker. She would like to thank Arbonne for being the best
cult company ever, and you for buying Arbonne products and/or joining her “team” of Arbonne sales people which then feeds into her profits. (AGAIN: NOT A PYRAMID SCHEME.)
THANKS TO OUR SPONSORS
We would like to thank the generous support of our dwindling body of private donors. Without your assistance we wouldn’t have been able to drag the slow death of this theater to such agonizing lengths. You help prove that just because our demise is inevitable, it doesn’t have to be next Tuesday.
We would especially like to thank some of our key corporate partners who continue tossing us their spare change, not because they care about the arts, but because somebody there feels bad for us and the life choices we made. Plus they get tax credits. Not that they really pay that much in taxes anyways. Assholes.
Finally, we would like to mention the government granting bodies at the municipal, state, and federal level for, year after year, cutting our funding so that more money can be put towards useful things like bailing out banks, investment firms, and automakers or towards killing people in a country most of us can’t even point out on a map. Thanks, fuckheads!
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