Our 25th Anniversary Season

This blog post might read like a press release because, well, it’s a press release.  But don’t hold that against us! PLAN-B THEATRE COMPANY ANNOUNCES FIVE EXCITING WORLD PREMIERES FOR ITS 25TH ANNIVERSARY, 2015/2016 SEASON Award-winning theatre celebrates a quarter century of success with a rich lineup of world premieres celebrating music, diversity and human relationships. (Salt Lake City, UT) – Continuing our unique legacy of producing new plays by Utah playwrights, Plan-B Theatre Company announces its 25th season with a slate of world premieres. The season offers a peek into the mind of a madman and the music that created it, a haunting radio play, a humorous look at the dreariness of holiday retail, a journey through relationships past and future, and Plan-B’s first-ever new musical that features a housewife who dreams of something more. “Plan-B is committed to telling stories from a local point of view. Our 25th season takes that a step further, exploring how comfortable we feel inside our own narratives,“ says Jerry Rapier, Plan-B’s producing director. The season begins October 18, 2015, and runs through April 10, 2016. Season tickets, only $70 (a 20% savings) are available now at Plan-B’s website. THE KREUTZER SONATA by Eric Samuelsen October 18–November 9, 2015 (Also November 4, 2015, at New York’s United Solo Theatre Festival) The season opens with a harrowing exploration of the mind of a murderer, of a man driven mad by Beethoven’s music. “Music, like marriage, is but a violence and a falsehood,” says the madman (Robert Scott Smith) and both torment him to the point of no return. This cautionary tale is interwoven with a...

Mark Fossen on juggling two wives in PILOT PROGRAM

Mark Fossen has previously appeared in Plan-B’s THE ALIENATION EFFEKT, EXPOSED, AMERIGO, THE SCARLET LETTER, CLEARING BOMBS and the Script-In-Hand Series readings of THE NORMAL HEART, 8 and MARRY CHRISTMAS. I’ve had the chance to play some wonderfully challenging roles in my time with Plan-B: a prizewinning economist, a machiavellian schemer, a genocidist, and more. Who would think that one of the most challenging characters to inhabit would be a man who lives a few miles from where I do now, is my age, and is married to a woman who looks suspiciously like my real-life wife? PILOT PROGRAM is about a lot of things: polygamy, loneliness, family. However, the biggest step for me was the question it asks about what you would do for your faith. I am not a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, and never have been. I grew up in areas of the country where the Church is not prominent, and the first members of the Church I think I knew were when I met my wife’s family. Since moving to Utah, I understand the basics, and am familiar with a lot of the terminology, theology, and culture. But, of course, understanding is very different than a lived experience. My biggest hurdle was in the very basic premise-before-the-premise of PILOT PROGRAM: “What if you were called to serve in the restoration of polygamy?” While “polygamy” is the eye-catcher in that sentence, it was the “called” that was my biggest challenge, the thing I could not understand. While I can imagine the personal religious revelation that could inspire polygamy, I cannot imagine...

April Fossen on polygamy, monogamy and PILOT PROGRAM

April Fossen has previously appeared in Plan-B’s MIASMA, SHE WAS MY BROTHER, MESA VERDE, LADY MACBETH, SUFFRAGE and NOTHING PERSONAL; many a SLAM; and the Script-In-Hand Series readings of 8, MARRY CHRISTMAS. I admire polygamists. Not the Warren Jeffs variety, but the modern, Big Love-type folks. Consenting adults who are doing what we all do—working jobs, raising kids, doing their best to be good people—just with more than one wife. Okay, yes, I struggle with the patriarchal aspects of polygamy. But…those women. Here’s the thing: marriage is complicated. I never call it “hard” because I don’t think it is, just complicated. Juggling the disparate needs and wants of two people, or two people plus kids—that’s complicated. Adding god into the mix? What he/she/it wants/expects of you? That’s a whole new level of complication. And on top of that, add more wives? It’s mind-boggling. But that’s not even the reason I admire them—I guess with a good calendaring system a lot of things are more possible. What I admire is the self-sacrifice. The generosity of spirit. I guess this is where I’d have to admit that I also admire people who can maintain open marriages or polyamorous marriages. I DO NOT know how they do it. Be willing to share your partner? Do it with love and understanding? Put the needs of your partner so far above your own? I honestly can’t wrap my brain around it. And I’ve tried. I’ve been thinking and talking about these aspects of marriage pretty much nonstop (apologies, friends and loved ones) for the past year, since I first read a draft of PILOT...

Playwright Melissa Leilani Larson brings the awkward to PILOT PROGRAM

Melissa Leilani Larson makes her Plan-B debut with PILOT PROGRAM. An award-winning writer from Provo, Utah, her plays MARTYRS’ CROSSING (IRAM Best New Play) debuted at the 2013 Edinburgh Fringe and PRIDE AND PREJUDICE (Association for Mormon Letters Drama award) enjoyed a sold-out run at Brigham Young University last March. Her screenplay FREETOWN, presently filming in Ghana, will be in cinemas in April 2015. Other plays include LITTLE HAPPY SECRETS (Association for Mormon Letters Drama award), A FLICKERING (Trustus Playwrights Festival finalist), STANDING STILL STANDING (Mayhew award), and LADY IN WAITING (Lewis National Playwriting Contest for Women winner). Dramatists Guild ambassador for Utah, BA in English from BYU, MFA from the Iowa Playwrights Workshop. I’m rather good at being awkward. The other night I went to a screening of a film I worked on. It’s probably been one of the biggest things I’ve done so far, just by sheer audience size: 750 people saw that one screening. That’s more than whole runs of shows of plays I’ve produced. A little depressing if you think about it, actually—but amazing at the same time. After the film, the filmmakers moved to the lobby where a vinyl backdrop emblazoned with the film’s title had been set up. The producer, director, distributor, composer, and myself posed for photos in front of the title backdrop. Because everyone wants to get a photo taken with a first time screenwriter, right? At one point I stepped up to take a photo with the director—just him and me. We’re friends, so I didn’t have any qualms about giving him a hug or putting an arm around him...

How To Love UT Give UT, Plan-B Theatre Style

WHY SHOULD YOU SUPPORT PLAN-B AS PART OF #LoveUTGiveUT? We asked three friends – Utah State Representative Rebecca Chavez-Houck, Former Utah State Representative/Salt Lake City Mayoral Candidate Jackie Biskupski and actress Anne Decker – to share their thoughts about supporting Plan-B. WE INVITE YOU TO LUGU, PLAN-B STYLE: In 2013 we were supported by 118 donors at $10 each. In 2014 that number more than doubled to 250 donors at $10 each. In 2015 we hope to double that again to 500 donors at $10 each! Last year Utah FACES and Plan-B Theatre placed 1st and 2nd among Small Nonprofits, sharing $7,500 in prize money. Rather than compete with each other this year, we thought we’d work together and ask you to help us place 1st and 2nd again and share $15,000 in prize money (or even help us create the first ever LUGU tie)! The total number of unique donors, not the total amount raised, matters most. Click here to make your donation to Plan-B – your gift of $10 or more by Thursday at 11:59pm will directly support Plan-B’s work with local playwrights for the remainder of the 2014/15 season and the first half of the 2015/16 season. And click here to make your donation to Utah FACES in support of their spay and neuter program. Split $20 between us! Whether you give in advance or on the very day, please plan to  hang out with us online @planbtheatreco on Twitter, Instagram, Vine, Tumblr, YouTube & Facebook throughout the day to see what we’re up to and catch the announcement of our 2015/16 season – our 25th anniversary! – and/or join us and Utah FACES to...

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