World Premiere by Rob Tennant
December 3-13, 2015
Th & F @ 8, Sat @ 4 & 8, Sun @ 2 (also 12/13 @ 5:30)
A dark comedy about working retail during the holidays, underemployment, income inequality, job insecurity and crushing debt. Oh, and the true meaning of Christmas.
The holiday rush has hit the bookstore. Casey (Tyson Baker) has had it up to here with his job, as well as rude customers, and makes a momentous decision. Will his equally harried co-workers (Anne Louise Brings, Joe Crnich, April Fossen, Sarah Danielle Young) join him in his protest or will they talk him back onto the sales floor? Directed by Jerry Rapier.
From the Playwright | Press
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*AEA ^SDC **USA
Tyson Baker (Casey) has previously appeared in Plan-B’s ROSE EXPOSED: DREAMERS, the Script-In-Hand Series readings of MARRY CHRISTMAS and CARAVAN (at the Parliament of the World’s Religions) and the Free Elementary School Tours of DIFFERENT=AMAZING and RUFF!. Recent credis include R+J: STAR-CROSS’D DEATH MATCH (Salt Lake Acting Company), MOCKINGBIRD (PYGmalion Theatre Company), CLOSER (Wasatch Theatre Company), THE 39 STEPS and THE MUSICAL OF MUSICALS [THE MUSICAL] (Old Lyric Repertory Company) THE CRUCIBLE (Grand Theatre) and PAINT YOUR WAGON, SEVEN BRIDES FOR SEVEN BROTHERS and THE BALLAD OF CAT BALLOU (Jackson Hole Playhouse). One day he hopes to finish his degree at Weber State University.
Anne Louise Brings (Cindy) returns to Plan-B following ROSE EXPOSED: DREAMERS and the Script-In-Hand Series reading of CARAVAN at the Parliament of the World’s Religions. Other recent credits: W;T (Wasatch Theatre Company), HOW I LEARNED TO DRIVE (Pinnacle Acting Company), MOCKINGBIRD and SPARK (PYGmalion Theatre Company), THE CRUCIBLE (Pioneer Theatre Company), AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY (Silver Summit/Utah Rep), BEOWULF (Meat & Potato Theatre) and AS YOU LIKE IT (Davis Arts Council).
Cheryl Ann Cluff (Sound Designer) co-founded Plan-B in 1991 and has served as Managing Director since 1995. She appeared as an actor in many early Plan-B productions from 1991-2004 and is the company’s Resident Sound Designer, providing sound design for nearly every production since 2001. She has directed all ten episodes of RADIO HOUR from 2006-2015, including RADIO POE (which she also adapted). She has also directed five mainstage productions since 2011: MESA VERDE, THE SCARLET LETTER, SUFFRAGE, 3 and CHRISTMAS WITH MISFITS. She is the astonished and bewildered mother of Lydia and Charlie Riesen.
Joe Crnich (Ed) makes his Plan-B debut. An artist and educator with 25+ years experience in the professional and academic theatre worlds, Joe is a BFA graduate of the University of Florida. He has worked at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago and Hippodrome State Theatre in Florida and performed at The Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. Locally Joe has been seen in IN THE NEXT ROOM [OR THE VIBRATOR PLAY] (PYGmalion Theatre Company), EURYDICE (Grand Theatre) and AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY (Silver Summit/Utah Rep).
April Fossen (Ruth) has been seen in Plan-B’s PILOT PROGRAM, NOTHING PERSONAL, SUFFRAGE, LADY MACBETH, MESA VERDE, SHE WAS MY BROTHER, MIASMA, eight SLAMs and the Script-in-Hand Series readings of 8, MARRY CHRISTMAS and EXPOSED. Recent local credits include BLACKBERRY WINTER (Salt Lake Acting Company), AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY (Silver Summit/Utah Rep), THE RIGHTEOUS AND VERY REAL HOUSEWIVES OF UTAH COUNTY (Alligator Press Productions) and THE COMEDY OF ERRORS (Pinnacle Acting Company). Regional credits include work with Berkeley Repertory Theatre and the California Shakespeare Festival. April holds a Bachelor’s degree in Theatre Arts from UC Berkeley.
Jennifer Freed* (Stage Manager) is proud to be part of Plan-B Theatre Company’s 25th season. She has managed nearly every production since 1998: favorites include GUTENBERG! THE MUSICAL!, SUFFRAGE, MESA VERDE, HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH (all three productions)! and MAMA, to name just a few. “Big thanks to Jerry and Cheryl for letting me continue working with Plan-B!”
Jesse Portillo** (Lighting Designer) has worked with Plan-B since 2007. His favorite Plan-B productions include HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH, BLOCK 8, EXPOSED, AMERIGO, ERIC(A) and SHE WAS MY BROTHER. He has also designed Lighting for Pioneer Theatre Company, Salt Lake Acting Company, Salt Lake Shakespeare, PYGmalion Theatre Company, Grand Theatre, LOOK Musical Theatre, Baylor University, Mobile Opera and Millikin University. Proud member, USITT and United Scenic Artists Local 829.
Jerry Rapier^ (Director) saw his first Plan-B production, ANCIENT HOUSE, in 1998. In a crazy turn of events, he became the company’s Artistic Director in 2000 and has since directed MOLLY SWEENEY, THE LARAMIE PROJECT, MY LEFT BREAST, HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH (x3), ANIMAL FARM, PATIENT A, AMERIKA, FACING EAST, EXPOSED, GUTENBERG! THE MUSICAL!, THE TRICKY PART, BLOCK 8, DI ESPERIENZA, WALLACE, AMERIGO, SHE WAS MY BROTHER, BORDERLANDS, LADY MACBETH, THE THIRD CROSSING, ERIC(A), NOTHING PERSONAL, DIFFERENT=AMAZING, MAMA, PILOT PROGRAM, RUFF!, THE KREUTZER SONATA and a slew of Script-In-Hand Series readings for the company. He and his husband, Kirt Bateman (happy 20th anniversary at the end of this month!), are the proud and terrified parents of Oscar George Bateman-Rapier, who is already much smarter than either of them will ever be.
Aaron Swenson (Costume Designer) returns to Plan-B after starring in the company’s three productions of HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH, the third of which he also designed. Recent designs include THE ROCKY HORROR SHOW (Pioneer Theatre Company), YOU’RE A GOOD MAN, CHARLIE BROWN and TWELFTH NIGHT (Salt Lake Shakespeare), GEOGRAPHY CLUB and AVENUE Q (University of Utah), ASSASSINS (Dark Horse Company Theatre) and NINE DRAGONS and THERE’S A MONSTER IN MY CLOSET (Youth Theatre at the U). Aaron is PTC’s Wardrobe Supervisor/Head of Costume Crafts and has worked as a professional actor in Utah since 1997.
Sarah Danielle Young (Alex) has been seen on the Plan-B stage in SUFFRAGE and the Script-In-Hand Series readings of 8 and MARRY CHRISTMAS. Other local credits include THE FERMI PARADOX (Salt Lake Acting Company’s New Play Sounding Series), THE SKIN OF OUR TEETH (Grand Theatre), THESE SHINING LIVES (People Productions), AS YOU LIKE IT, ROMEO AND JULIET, and A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM (Davis Arts Council) and THE FARNDALE HOUSING ESTATE TOWNSWOMEN’S GUILD DRAMATIC SOCIETY’S PRODUCTION OF MACBETH (Meat & Potato Theatre). She holds a BA in theatre studies from the University of Utah and also works as a stage manager.
Rob Tennant (Playwright) is a writer of various forms and genres, but BOOKSMART is his first play. He would like to thank Plan-B Theatre Company and The David Ross Fetzer Foundation for Emerging Artists for the opportunity. He hopes David himself would have liked this one. He would also like to thank his wife, Rosy, for her love, patience, and support, as well as every bad customer he ever had for their constant inspiration.
The David Ross Fetzer Foundation for Emerging Artists has, in its three years of existence, provided three theatre grants to emerging artists, two of which resulted in Plan-B productions: Carleton Bluford’s award-winning MAMA and Rob Tennant’s BOOKSMART. The Davey Foundation, as it is more colloquially called, has also provided five short film grants, and will be premiering four of those short films at its annual Davey Foundation Showcase this December 15 at the Tower Theatre. For more information about the Davey Foundation, about its namesake and for tickets to the Showcase, visit thedaveyfoundation.org.
Plan-B Theatre Company celebrates its 25th season of developing and producing unique and socially conscious theatre created by Utah playwrights. Awards include 50 City Weekly Best of Utah Arts Awards (the most recent being Best Original Play and Best Theatre Production for Carleton Bluford’s MAMA, our first production in partnership with The David Ross Fetzer Foundation for Emerging Artists); 21 QSaltLake Fabby Awards; Organization of the Year awards from Equality Utah, Human Rights Campaign, Equality Utah and Transgender Education Advocates (TEA) of Utah (twice); and, in 2015, the Governor’s Organizational Leadership in the Arts Award and Salt Lake City’s Mayor’s Artist Award for Service to the Arts by An Organization. For more information about Plan-B, our history and our future, visit planbtheatre.org.
Whenever I envision a hippie I think of hair, long hair. And as Jerry pointed out in rehearsal the other day my hair is sparse and grey. But here we are.
If you don’t recognize some of yourself in any of these characters of BOOKSMART the way I did, you will surely see someone who you’ve encountered.
I have a messy room that stinks and I need to do some laundry because my workshirts are getting gross.
. . . the best part about working in a bookstore is . . . playing with the books.