Theatre

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Checkmate, Chekhov

Published January 28, 2012 by Kristin

Brahms’ Lullaby plays, fading into—

Elmo as "Matador"?

Bert: Good evening and welcome to this hour of “Mother Goose Children’s Theatre,” bringing you safe theatre for your bedtime stories. Which is like Elmo training to be a Matador. I’m your host, Bertolt Brahms.

 

 

In recent news, Sanford Meisner met up with the television comedian, Jack Benny, for a special two-hour interview with BBC. The interview will air in two weeks, but the following review can be found on their website.

English: Publicity photo of Jack Benny.

Jack Benny

Sanford Meisner met a miser

 

Ebeneezer Scrooge was he

 

He cast Jack Benny, counting his pennies,

 

Repeating “Bah Humbug,” for a fee.

 

 

In an attempt to bring the world of sports and theatre closer together, as Brecht would have liked, Mother Goose Children’s Theatre will soon produce our own version of The Threepenny Opera in which an entire football game will happen simultaneously. But until then: if theatre had a sport’s announcer, here are some phrases you might hear.

 

The game’s aFoote!

Chekhov and his Australian teammate, Checkmate

Aannd…Noises Off!

It’s going…it’s going…it’s Far Away!

Boy, is he ever hitting those aside lines. Nailed ‘em.

 

Capra's answer to shoplifting.

 

The retail clothing store located next to us has recently started using our advertising posters as a new way of communicating with their customers.

For example, right now their “Shoplifters will be prosecuted” sign has our “You Can’t Take It With You” sign displayed directly below it.

 

 

 

 

Finally this evening, we leave you with a sweet little lullaby for all you children out there whose fathers are actors. If he weren’t in rehearsal right now, this is what he would sing to you.

 

The Actor’s Lullaby:

 

How to study for a biology exam.

Hush, little baby, don’t say a word,

Papa’s playing Hamlet; or have you heard?

 

 

If you heard, then you must know

I auditioned for Edgar Allen Poe.

 

 

If old Poe does not pan out,

Papa’s playing Bishop in Shanley’s Doubt.

 

 

If in Doubt I seem a goof,

I’ll be trying out for David Auburn’s Proof.

 

 

And if in Proof all I do is bellow,

Then sign me up to play Othello.

 

 

Magic is like acting. Deception for a living...

And if Othello can’t be contained,

I’ll try sleight of hand with David Blaine.

 

 

If David Blaine should just seem a clown,

Then I’ll stay right here, and not go into town.

 

 

 

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One for the Money

Published January 14, 2012 by Kristin

Brahms’ Lullaby plays, fading into—

 

Bert: Good evening and welcome to this hour of “Mother Goose Children’s Theatre,” bringing you safe theatre for your bedtime stories.

Little Red Riding Hood

Which is like showing The Wolfman movie to Little Red Riding Hood. I’m your host, Bertolt Brahms.

 

Harold Clurman has written a new book called On Directing 2. Because of mass confusion over the title (some thinking that Clurman gave instruction on how to direct a two-person cast), there will be a re-printing with a new title, A Second Installment of Directing Principles as it Applies to the Theatre of Today and as Seen Through the Experience of Harold Clurman. Here is Clurman’s introduction:

Little director has lost her actors,

And can’t tell where to find them.

Read them Antigone;

They’ll come right back you see,

Punctuality now more important to them.

 

And now we bring you, “A Taste of the Theatre,” where our everyday experiences turn into conflict-laden scripts.

Where all the best drama really happens.

Today, we step into the box office, amid a flurry of telephone calls and visiting patrons.

One for the money

“Yes, ma’am. You can only purchase one ticket for that price. No…no, I’m sorry, there is not a meal included. I’m sorry…cages? No…no cages. Ma’am. …Ma’am. There are no foxes in this production. Ma’am…I think…I think you misunderstood. No, ma’am, this is not a joke. I’m very serious. This is a theatre. We are performing The Little Foxes by Lillian Hellman. This is not the Zoo. Hello? …Hello?

 

Two for the show

“Thank you for holding, sir. Yes, there are only two remaining seats left for this evening’s performance. I double checked that with the Front of House Manager, the Head Usher, the Assistant Director, and the Director. I’m sorry…but three seats are just not available at this time. …Well, I did just confirm this with the playwright and publishing house as well. Yes, sir, I’m positive. Two seats. Not. Three. Yes sir, I counted them myself, just today. Yes. Thank-you.”

 

Three to get ready

Such signs bring great joy and fear.

“Yes, ma’am, I did appreciate your audition. Well, you see, it was supposed to be a one-minute audition. Not a three-seconds audition. Well…it wasn’t a terrible three seconds. Yes ma’am, you’re right—it was very concise. Well, you see, I’m not really sure how to tell you to improve…it was hard to tell in three seconds. Uh…but you didn’t throw up! That’s a positive!”

 

And four to go

“Ma’am…I appreciate the fact that she’s your granddaughter, but you cannot speak with her right now. Yes, yes, I know you want to congratulate her, but she’s performing right now. Well, let’s see…it’s a five act play…and it looks like…yes—they are still in the first act. …So yes, four more to go before it’s done. Yes, then you can congratulate her. Yes, ma’am, I’m sure she is a sweetheart. No, no…I’m already dating. Well, I mean—I  don’t think it’s a pity.”

 

Finally this evening, we bring back our series, History in Rhyme. This week focuses on the 1930s.

Cropped screenshot of Stella Adler from the tr...

Stella Adler

Three Group Theatre peeps,

Stella Adler they could not keep,

And they began to cry;

“With Stella there,

Will Stanislavski dare,

His system to her teach?”

 

“What? Teach his system?

This does not show wisdom!”

But they did not know why.

No, no.

They did not know why.

 

Now Miss Adler bought

What Stanislavski taught.

“Yes, he’s a swell guy!

I learned imagination

While in this other nation

Yes, he’s a swell guy!”

 

Where the Red Fern Grows

Published December 10, 2011 by Kristin

Brahms’ Lullaby plays, fading into—

Bert: Good evening and welcome to this hour of “Mother Goose Children’s Theatre,”

Cover of "WHERE THE RED FERN GROWS"

Sequel soon to be released: "Most Dogs Go To Heaven"

bringing you safe theatre for your bedtime stories. Which is like reading Where the Red Fern Grows to your puppy.

I’m your host, Bertolt Brahms.

First off, tonight, I’d like to announce our upcoming season here at “Mother Goose Children’s Theatre.” I know these plays will delight you in the forthcoming year.

Hey diddle diddle,

Cats, and The Fiddler,

The Buffalo’s Over the Moon,

The Little Mermaid, Proof,

The Cryptogram,

And The Cat on a Hot Tin Roof.

Of course, every season here ends with our own piece, written by myself—Bertolt Brahms—

English: Meryl Streep

"Mother Goose seemed like the natural conclusion after Doubt and Mamma Mia!"

entitled Mother Goose and her Nursery Rhymes. This year’s guest artist will be Meryl Streep starring in the lead role, Mother Goose.

Later this evening, the beloved bedtime story, Peter and the Wolf, as read by Konstantin Stanislavski and Alexander Ivanovich. Afterwards, Stanislavski and Ivanovich will be available for your calls.

But before that…History in Rhyme. Last week we covered the Renaissance. This week, we move into the 1800’s.

Little Actor Horner

Sat in a corner

Drinking his whiskey rye.

He thought he was Booth

Which was rather uncouth

And said, “What a good Hamlet am I!”

On to our Gossip Corner. Last week, I was headed to St. Ives, and I met a man with seven wives. I called him Henry the VIII, to which he took no small offense. I had to admit my error. The man had outdone Henry. Henry only had six wives. I never could seem to remember, as Shakespeare never told me. I went on my way, grateful that I did not need to count the number of kits, cats, sacks, and wives, and also pondering what Shakespeare would do with such modern day characters like this man, Liz Taylor, and Kim Kardashian.

The Halloween script contest results are now in. First place winner goes to Alice for her play entitled “Sweeney Todd in Richard III.” 

As a teaser, I have here the Child Catcher from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang to read the opening line.

Child Catcher:  “One, Two,

When I say ‘Boo,’

Three, Four,

You’ll see more gore,

Five, six,

Lollipop licks

Seven, eight,

Fingers taste great,

Nine, ten,

Let’s do it again!

Bert: In other news, the writers of the hit television series, “24,” have started a new series for children, called “12.” And instead of the pounding countdown that starts each hour, the episode will begin with—

“Jack be nimble,

Jack be quick,

Jack hit the President

With a heavy brick.”

I’m also pleased to announce that next summer we will be celebrating the Corpus Christi Feast Day with our own live production. It will be outdoors on the green by the parish. Tickets are free, but seating limited. Everyman for himself.

Updates from the playwrights:

Cover of "Three Uses of the Knife"

1) As a prop on stage. 2) As a straight edge when drawing stage designs. 3) As a means of termination of the pain associated with grad students' thesis papers

David Mamet, inspired by the 4thaddition to the Twighlight saga, is coming out with his complete series, Three Uses of the Knife, Four Uses of the Fork, Five Uses of the Spoon, and Stupid Uses of the Spork. You can preorder them now on Amazon.

And now our tongue twister of the day.

Peter Brook picked a peck of problematic plays.

Before our first commercial break, I would like to take this moment to thank our sponsor “King’s Horses and Men: Lifetime Insurance,” who after a lifetime, have finally put Humpty Dumpty back on wall street. We’ll be back after these messages.