THE BELLS IS STRAWSHOP'S
ANSWER TO POPULAR DEMAND
Strawberry Theatre Workshop is the only Seattle company to have been nominated for the TPS Gregory Award for Outstanding Production three years in a row. This achievement is even more notable when one considers that during the three years of voting, Strawshop has only produced two plays each season.
Throughout 2011, Strawshop asked its loyal patrons if they wanted a third show, and the answer was a resounding "yes". Produced mostly from funds solicited from the public, the response to popular demand is Theresa Rebeck's The Bells, opening at the Erickson Theatre Off Broadway on January 26, 2012.
Directed by Julie Beckman (who last piloted The Elephant Man at Strawshop) The Bells is a complex mystery set on the Northwest frontier at the height of the Alaskan Gold Rush. The play centers on a group of loners and eccentrics still eking out a living in the vast Alaskan wilderness. In their midst is Mathias, innkeeper in a derelict town, who is haunted by a secret that changed the direction of his life. The Bells is both an epic and deeply personal play confronting questions of guilt and responsibility while spinning an absorbing fireside ghost story.
The Strawshop production features Peter Crook (from Book-It's The Cider House Rules) and Brenda Joyner (NCTC's On the Nature of Dust) as the father/daughter family surviving in a world of individualists. Patrick Allcorn (Border Songs at Book-It) is the stranger from Quebec who is investigating a disappearance. Galen Joseph Osier (who appeared in both The Laramie Project and Breaking the Code at Strawshop in 2010) joins Lisa Viertel, Jose Abaoag, and John Quince Smith as hard-luck prospectors. Designs are by Anastasia Armes, Montana Tippett, Evan Mosher, and Reed Nakayama. The Bells is stage-managed by Claire Branch.
Though it premiered at the McCarter Theatre in Princeton, New Jersey, The Bells has its developmental roots in the Northwest. Former Intiman Artistic Director Bartlett Sher directed a staged reading of the play at the Hedgebrook Women's Playwrights Festival at ACT in 2001. At the time, Rebeck said, "It's an amazing opportunity to find a community of people willing to nurture you as a writer like this." When contacted by Strawshop, Rebeck was thrilled to hear that The Bells was finally receiving a full production in Seattle--an area with a rich historic connection to the Alaskan Gold Rush.
In addition to the experiment of the January timing, Strawshop is also adjusting a seven-year tradition of running plays for five weekends. Opening January 26, The Bells will have only twelve performances and close February 18. General admission tickets are $30.
For more information go to www.strawshop.org
Erickson Theatre Off Broadway (View)
1524 Harvard Ave
Seattle, WA 98122
|Minimum Age: 12|
|Kid Friendly: No|
|Dog Friendly: No|
|Wheelchair Accessible: Yes!|