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Location: Lincoln, Nebraska

Saturday, March 31, 2012

Emotional, Intellectual, Imaginative, and Frank


Angels in America, Part Two tackles AIDS issues with bravery

Pamela S. Thompson, Lincoln Journal Star, March 31, 2012


Most people remember America in the 1980s from its trends – the Rubik's cube, shoulder pads, Pac-Man, Cabbage Patch dolls, and MTV.

In Tony Kushner's epic drama Angels in America, Part Two: Perestroika, performed at theHaymarket Theatre, the drama involves the bigger issue of an America coming to grips with the advent of AIDS . . .

This production, directed by Bob Hall, is sleek and faithful to Kushner's highly literate, complex, and multilayered script from 1992. The play focuses on a group of people in New York who intersect in various, overlapping ways, all wrestling with issues involving love, betrayal, and guild within the context of AIDS. This emotional, intellectual, imaginative, and frank drama frequently is humorous and slightly surreal. The explicit, mature subject matter deals squarely with topics steered away from at the polite dinner table: religion, sex, death, and politics.

It most certainly is not family entertainment . . .

The cast turns in solid acting throughout, although masterful performances come from Andy Dillehay as Prior Walter and Matt Lukasiewicz as Joe Pitt. Particularly effective is Summer Widhalm as Harper Pitt, for whom the loss of love brings about a descent into madness that is somehow both funny and painful.

Just like the AIDS crisis itself, this is a play that has weight, one that takes courage to stage. Bob Hall and his team are to be congratulated for their bravery.


This Flatwater Shakespeare Company and Haymarket Theatre production continues Sunday, April 1, and Thursdays through Sundays, April 5-8 and 12-15, at The Haymarket Theatre, 803 “Q” Street in Lincoln. All show times are 7:30 p.m. Ticket prices are $18 for adults, $15 for seniors, and $10 for students. Call 402-477-2600 for reservations.


Photo
: Nathan Weiss as Louis, Andy Dillehay as Prior, and Elizabeth Govaerts as Nurse Emily in the Flatwater Shakespeare / Haymarket Theatre production of Angels in America, Part Two: Perestroika. Photo Credit: John Nollendorfs.




Wednesday, March 28, 2012

The World Only Spins Forward


We're thrilled to approach, yet again, the Threshold of Revelation!


The Flatwater Shakespeare Company and The Haymarket Theatre proudly present Tony Kushner's Angels in America, Part Two: Perestroika starting this weekend. The Preview Performance is Thursday, March 29, 7:30, and the Opening is Friday, March 30, 7:30, at The Haymarket Theatre, 803 “Q” Street in Lincoln. The show runs Thursdays through Sundays until April 15. Call 402-477-2600.


On both nights, $5 tickets are available – just let us know (or confirm) your e-mail contact information.


Director Bob Hall talks about the show on Rook's Entertainment Roundup this Thursday, March 29, on KLKN-TV. The segment will air on the Channel 8 Eyewitness News Midday and Channel 8 Eyewitness News at Five – so please tune in!


Photo: Bob Rook and Bob Hall discuss Angels in America, Part Two: Perestroika on Rook's Entertainment Roundup. Photo Credit: KLKN-TV.


Monday, March 26, 2012

Change in Schedule -- *Angels in America, Part Two* Opens Friday, March 30.


Due to a leading actor's recent illness (appendicitis with complications!), the opening for the Flatwater Shakespeare / Haymarket Theatre production of Angels in America, Part Two: Perestroika has been pushed back one night. The Official Opening is now scheduled for Friday, March 30, 7:30 p.m., at The Haymarket Theatre, 803 "Q" Street in Lincoln. Call 402-477-2600 for reservations.

Audiences are still welcome on Thursday, March 29, for a Preview Performance. Give us (or confirm) your e-mail contact information and tickets for Thursday and Friday are just $5.

Also, talkback sessions with the cast and creative team will take place after every Saturday performance.

Angels in America, Part Two: Perestroika

Dates: March 30-31, April 1; April 5-8, 12-15 (Preview March 29)

Time: 7:30 p.m.

Place: The Haymarket Theatre, 803 "Q" St., Lincoln

Tickets: 402-477-2600

Thursday, March 22, 2012

FLATWATER SHAKESPEARE AND THE HAYMARKET THEATRE PRESENT “ANGELS IN AMERICA, PART TWO: PERESTROIKA” MARCH 29 -APRIL 15


Angels in America, Part Two: Perestroika completes playwright Tony Kushner's modern classic as the Flatwater Shakespeare Company again joins forces with The Haymarket Theatre. Described by the author as “A Gay Fantasia on American Themes,” this Pulitzer Prize winning play examines 1980s America with warm humor, savage wit, soaring imagination, heartbreak, and hope. The show opens Thursday, March 29, at The Haymarket Theatre, 803 “Q” Street in Lincoln. Performances continue Friday-Sunday, March 30-31 and April 1; and Thursday-Sunday, April 5-8 and 12-15. All show times are 7:30 p.m. Ticket prices are $18 for adults, $15 for seniors, and $10 for students. Call 402-477-2600 for reservations.

Angels in America, Part Two continues the stories of Prior, Belize, Louis, Joe, Harper, Hannah, and Roy. The historical context of the failing Soviet Union's attempts at Perestroika – restructuring – illuminates how U. S. society responded and adapted to the AIDS crisis. Human emotions and cultural tensions are all explored with great flair, honesty, and humanity. Director Bob Hall is proud that Flatwater Shakespeare and the Haymarket Theatre are co-presenting what he calls an “astonishing play” that “reveals how the AIDS epidemic, devastating as it was, focused this country’s attention on a part of society it often preferred to ignore.”

Hall has gathered together an ensemble equal to the task of bringing these memorable characters to life, with Andy Dillehay as Prior, Daniel Kubert as Belize, Nathan Weiss as Louis, Mary Douglass as Hannah, Summer Widhalm as Harper, and Matt Lukasiewicz as Joe. Richard Nielsen again appears as Kushner’s fictionalized, but true-to-life version of Roy Cohn. Flatwater Shakespeare associates Elizabeth Govaerts and Dustin Witte take on a dizzying number of supporting roles.

This ground-breaking play raises several important issues, which audience members will want to discuss. As with last year’s production, talkbacks will be held immediately after several performances. Support for Angels in America has been generously provided by the Cooper Foundation and the Lincoln Arts Council. For more information, visit flatwatershakespeare.org and haymarkettheatre.org.

Angels in America, Part Two: Perestroika

Dates: March 29-31, April 1; April 5-8, 12-15

Time: 7:30 p.m.

Place: The Haymarket Theatre, 803 "Q" St., Lincoln

Tickets: 402-477-2600, $18 Adults; $15 Seniors; $10 Students

Photo: Summer Widhalm as Harper in the Flatwater Shakespeare / Haymarket Theatre production of Angels in America. Photo Credit: John Nollendorfs.


Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Angels, Part One, Once More!


Hailed as one of Lincoln's finest theatrical experiences of 2011, Angels in America, Part One: Millennium Approaches returns for one day, March 18, to the Haymarket Theatre, 803 “Q” Street, at 2:00 p.m. This staged reading will feature actors from the 2011 cast as they prepare for Angels in America, Part Two: Perestroika, which opens later this month.

The Flatwater Shakespeare Company and The Haymarket Theatre are proud to collaborate on the presentation of both parts of this Pulitzer Prize winning play, which examines 1980s America – and makes prophetic observations about the current state of the nation – with warm humor, savage wit, soaring imagination, heartbreak, and hope. The staged reading is presented free of charge. For information, call 402-477-2600.

Part One focuses on three relationships: Louis and Prior, who have just learned that Prior has AIDS; Harper and her husband Joe, a Mormon couple living in New York City who take separate refuge in pills and the closet; Joe and his would-be mentor, Roy Cohn – the powerful lawyer whose historic career was aligned with Joe McCarthy, Richard Nixon, and Ronald Reagan. Their lives are uprooted by illness, drug dependency, religious doctrine, and political ambition – all explored with great flair, honesty, and humanity.

Director Bob Hall has gathered together an ensemble equal to the task of bringing these memorable characters to the stage. Nathan Weiss and Andy Dillehay are compelling as Louis and Prior. Summer Widhalm and Matt Lukasiewicz heartbreakingly play Harper and Joe. Richard Nielsen is ferocious as Kushner’s fictionalized, but true-to-life version of Roy Cohn. Daniel Kubert shines as Belize, the nurse who cares for Prior both physically and emotionally. Other performers include Flatwater Shakespeare associates Tom Bolin, Mary Douglass, Elizabeth Govaerts, and Dustin Witte.

Support for Angels in America has been generously provided by the Cooper Foundation and the Lincoln Arts Council.

For more information, please visit flatwatershakespeare.org and haymarkettheatre.org.

Angels in America, Part One: Millenium Approaches

A Staged Reading

March 18, 2 p.m

The Haymarket Theatre, 803 “Q” Street, Lincoln

Information: 402-477-2600

Photo: Matt Lukasiewicz as Joe and Richard Nielsen as Roy Cohn in the Flatwater Shakespeare Company and Haymarket Theatre production of Angels in America.

Photo Credit: John Nollendorfs.


Monday, March 05, 2012

Flatwater Shakespeare and the 2012 Mayor's Arts Awards


The 2012 Mayor's Arts Awards for the city of Lincoln has honored the Flatwater Shakespeare Company's touring production of A Midsummer Night's Dream as the Outstanding Arts Event of 2011.

In addition, two long-time Flatwater Shakespeare associate artists have also been recognized. Actor Stephen A. Gaines will receive the Artistic Achievement Award in Performing Arts and Costume Designer Janice Stauffer will receive the Artistic Achievement Award in Visual Arts.

About that Outstanding Arts Event: last summer, the Flatwater Shakespeare Company presented Shakespeare's most magical comedy at parks and other outdoor locations around Lincoln – and presented it free of charge.

The tour was organized by the show's properties master, Dustin Witte, and movement director, Daniel Kubert, with the help of Dave Bomberger of Lincoln Parks. The show, directed by Bob Hall, was based on the production previously staged at Lincoln Community Foundation Garden. The tour was made possible by a grant from the Woods Charitable Trust. Free ice cream was generously provided by Ivanna Cone.

Venues on the tour included Prescott Elementary School, Cooper Park, Bethany Park, Henry Park, First Plymouth Congregational Church, Trago Park, Antelope Park, and Woods Park.


Audiences were large, lively, and appreciative, offering a range of positive comments:

My family and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Thank you so much for your passion and commitment, and keep it up!”

“It's a great idea and I hope Flatwater Shakespeare can continue to present excellent work in exciting locations.”

“We had a great time and I am delighted that both girls now have a new found love of Shakespeare. As a matter of fact, they want to know when we can do it again!”

The entire staff and creative team for the Flatwater Shakespeare Company are delighted with this honor – and we're eager to go on tour again this summer with Twelfth Night.

The 2012 Mayor's Arts Awards will be formally presented at a banquet the evening of Monday, June 18. More details later here and on the Lincoln Arts Council webpage: http://www.artscene.org/mayors-arts-awards.