The Living Room's 2016-2017 Season
The Living Room jump started its 2016-2017 season with Sharr White’s Annapurna,
featuring two of KC’s most beloved performers, Charles Fugate and Vanessa Severo, directed by Rusty Sneary.
the writer's den series
November through February The Living Room reprises The Writer’s Den series: three months of new work in workshops, readings and productions. The series begins with TLR’s 24 hour playwrighting festival: No Sleep November, bringing together KC’s writers, actors and technicians to create and perform new works in just 24 hours. You’ll see workshop readings of The Ballad of Lefty and Crabbe by Ben Auxier, Brian Huther and Seth Macchi and Kyle Hatley's new adaptation of The Tragedy of Macbeth by William Shakespeare. Your responses will shape the development of these new works, and you’ll see them in full productions at the end of the season.
The series features a workshop production of Victor Wishna’s Shearwater, starring Peggy Friesen in a two-week run. Throughout the Writer’s Den series you’ll see night after night of readings, including a week of new work by Ron Simonian. This series offers a preview of Kansas City’s rising artists and a peek behind the curtain at the process of creating new work for the theatre.
Two professors, one liberal, the other conservative, plead their cases to each other in the hopes of saving their careers, and their friendship. Trigger Happy represents a slice of the millennial revolution and it's enforcement of a new set of offensively non-offensive guidelines. Filled with wit, bite, and heart, this new play by Ron Simonian is an enthralling and thought-provoking snapshot of a country that can't seem to get on the same page, and what that means for all of us.
Featuring Scott Cordes and Mark Robbins
Directed by Rusty Sneary
the ballad of lefty & Crabbe
From the minds behind Friend Dog Studios and the creators of this year’s hit fringe comedy “Hacks,” comes “The Ballad of Lefty and Crabbe.” This musical comedy played to packed houses and standing ovations at the 2015 Fringe Festival, and returned for a full production during The Living Room’s 2016-2017 season.
Comedy partners Lefty and Crabbe are faced with the slow decline of Vaudeville and the rise of Hollywood. As they struggle to break into film, the pressure to conform grows stronger and threatens to change their looks, their act, and possibly leave their partnership in ruins. Features all-new music, a host of old-timey characters and a peek into the struggle between passion and self-consciousness; self-acceptance and ambition.
Featuring Seth Macchi, Michael Hudgens, Molly Denninghoff, Brian Huther, Ellen Kirk, Mike Ott, Elise Poehling, and Joshua Gleeson.
"The writers and actors won me over with the sheer joy of performing and love of theater. And that’s something you can’t fake. The Ballad of Lefty & Crabbe is part of the Living Room’s mission to produce original work by local or expatriate artists. Other theater companies should take note. I suspect this show has a future."
- Robert Trussell, KC Studio
"Playwrights Ben Auxier, Brian Huther, and Seth Macchi have put together an absolutely enjoyable evening at the theater. Dialogue is tight. The jokes are funny."
- Alan Portner, Broadway World
"The team is also able to tap into some kind of immediacy — whether it’s the small theater, the local talent or the 1920s nostalgia — that makes this production something to savor. (And don’t forget to stay for the post-curtain call sequence.)"
- Christine Pivovar, The Kansas City Star
"The heartfelt performances and unbridled silliness add up to an affectionate evening of escapism. The Ballad of Lefty and Crabbe is the stage equivalent of a summer blockbuster..."
- Liz Cook, The Pitch
"Hudgens and Macchi absolutely carry the show with their singing and acting. They are a joy to watch. The interaction and camaraderie amongst the cast sends electricity to the audience. ★★★★★"
- Bob Evans, KC Applauds
the tragedy of macbeth
august 11 - September 3
To close out this season, acclaimed auteur Kyle Hatley (Titus Andronicus, Carousel, The Death of Cupid and Master of the Universe) returns from Chicago to stage a new adaptation in The Living Room’s loft space. With only three actors and no intermission, Hatley’s new adaptation of Shakespeare’s Macbeth will hit hard and leave you wanting more. Features Natalie Liccardello and Hatley. Original score by Sean Hogge.
Three PLAYERS walk into a room. Each of them carries the things they need to tell their story.
It isn’t much. Two of them set up props and pieces. One of them sets up musical instruments.
What happens next is the players’ swift, intimate and athletic take on one of Shakespeare’s most popular plays.
Two of them play all the roles, while one of them scores the story live, as these three players share their dark and terrifyingly close look into this couple’s marriage and the fear that compels them to commit the crimes they commit, independently, and together.
From the team behind Titus Andronicus, Carousel, The Death of Cupid and Master of the Universe.