Special “Farces” Events

Valentine’s Weekend, February 13-15, is Comedy weekend at City Circle!
Our “Evening of Farces” runs Friday and Saturday nights at 7:30, with a Sunday matinee at 2:00.
It features Tom Stoppard’s The Real Inspector Hound and Peter Shaffer’s Black Comedy, two one-act plays with an intermission between. 

10849075_792151704154999_8856190421543239124_oAdditionally, we have a special event planned for each of the three show days.

On Friday, there will be a pre-show reception at the LuxeZone, which is just steps from the theater.  There will be wine and light refreshments – just what you need to prepare for an evening of laughter!  Pre-show reception starts at 6:00pm. Click here to go to the event on Facebook for more information.

After Saturday’s show, we will host an on-stage reception for City circle members and donors with members of the casts and the production team.  Come relax on the set and have a drink with us!

On Sunday, we’ll host a “Day of Comedy” for students.  Dramaturg and House Manager of the Coralville Center for the Performing Arts Nancy Mayfield will give a pre-show talk at 1:45 pm, and there will be a talk-back after the show with some of the actors and production team members.  These are presented with students in mind, but anyone who is attending Sunday’s show is welcome to sit in on both.  Additionally, there will be two classes for students (7th grade and older) that will take place from 10:00 am-1:00 pm: a comedic acting workshop with Patrick DuLaney and an Improv workshop with Elijah Jones.  Both classes are free with admission to The Farces!  There is a special price for single students, as well as a hugely discounted price for student groups of 10 or more.  This document has all the details: Student Special.

We are very excited about this double bill of hilarious plays, as well as all three special events.

We hope to see you there!


British Invasion Season Announced

City Circle held its annual “Change of Seasons” party on January 27 at the North Ridge Pavilion in Coralville.
Many of our generous supporters were on hand, as well as friends and fans of the company, and members of the Board of Directors.  The food and wine flowed, and when everyone was in the mood for the Big Announcement, Chris Okiishi welcomed all and introduced a very special guest, Queen Elizabeth II, who took over as Mistress of Ceremonies.  As Her Majesty announced the planned shows, Carrie Houchins-Witt and Chuck Bogh, two popular City Circle actors, performed a number from each.  To make sure their performances were not viewed as “early auditions” or “pre-casting,” they switched roles, to the delight of the audience.

Now we’d like to announce our upcoming season here.
It has been themed “The British Invasion,” with each chosen play and musical having to do with the British, or an Invasion, or both!

William Shakespeare’s Land of The Dead by John Heimbuch will kick off the season in October.  This play tells the tale of a zombie plague in Elizabethan London, just as Shakespeare is premiering his play, Henry V at the newly-constructed (and strong enough to keep out The Afflicted) Globe Theatre.  Yes, it is a mash-up of Shakespeare and Zombies, and it has humor, but is played very straight.  Shakespeare fans and English teachers will welcome this grand opportunity to give their zombie-loving friends, family members and students a new perspective on The Bard.  It will be directed by Patrick DuLaney.

For Christmas, we are presenting the beloved (and very British) musical, Oliver! with music and lyrics by Lionel Bart.  Based on Charles Dickens’ novel Oliver Twist, Oliver! tells the story of a young orphan finding his way through the streets and workhouses of Victorian London.  Full of popular songs and beloved characters, this is a large-cast musical that includes a children’s chorus.  Director Elizabeth Tracey will bring Oliver! to life for the holiday season.

In February, we will bring you one of Sondheim’s darkest, but most delicious musicals: Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street.  With music and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim and a book by Hugh Wheeler, Sweeney Todd tells the tale of a vengeful English barber and what comes of his blossoming relationship with the lady who runs the pie shop downstairs.  This special concert version will make for a thrilling Valentine’s Day weekend.  Mark Christopher Baer will be our guest director.

The ultimate expression of a British Invasion is the rousing, funny, smart tale of the founding of our great nation: 1776, music and lyrics by Sherman Edwards and book by Peter Stone.  This award-winning musical tells the story of John Adams, and his struggle to convince his colleagues to vote for independence and sign the declaration.  We will welcome Pauline Tyer back as director of this crowd-pleasing show.

To close the season, the Teen Musical will be the classic, Kiss Me, Kate. This one is American, of course, being Cole Porter’s first “integrated” musical (meaning the songs were connected to the story) and his biggest hit.  The story centers on a theatrical company that is producing Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew, which has a tumultuous central relationship that is reflected in that of the actors.  This is one more way we’re hoping to bring Shakespeare to young actors and audience members!

We are very excited about the British Invasion season.  Keep checking this website for updates on productions, auditions and special events.
We hope to see you on stage, back stage or in the audience for all of our upcoming productions.


Auditions for Into The Woods

Into The Woods is Stephen Sondheim’s beloved musical about what happens after “happily ever after.”  Our production will open on April 24 at the Coralville Center for the Performing Arts, and it will run through Sunday, May 3.  Chris Okiishi is directing.

Auditions will take place on Saturday, January 31 and Sunday, February 1 from 2:00pm until 6:00pm at The Community of Christ Church in Coralville.  To secure an audition appointment, please fill out an Audition Form.
Walk-ins are welcome, but will defer to those with appointments.

PLEASE NOTE:  We are having trouble with our server, and some forms are not transmitting.  If you do not hear back from our producer, Liz Tracey, within a day of submitting your form, please email her directly at liz@citycircle.org.  If you’ve already submitted an Audition Form and have yet to hear back, email her as soon as you can.  We don’t want to miss any auditions!!

Please bring sheet music in the correct key for a one minute section of a song that allows the actor to show the ability to communicate a character. No monologue will be necessary to prepare in advance.

All ages 12 and above are welcome. Casting will be age appropriate.

The mysterious man and narrator will not be double cast. The wolf and prince will be double cast. The cow will be cast with a human actor.

There are also roles for up to five ensemble people who will double as stage crew and various characters.


The Farces Are Cast

Krista Neumann and Elizabeth Tracey, directors of The Real Inspector Hound and Black Comedy, respectively, have announced the casts for both shows.

The Real Inspector Hound cast:

Moon:   Hank Welter
Birdboot:   Josh Sazon
Simon:   Ellis Fontana
Felicity:  Catherine Shook
Inspector Hound:   Rip Russell
Magnus:   Joseph Dobrian
Mrs. Drudge:  Kristin Owens
Cynthia:  TBA

The Black Comedy cast:

Brindsley Miller:   Elijah Jones
Carol Melkett:   Oli Peters
Miss Furnival:  Robyn Calhoun
Colonel Melkett:   Derek Johnson
Harold Gorringe:  Bryant Duffy
Clea:  Katy Karas
Schuppanzigh: TBA
Georg Bamburger: TBA

Please note that there are a few roles yet to be cast: Cynthia in Hound, and Schuppanzigh and Bamburger in Black Comedy.  If you’re an actor (or would like to be), please check the character breakdowns here, and submit an Audition Form to let our directors know that you’re interested.  If you’re not an actor (or not the right type for these roles), but you know someone who is, please spread the word.

Congratulations to the casts, and warm thanks to all who came out to audition.


Breakfast with Santa & Festival of Trees

Kick off the holiday season with two great events.

Breakfast with Santa will take place on Saturday, Nov 29 at 9:00 and 10:00am.   Breakfast includes pancakes, fruit, coffee and juice plus a visit with Santa and a picture that will be perfect for your holiday cards.  Santa’s helpers will be on hand to help with crafts, too.  All the fun happens at the Coralville Center for the Performing Arts.  You can buy tickets at the box office right before the event, or online.

Later on Saturday night is the annual gala celebration, the Festival of Trees; an evening of food, fun, festive performances, and holiday decor!

Tickets include heavy hors d’oeuvres, performances featuring City Circle and Nolte Academy talent, dancing on stage, and more! Of course we’ll have live and silent auctions of artistically decorated trees and wreaths and the ever popular grab bags. This party is fun for all ages and the perfect way to get into the holiday spirit.

6:30 PM: Event begins – food and cash bar
7:30 PM: Live auction of trees
8:00 PM: Performance
9:00 PM: Silent auction closes
10:30 PM: Event ends

Buy tickets at the box office or online.


Holiday Cabaret: Nice & Naughty Are Back!

cabaretThe Nice & Naughty Cabaret shows are back for a second year!
Shows are Saturday evenings, December 13 & 20 at 7:30pm (Nice) and 10:00pm (Naughty) at the Coralville Center for the Performing Arts.

Tickets to either show are $10.  Buy a ticket for both shows for only $15! Get tickets at the CCPA box office at 1301 5th St in Coralville, by phone at
(319) 248-9370, or online

This year’s Nice Cabaret will once again feature a Children’s Choir, the Hawkettes, and a host of holiday songs, old and new.  Some will touch your heart, and some will tickle your funny bone.  The Nice Cabaret is a perfect way to celebrate the holidays with the entire family.  It’s G-rated, and doesn’t give away any important seasonal secrets. Bring the kids!

The Naughty Cabaret presents holiday music and comedy with an irreverent edge.  It’s rated PG, but has been known to slip into R territory from time to time.  Anyone who has felt a bit like Scrooge or the Grinch during this festive, frustrating, cheery, chaotic time of the year will love the Naughty Cabaret!

Make a night of it: bring the kids to the Nice Cabaret, meet the sitter at home during the break, then come back for a glass of wine and be a little naughty with us.

 


AUDITIONS for Black Comedy and The Real Inspector Hound

Our February play will be one evening that includes two one-act farces: Black Comedy by Peter Shaffer, directed by Elizabeth Tracey and The Real Inspector Hound by Tom Stoppard, directed by Krista Neumann.
The shows will be performed Feb 13 & 14 at 7:30pm and Feb 15 at 2:00pm at the Coralville Center for the Performing Arts.
Rehearsals will start Jan 5, and will [usually] be Sun-Thurs evenings from 7:00pm-10:00pm.

Auditions will take place on Mon, Dec 15 and Tue, Dec 16 from 6:00-8:00pm at the Coralville Library.
Actors will be asked to read from the script – there is no need to prepare a monologue.
To secure an audition time, please fill out an Audition Form.  Walk-ins are welcome, but scheduled auditions will take priority.

Please note: If you’d like to audition, but cannot make these times, an alternate time can easily be set up.
Fill out an Audition Form, and you’ll be contacted to schedule an audition.

Both scripts are available online for perusal: Black Comedy  and The Real Inspector Hound

Below are character breakdowns for both plays.

BLACK COMEDY

BRINDSLEY MILLER: A young sculptor (mid-twenties), intelligent and attractive, but nervous and uncertain of himself.

CAROL MELKETT: His fancée. A young debutante; very pretty, very spoiled; very silly. Her sound is that unmistakable, terrifying deb quack.

MISS FURNIVAL: A middle-aged lady. Prissy and refined. Clad in the blouse and sack skirt of her gentility, her hair in a bun, her voice in a bun, she reveals only the repressed gestures of the middle-class spinster – until alcohol undoes her.

COLONEL MELKETT: CAROL’s commanding father. Brisk, barky, yet given to sudden vocal calms which suggest a deep and alarming instability. It is not only the constant darkness which gives him his look of wide-eyed suspicion.

HAROLD GORRINGE: The bachelor owner of an antique-china shop, and BRINDSLEY’s neighbour, HAROLD comes from the North of England. His friendship is highly conditional and possessive: sooner or later, payment for it will be asked. A specalist in emotionial blackmail, he can become hysterical when slighted, or (as inevitably happens) rejected. He is older than BRINDSLEY by several years.

SCHUPPANZIGH: A German refugee, chubby, cultivated, and effervescent. He is an entirely happy man, delighted to be in England, even if this means being employed full time by the London Electricity Board.

CLEA: BRINDSLEY’s ex-mistress. Mid-twenties; dazzling, emotional, bright and mischievous. The challenge to her to create a dramatic situation out of the darkness is ultimately irresistible.

GEORG BAMBERGER: An elderly millionaire art collector, easily identifiable as such. Like the Electrician, he is a German.

 

THE REAL INSPECTOR HOUND

Moon – a second-string theatre critic, called to the production to review it in the absence of Higgs, another critic. Moon’s jealousy of Higgs’ superior reputation seems to make him question his own purpose, with Moon’s ultimate thoughts being of Higgs’ death.

Birdboot – a theatre critic and a womaniser, who catapults young actresses to stardom by delivering dazzling reviews in return, we assume, for sexual favours. While married to Myrtle, he is having an affair with the actress who plays Felicity in the play within the play.

Higgs – the senior critic, Moon is his stand-in.

Puckeridge – the third-string theatre critic, or Moon’s stand-in. In early versions of the play, this character was called “McCafferty”.

Play-within-a-play characters
Mrs Drudge – The maid, or char, of Muldoon Manor. One of Stoppard’s primary vehicles for emphasising the satirical character of the story. Her cockney accent adds to the humour of Stoppard’s play.

Simon Gascoyne – New to the neighbourhood, Simon has had affairs with both Felicity and Cynthia. He takes an instant dislike to Magnus, as they are both in love with Cynthia. Later in the play, Birdboot assumes the role of Simon Gascoyne, and vice versa.

Felicity Cunningham – A beautiful, innocent, young friend of Cynthia’s who has had an affair with Simon and Birdboot. She is seemingly sweet and charming, but soon seeks ruthless revenge.

Cynthia Muldoon – Apparent widow of Lord Albert Muldoon who disappeared ten years ago. She claims to be very upset about her husband’s disappearance, but the audience is led to think otherwise. Sophisticated and beautiful. She has had an affair with Simon.

Major Magnus Muldoon – Lord Albert Muldoon’s crippled half-brother who just arrived from Canada. Has a desire for his late brother’s widow, Cynthia. Takes an instant dislike to Simon, as they are both in love with Cynthia.

Inspector Hound – Appears from outside the house in the middle of the play to investigate an alleged phone call. Moon assumes this role near the end of the play, and vice versa.

We look forward to seeing you at auditions!



The Cast of A Year with Frog and Toad

Director Elizabeth Tracey has cast our holiday musical, A Year with Frog and Toad.
We look forward to seeing the following on stage in December:

Joe Mosher as Frog
Ken Van Egdon as Toad
Renee Zukin as Man Bird, Lizard, Father Frog
Heidi Bibler as Lady Bird #1, Mouse, Mole
Katherine Boothroyd as Lady Bird #2, Turtle
Brett Borden as Snail
Kristina Rutkowski as Squirrel, Young Frog, Mole
Shelby Zukin as Squirrel, Mother Frog, Mole

Congratulations to the cast, and thanks to all who auditioned.

For more information on A Year with Frog and Toad, including show dates and ticket information, go to the Production page.


Barbara S. Lee Memorial Fund is Established

barbara leeCity Circle Founding Member Barbara S. Lee, 62, of North Liberty, died Sunday, September 7th, at her home following a courageous battle with cancer.

A vibrant and electric presence off-stage and on, Barb will be remembered for her feisty wit and soaring soprano, in addition to her years on the City Circle Board of Directors, where she served as Secretary.  Among her favorites roles was Jeanette, the hard talking piano player in The Full Monty–a role that she proudly costumed from her own closet–and a haughty but hysterical nun in Nunsense–a role that she proudly did not costume from her own closet.  Most poignantly, she portrayed a dancing bear confronting mortality in The Arkansaw Bear.  She particularly enjoyed the photography of her character from The Rocky Horror Show.

She was reminiscing about her theatrical past with many of the men from the Full Monty just one day before her passing, laughing and smiling, telling stories and correcting others when details were not in keeping with her memory.

She and her family have asked that donations be made in her memory to City Circle Acting Company of Coralville.