Author Rob's director's notes call this "the entirely fictionalized history of how Summer Circle Theatre began." It features circular plot-lines around a circle of friends, a circle of a a lake, the circle of the seasons and the circular cycle of creating and dissolving of the "families" created by theatre — and summer cottages.
With a change of hat or scarf, Mandy Myers became "Mother" in four different families. "Scotty" (Andrew Head) was a powerhouse of boyish charm, energy and enthusiasm as he made the great compromise of befriending... Girls - and a diverse selection of them: (I hope I'm getting the right names matched with the characters; they each did a great job bringing a childlike sincerity to their "type:") the overdramatic Sharon (Anna Morreale), the studious Gertrude (Madelayne Shammas), and the beautiful princess Laurinda (Katherine Schooler).
Laurinda seemed to be the clone of my princess granddaughter; they were even wearing the same tiered-tulle ballet skirt and t-shirt in pink and blue. She was the "actress" and "beautiful girl" star of every skit. Others took on script writing, props, directing, special effects... illustrating how theatre teaches important social lessons of cooperation, creativity and inclusion.
The show runs only an hour and plays Fridays and Saturdays at 6:30 pm, before the main 8pm show at Summer Circle. I heartily recommend it -- even if you don't have children to bring. You'll get there early and be able to claim the best seats for the following "adult" show - and be thoroughly entertained and inspired by this "appetizer".
The Summer Circle continues 6/20, 6/21, 6/27, 6/28 @ 6:30 PM and is appropriate for all ages.
Don't miss the rest of Summer Circle -- FREE outdoors next to the Auditorium building on Farm Lane at MSU; park in the lot on Auditorium Lane. Bring blankets, folding chairs and/or sit on the bleachers.
The second mainstage production is one of today’s most celebrated and controversial plays, Detroit by Lisa d’Amour. Ben and Mary see sudden signs of life in the deserted house next door. When they meet the new neighbors they become caught in an urban nightmare adventure that will change their lives. (Runs 6/18-21 @ 8 PM appropriate for mature audiences only.)
The season ends with the hilarious musical Ruthless by Marvin Laird and Joel Paley. This campy musical spoofs “The Bad Seed”, “All About Eve”, “Gypsy”, “Valley of the Dolls” and more as it tells the story of possibly homicidal eight year old Tina Denmark and her desperation to play Pippi Longstocking in the school musical. (Runs 6/25-28 @ 8 PM appropriate for all ages.)
The late night offering is The Weird by one of today’s hottest playwrights Roberto Aguirre Sacasa. It is a collection of short one-acts devoted to horror and suspense with visits from swamp creatures, vampires and Rosemary’s baby. Spooky fun. (Performs 6/13, 6/14, 6/20, 6/21, 6/27, 6/28 @ 10:00 PM approximately and is appropriate for ages 14 and older)