“The Spiral Staircase” and “A Merry Adventure of Robin Hood” are the two very different theatrical productions being presented by Phoenix Repertory Players this June.
A Hitchcock-style psychological thriller, “The Spiral Staircase” is based on the classic black-and-white film from 1945. It is a departure for the not-for-profit theatre company, which has often produced comedies and family-friendly fairytales, such as last fall’s “Sleeping Beauty.”
“We wanted to give our older teenage actors the opportunity to work with a small cast on a more serious dramatic script,” said director Noelle Beaver. “At the same time, we were able to offer many of our younger actors more substantial roles and meaningful training in our fun, lighthearted production of ‘A Merry Adventure of Robin Hood.’ ”
“The Spiral Staircase” unfolds in the early 1900s in a small New England town, where residents are alarmed at the news of a murder in their quiet town. The unsettling tale is focused on the reactions of the Warren household – old bedridden Mrs. Warren, her young mute companion Helen, her professor stepdaughter, the professor’s assistant, an abusive nurse, and a housekeeper who comforts herself with a nip of brandy whenever she can get it.
Period costumes and a detailed set help bring the story to life June 9-11 at McCafferty Hall on the campus of Southwestern Assemblies of God University, 1200 Sycamore. The production is recommended for about ages 13 and up.
“A Merry Adventure of Robin Hood” is adapted from Howard Pyle’s 1883 classic book, as well as the older Robin Hood ballads. Young audiences are sure to be entertained as a cast of kids ages 4 to 14 share this active tale of stolen gold, sword fighting, innocent victims and funny disguises. The community is invited to watch Robin and his familiar Merry Men – Friar Tuck, Little John and more – have a battle of wits and weapons with their equally familiar opponents, the Sheriff of Nottingham and his evil supporters.
The show will last about half an hour. Performances are scheduled for 2 p.m. June 11 at McCafferty Hall, SAGU; 11 a.m. June 13 at DeSoto Town Center outdoor theatre, 211 E. Pleasant Run Road, DeSoto; 2 p.m. June 14 at Nicholas P. Sims Library lyceum, 515 W. Main St.; and 7 p.m. June 16 at Red Oak Municipal Center, 200 Lakeview Parkway, Red Oak.
Admission is free to both productions, but donations are accepted at the door. All donations go towards covering the cost of these and future productions of Phoenix Repertory Players.
Phoenix Repertory Players is especially geared to providing a high-quality theatrical opportunity to students who may not have ready access to theater within their schooling situation. While participation is open to students from a variety of school backgrounds, these two casts happen to be comprised of home-educated students. These two productions are, in effect, their school plays – and the company would very much appreciate the chance to share its hard work with the entire community.
For more information, see http://sites.google.com/site/phoenixrepertoryplayers/ or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.