Saturday, July 28, 2007

Meh, To Punitive Candy!

Ben's Saturday Fun-Time Diversionary Activity! See which of the following anagrams match with the names of UNCO members?

1. Oral Rust Bear
2. Hark, Bert! Reno!
3. Ranch Wad on Fran
4. Real Sex? Fie.
5. Ban Razzle Chex, is it, Mr. T?
6. Riffle Yum!
7. Kill Toaster? No!
8. Rent? Broke. Deny!
9. OK, Jed, Leer on!
10. Beer N' Mange
11. Lenore Lulls Cons
12. All Get A Cheer
13. Honda Lemons
14. Jade Ravens.
15. Belch, Shanty Mimes!
16. Um, Panda Lamp?

1. Laura Roberts, 2. Karen Borchert 3. Hannah Crawford 4. Alex Fisher 5. Max (Christian) Herzl-Betz 6. Emily Ruff 7. Allison Koster 8. Robert Kennedy 9. Joe Knoedler 10. Ben Egerman 11. Russell O'Connell 12. Rachel Teagle (alternate: The Carl Eagle) 13. Hal Edmonson 14. Jared Evans 15. Bethany Schimmel 16. Amanda Plump

Thursday, July 26, 2007

The Photographs of Being Earnest

The Importance of Being Earnest

Here are a bunch of backstage and onstage photos of our recent production of "The Importance of Being Earnest." Thank you to everyone who came to see it!

Theater is a lot like Greatness. Some are born with it, some achieve it, and some have it thrust upon them. The production of “The Importance of Being Earnest” used those born with great abilities (whether it be piano playing, acting, painting, or just looking hot in a maid outfit) and thrust at them the doable yet strenuous task of putting on this show in two weeks. This truly was the culmination of my theatre experience. I can’t help but feel as if all the shows I’ve done these past three years were somehow leading to this, these two weeks. We did “Earnest,” we did one of my favorite plays ever, and now it’s over and it’s as if there is a small part of me left behind with it.

I’ll never be able to express how deeply grateful I am to have had such a dedicated and talented group of people to make this dream come true, but I suppose sappy blog posts are a step in the right direction.


Saturday, July 21, 2007

Earnest, Potter, and Photos

Three successful shows of The Importance of Being Earnest down, one more to go. Yes, you can still catch the show Sunday night at 8:00 in Arena Theater. We had an almost full house tonight, which was wonderful.

Our Friday audience was a little diminished by the Harry Potter extravaganza downtown. It seemed like the whole town was there. A bunch of us went down to check out the scene and get our books.

Not even Knockturn Aley could frighten our stalwart Company Directors!

In other news, Emily Ruff took a bunch of great pictures of us getting ready for our shows. They've been compiled into an album lovingly titled:
UNdressing Room

And we've added a bunch of All My Sons pictures, and there are more to come!
All My Sons

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

UnCOoks: The Dessert

I may not live in the UnCo household, but I will still be making dessert for everyone next week. I am a total peanut butter addict, so I thought I'd share my Aunt Mary's Peanut Butter Ball Recipe, but I won't mention which brands I use, because then everyone would be able to make them as well as I do. I'm far too proud for that to ever happen.

Peanut Butter Balls

3 tbsp butter
1 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup peanut butter

Mix ingredients until smooth and creamy. Roll into balls (preferably 1/2 the size of a ping pong ball) and put in freezer to harden. While they cool, melt milk chocolate in a double boiler (Don't go cheap on your chocolate, semi-sweet morsels taste awful). Once the chocolate has melted, drop in the peanut butter balls. Put them on a plate covered in wax paper/aluminum foil. Put in freezer to cool.

Monday, July 16, 2007

The Vital Importance of Being Earnest

As the hats clearly indicate, we're up and running with Oscar Wilde's wonderfully witty "The Importance of Being Earnest."

And we've added a fourth show, so you can come and watch us prance about in hats this Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday night at 8:00 PM in Carleton's Arena Theater.

Reservations can be made by calling our reservation line (507) 646-4439 or by emailing us at

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

All My Sons: A Retrospective

I really can't believe it's over--after three weeks of intensive rehearsals and work, it all boiled down to three days of performance and suddenly, we're on to Earnest. I think that as a director, I focused so much on fitting as much rehearsal time into a few weeks that the actual performance dates sort of snuck up on me. But, sure enough, thursday, friday and saturday found me seated in the back row, right next to my skilled co-director, Arika, watching as our talented cast and crew made magic on stage.

Or at least, that's what we did half the time. A little secret about directors that I've found is that when we watch our own productions, we aren't always watching the show--rather, we do the best we can to keep our eyes on the stage while focusing our attention on the audience and how they're reacting. And so, night after night, we watched as people laughed, cringed, and cried along with the performances. Afterwards, friends and acquaintences congratulated cast, directors and crew alike for creating such a wonderful show.

But the most touching response came from people who almost none of us even know--the majority of our audience, senior citizens from the town of Northfield. Arika and I watched in disbelief as night after night, we saw older members of our audience in tears by the end of the show. Now, normally, I would feel bad about making old people cry, but this seemed a bit different. After the show, one man explained that he remembers his many friends who were veterans and was touched by how accurately Jared Evans had portrayed the same conflicts he remembered onstage. The more people who talked to us, the more we were made aware of how we had touched people. Making such an impression on an audience with so much more experience with the period the play took place in and the issues it deals with, an audience so much different than what we are all used to in UNCO, is something that we're all proud of.


Thursday, July 5, 2007

Opening Night!!

All My Sons opens tonight, and boy are we excited!

Or at least Jared Evans is, as indicated by the photo at right.

After a few harried weeks of rehearsal and set building and light hanging, it's finally time for our inaugural show of the return of UNCO. We've been lucky enough to have gotten some press coverage recently. There was a great article in the Northfield News last week, and we made the front of the Carleton website.

Now for a few photographs:

The stalwart directors of All My Sons, Ben Egerman and Arika Garg, contemplate their next move during rehearsal in the Green Room.

The finished stage floor.

The "lawn" was painted with feather dusters on a stick.

Rachel and Karen sponged the path. As you can see, it made them very happy.

And here's the cast on the finished set! From left to right: Hal Edmonson as Joe Keller, Rachel Teagle as Ann Deever, Jared Evans as Chris Keller, Jenny Gibbins as Kate Keller, and Max Herzl-Betz as Jim Bayliss.

We also took a few pictures of the hail storm a few days ago. Several of our company members had never seen one before.

Especially not one with golf-ball sized hail.

But, inclement weather aside, we're ready to put on a fantastic show this weekend. House opens at 7:30, show starts at 8.
Hope to see you there.