Billboard Launches Debate Over Beauty Obsession in Impenetrable
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The last date listed for Impenetrable was Sunday October 7, 2012 / 3:00pm.
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The high-stakes world of middle-school spelling competitions takes center stage in The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. This musical comedy follows six overachieving would-be wordsmiths and their neurotic parents. The hilariously catchy songs capture teenage troubles at their worst, from "Woe Is Me" to "My Unfortunate Erection (Chip's Lament)." And the contest teaches the valuable lesson that winning isn't the only definition of success. With music and lyrics by William Finn and a book by Rachel Sheinkin, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee was nominated for Best Musical and five other Tony Awards in its original run, winning for Best Book. Learn More
Reviews & Ratings
Featured review from Melo1too
view more less of this review
Definitely a must see for everyone~young, old, male, female. Realistic, poignant view on our ideals of beauty. Enjoyed the way the monologues intertwined with one another and how they took you back in time to tell the story for different points of view. Remarkable.
Quotes & Highlights
- “Slicing and poignant… a series of charged encounters ... a terrific Jennifer Pompa is vulnerable and bold in equal measures.” --Chicago Tribune
- “[A] smart and spirited world premiere work... a snappy production by Stage Left Theatre… expertly directed by Greg Werstler.” --Chicago Sun-Times
- “A drama at once disturbing, insightful and unexpectedly humorous ... Derleth delivers a nuanced mix of strength and vulnerability; Pompa walks away with every scene she’s in, covering depths of hurt with defensive, self-deprecating humor.” --Chicago Theater Beat
- “Derleth serves as a strong emotional anchor, playing Talya with a steely confidence that shields her vulnerable soul. As a bitter barista trapped in the ’burbs, scene-stealer Jennifer Pompa gets the best one-liners, but is equally sharp during intimate dramatic scenes.” --Time Out Chicago
This show has some stronge language and references to violence. It's recommended for those age 12 and older.
In line with its mission to raise social and political debate, Stage Left offers patrons a Symposium Series for every production. Immediately following each Sunday matinee, they invite the audience to stay for a discussion centered on a particular question raised by the performance. Admission to the Symposium Series is free, but it is recommended that attendees have seen the production in order to fully appreciate and participate in the discussion. Impenetrable raises debate about responsibility of the advertising media, biases based on appearance, and the ramifications that a popular culture which glorifies youth and beauty has on our own self image.
About Playwright Mia McCullough
Born and raised in New York, Mia McCullough has been writing plays in Chicago for 20 years. After migrating to Chicagoland to study theatre and creative writing, Mia opted to stay and make Chicago her artistic home. Her plays have been produced in Chicago at Steppenwolf Theatre Company (Taking Care and Spare Change), Chicago Dramatists (Lucinda's Bed and Since Africa), and Stage Left Theatre (Spare Change, Echoes of Another Man, Chagrin Falls, Cyber Serenade) where she was an ensemble member for many years. Nationally, Mia’s plays have been produced at theatres such as The Old Globe in San Diego, Actor’s Express in Atlanta, Victory Theatre in Los Angeles, InterAct in Philadelphia, and the Cincinnati Shakespeare Festival.
About Director Greg Werstler
Greg Werstler’s Stage Left directing credits include The Eight: Reindeer Monologues, After Ashley, Ruby Vector (LeapFest 6), The Face of a Ruined Woman (LeapFest 7) and Blessed Assurance (Leapfest 8). Greg has worked as a theater administrator and director in Chicago for more than 15 years. He is the Director of Creative Sales, CFO of The ComedySportz Theatre. Other directing credits include ComedySportz Crew Meets: Snow White, and ComedySportz Crew Meets: Winnie the Pooh, also Rumors and Loveliest Afternoon for Eclipse Theatre Company, Voice of the Prairie and The Eight for Dolphinback Theatre (of which he was a founding member), A Midsummer Night’s Dream for Equity Library Theatre and Angels in America at Lake Forest College.
The cast includes SLT ensemble member Melanie Derleth (Thalya) and guest artists Emi Clark (Julie), Kamal Hans (Mourad), Jennifer Pompa (Andie), Kyle Johnson (Pete) and Kayla Rea (Cari)
The staff includes SLT ensemble members John Kohn III (lighting design) and Adam Smith (sound design) with guest artists Jason Crutchfield (stage management), Kristin Toerpe (production management), Roger Wykes (scenic design), Erica Griese (costume design), Anna Henson (projections design), Rick Julien (technical direction), Lindsay Bartlett (dialect coach), and Amy Szerlong (assistant direction).
About the Ticket Supplier: Stage Left Theatre
Founded in 1982, Stage Left Theatre is a non-profit organization whose mission is to develop and produce plays that raise debate and challenge perspectives on political and social issues. Over the past thirty years, Stage Left has produced over 120 mainstage, late-night, off-night, children's and touring productions that have garnered critical accolades, as well as 41 nominations and 16 awards for excellence from the Joseph Jefferson Awards Committee.