Jeanne Paulsen and Judith Hawking in the Denver Center Theatre Company’s world premiere production of “The Most Deserving.” The comedy will debut in NewYork on March 30. Casting has not yet been announced. Photo by Jennifer M Koskinen
By John Moore
News and notes from the 2014 Colorado New Play Summit:
The Most Deserving deserves New York:
The name of the game at the annual Colorado New Play Summit is to develop works that will have a continued life in the American theatre. Many of the 37 plays and commissions the Summit has propagated in its first nine years have had significant continued life - namely Samuel D. Hunter’s The Whale, Jason Grote’s 1001, Octavio Solis’ Lydia and others. Hopes are high for this season’s mainstage breakout hit, The Legend of Georgia McBride by Matthew Lopez.
From left: John Moore, Kendall Peterson of DIA, artist Rik Sargent and “The Most Deserving” actor Jeanne Paulsen. Photo by Janet Flesch.
Thanks to everyone who attended Sunday’s post-show panel discussion, “You Call That Art?” following the matinee performance of the Denver Center Theatre Company’s “The Most Deserving.” Panelists included Denver Center actor Jeanne Paulsen, DIA Art Program Manager Kendall Peterson and acclaimed Denver artist Rik Sargent. The moderator was the Denver Center’s John Moore.
In this new YouTube series, we briefly introduce you to the actors performing in our plays in a fun way. Episode 32: Sam Gregory, who plays the goateed British beatnik Ted Atkinson in the world-premiere comedy “The Most Deserving” through Nov. 17, 2013, in the Ricketson Theatre. That makes 40 plays for Gregory at the Denver Center since 2005. Call 303-893-4100 or go to www.denvercenter.org. Video by John Moore. Run time: 2 minutes, 27 seconds.
Coming next: Meet Timothy McCracken of “Jackie & Me.”
In this new YouTube series, we briefly introduce you to the actors performing in our plays in a fun way. Episode 28: Rebecca Hirota, who plays Liz Chang in the Denver Center Theatre Company’s world-premiere comedy “The Most Deserving.” Liz is an assistant art professor in a small west Kansas town who champions an outsider artist who makes sculptures out of trash. Through Nov. 17, 2013. Call 303-893-4100 or go to www.denvercenter.org. Video by John Moore. Run time: 2 minutes.
Coming next: Meet Denver native Mary Bacon of “The Most Deserving.”
Look who’s featured today in CultureWest’s ongoing “It’s Opening Night in Colorado” photo series! It’s our own Sam Gregory, one of the fearless (clearly) stars of the raucous new comedy about small-town art, “The Most Deserving,” playing through Nov. 17. Click here to see the whole photo series to date
In this new YouTube series, we briefly introduce you to the actors performing in our plays in a fun way. Episode 24: Jeanne Paulson, who plays Edie in the Denver Center Theatre Company’s world-premiere comedy “The Most Deserving” through Nov. 17, 2013, in The Ricketson Theatre. Call 303-893-4100 or go to www.denvercenter.org. Video by John Moore. Run time: 2 minutes, 20 seconds.
Coming next: Meet Steven Cole Hughes of “Just Like Us.”
Day two of the Denver Center Theatre Company’s eighth annual Colorado New Play Summit heated up just as the snow began to fall. An ensemble of six actors brought to comical life Catherine Trieschmann’s The Most Deserving.
Tasked with awarding $20,000 to a deserving and needy local artist who “demonstrates an underrepresented American voice,” a small town arts council in Ellis County, Kansas erupts into chaos. The collision of egos pushes aside the valuation of art based on merit as the local art council president refuses to consider an unconventional, ethnic artist whose religious art is made out of trash.
Sage philanthropist Edie observes that she “did not match the living fund grant so that everyone could act out their personal grievances,” but grieve they do. Liz, who holds a PhD in art history, teaches at the local community council and is a self-appointed advocate for the mentally-unstable African-American artist, challenges the nay sayers by questioning, “Isn’t great art supposed to provoke?” and is soundly refuted by Arts Council President Jolene who responds, “Not in Kansas.”
This satirical, insightful look at how the arts collide with politics, self-interest, taste, relationships, egos and gossip is ripe with one-liners, memorable dialogue and a fundamental question — how do you place a value on art?