Single sets and small casts abound in the regions as Proof, Dirty Blonde and Copenhagen top the list of the most-produced plays this season across the country according to American Theatre, a Theatre Communications Group's publication.
In the compilation by the national organization, David Auburn's Pulitzer Prize- and Tony Award-winning drama Proof — which enlists a cast of four and a single set — nearly doubled its nearest competitor at 29 productions. Three-actor plays Dirty Blonde by Claudia Shear and Tony Award winner Copenhagen by Michael Frayn ranked second and third with 15 and 14 productions, respectively.
Solo shows like Becky Mode's Fully Committed (with 12 stagings) and David Sedaris'The Santaland Diaries (with 10) still position well at fourth and fifth. Perhaps the HBO film inspired some regional theatres to try their hand at Moisés Kaufman and The Tectonic Theater Project's The Laramie Project, placing it in sixth with nine productions.
The remainder of the list included a number of productions that were tied. In seventh place, at eight productions, were Keythe Farley-Brian Flemming-Laurence O'Keefe's Bat Boy: The Musical, Michael Healey's The Drawer Boy and Kenneth Lonergan's Lobby Hero. The music-infused My Way: A Musical Tribute to Frank Sinatra and August Wilson's The Piano Lesson each placed eighth with 7 shows apiece. Ninth place was shared by five works including William Gibson's The Miracle Worker, Neil LaBute's The Shape of Things, Fred Alley and James Valcq's musical The Spitfire Grill, The Triumph of Love and The Best Christmas Pageant Ever. Closing out the list at tenth is a six-play tie, all at 5 stagings, between Ain't Misbehavin'; Hedwig and the Angry Inch; I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change; Mrs. Warren's Profession; Smokey Joe's Café and The Three Sisters.
TCG did not take into consideration the countless productions of the exhausted classics of William Shakespeare or the numerous adaptations of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol. Further down the list are noted work by playwrights George Bernard Shaw, Anton Chekhov and Edward Albee. The complete top ten (and their ranking, if any, from last season) follows:
1. Proof (4th last season) - 29
2. Dirty Blonde (10th) - 15
3. Copenhagen (10th) - 14
4. Fully Committed (7th) - 12
5. The Santaland Diaries (7th) - 10
6. The Laramie Project (2nd) - 9
- Bat Boy: The Musical - 8
- The Drawer Boy - 8
- Lobby Hero - 8
- My Way: A Musical Tribute to Frank Sinatra (9th) - 7
- The Piano Lesson - 7
- The Miracle Worker - 6
- The Shape of Things - 6
- The Spitfire Grill - 6
- The Triumph of Love - 6
- The Best Christmas Pageant Ever - 6
- Ain't Misbehavin' - 5
- Hedwig and the Angry Inch - 5
- I Love You, You're Perfect, Now Change (6th) - 5
- Mrs. Warren's Profession - 5
- Smokey Joe's Café - 5
- The Three Sisters - 5