You won't be seeing any ads for The Group Theatre's World Premiere production of Carlos Murillo's Never Whistle While You're Pissing in either of Seattle's daily papers for the next couple of weeks.
According to Rigby Biddle, publicist for the theatre "The Seattle Post-Intelligencer and The Seattle Times advertising departments objected to the word 'Pissing' in the title. They were willing to re-design the ad and run the word in tiny type, but we told them, "No thanks, we'll take our money back." We are redesigning an ad which will run with the title reading Never Whistle While You're P!@&*$! instead."
Meanwhile, the arts sections of both newspapers -- which function editorially independent of each other editorially -- are running feature articles on the play, which will not suppress the offending word.
The title phrase is a wartime adage warning soldiers to remain alert and not to draw attention to themselves. The title has been cited as a factor in the play being pulled from consideration at several theatres nationwide. Playwright Murillo--winner of the 1996 National Hispanic Playwrighting Award -- has gone on record that he is pleased with the extra time that has given him to develop the script, and the opportunity to work with this production's director, Jose Carrasquillo, Artistic director of The Group Theatre.
N.W.W.Y.P. is described as a satirical thriller in which a young man races against fate in an attempt to solve the mystery that threatens to unravel his family. The cast features Alex Balderrama, Mark Dias, Kate Fleming, Kimberly Helms, Daniel Luna, Olga Sanchez and Jos Viramontes.
Previews are Jan. 24 & 25, opening on Jan. 27-Feb. 22. The Group theatre is located on the lower level of the Center House (East Entrance), Seattle Center, 305 Harrison St. For tickets ($15-Previews; $20-$22 regular run) call (206)441-1299.
-- By David-Edward Hughes