Actual people and events from Seattle's shady past are at the heart of Bootlegger, a new musical debuting Mar. 19 at Issaquah's Village Theatre.
The show, which was workshopped by the theatre in 1996, is told through vaudeville-flavored flashbacks by one Gracie La Verne, a former chorus girl, who recalls events in the "Roaring Twenties" which led to the arrest of the charming Capt. Roy Olmstead, a staunch prohibition proponent, on charages of selling bootlegged liquor.
Olmstead, his wife, Elsie, and former Seattle mayors Edwin "Doc Brown" and Bertha Landes are among the real-life Seattleites who are portrayed in the play. As author/composer/ lyricist Bruce Monroe notes, "Their actions have been freely fictionalized as I explore the idea that real history exists somewhere between what is written down and what is remembered."
Bootlegger is directed and choreographed by Steve Tomkins, with musical direction by Jeff Caldwell.
The show is scheduled to run Mar. 19-April 26 (following a preview on Mar. 18). Performances are Wed.-Sat. at 8 p.m. and Sun. at 2 PM, with some Sat. 2 PM matinees and Sun. 7 PM performances (call for exact dates). The Village's mainstage Francis J. Gaudette theatre is at 303 Front St. N., in Issaquah. For tickets, $18-$24, call (425) 392-2202. -- By David-Edward Hughes