The Blank Theatre has earned a reputation for quality theatre in Los Angeles with its award-winning, sell-out Hello Again and its annual Young Playwrights Festival. In 2002, for the first time, the theatre will become a subscription house, presenting a three-play season. Among the offerings: Michael John LaChuisa's First Lady Suite and the world premiere of Jonathan Tolins' Secrets of the Trade.
The company's lucky charm LaChiusa (of Hello Again) kicks off the season with his First Lady Suites March 7-April 14. Daniel Henning directs the four-part look at various First Ladies and the people who surrond them. "Over Texas" visits the Secretaries of Jacqueline and John F. Kennedy as they fly into Dallas on November 22nd, 1963. In "Where's Mamie?" Mamie Eisenhower travels through time and space to warn her husband off an affair and of the upcoming racial strife of his presidency. The comic "Olio" features Margaret Truman attempting to sing at a recital while she is constantly interrupted by Lady Bess. The final piece, "Eleanor Sleeps Here," finds Eleanor Roosevelt and Lorena Hickok flying over Washington with Amelia Earhart. Henning and LaChiusa are making adjustments to the show, including the addition of an opening and closing number to frame the piece.
First Lady Suite was first presented Off-Broadway at the Public Theatre in December, 1993. Other LaChuisa musicals include Marie Christine and The Wild Party.
Jonathan Tolins is known for his Twilight of the Golds and If Memory Serves. Oct. 17-Nov. 24, the Blank premieres his Secreats of the Trade. In the comedy, 16 year old Andrew Lipman writes a letter to his idol, famous Broadway director Martin Kerner, and forever changes his life and the lives of his family.
The second entry, running Aug. 1-Sept. 8 has not been announced. For subscription information, call (323) 661-9827. The Blank Theatre Company is on the web at http://www.theblank.com.
The Blank Theatre Company is known for its recent productions of The Why, Starr Struck: A Musical Investigation and Hello Again as well as its artistic producer, TV's Noah Wylie. The Los Angeles-based company was founded in 1990.
— By Christine Ehren