After collaborating on 2000's successful Summertime, playwright Charles Mee (Big Love) and director Ken Watt will reunite at the Magic Theatre to create a companion piece, Wintertime, thanks to a National Theatre Artist Residency Program grant given to San Francisco's Magic Theatre. Wintertime will be presented in the theatre's 2001 02 season.
No word yet on what Wintertime's subject will be, but Summertime was an extended hit at the Magic. Set in and around a garden terrace, that play's characters wander in and out of a series of scenes, as each expresses and discovers his or her relations to the others while facing questions of sexual identity, beauty and other cultural norms. The play becomes more confusing, more comic and more heartbreaking as the couplings become clearer and more interwoven.
Summertime was workshopped at the Magic in 1999 in collaboration with The Fifth Floor ensemble and with a mingling of disabled and non disabled actors, in order to further debate American ideals of attractiveness and sexual desire.
Mee, a playwright, historian and editor, also penned Another Person is a Foreign Country, Trojan Women: A Love Story, The Berlin Circle (directed by Tina Landau), and Orestes.
Watt, noted for his avant-garde style, founded both the Encore Theatre Company and The Fifth Floor. His productions have included works at the Actor's Theatre of Louisville with Ann Bogart, American Repertory Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, and California Shakespeare Festival. — By Christine Ehren