of Saint McGonagall
Written by: Jessica Wright Buha*
November 29th – December 29th, 2012
at Berger Park Coach House
The Feast Of Saint McGonagall is an evening of magnificently bad recitations, heaven-sent revelations, epic perambulations, bad rhymes, unbelievable true stories, poet-baiting, fruit-throwing, sing-alongs, tragedy (personal and epic), and laughter celebrating the life and work of William McGonagall, widely considered the worst poet in the English language.
Featuring: Jack Dugan Carpenter*, James Dunn*, Amber Walker, Erika Haaland, Kristen T. King, Sara Jean McCarthy*, and Ken Miller
Directed by: Gregory Peters*
Stage Manager: Kit Ryan
Assistant Director: Kim Miller*
Lighting Designer: John Jacobsen
Technical Director & Scene Designer: Paul Kastner*
Production Manager: Chad Brown*
Props & Costume Designer: Bridget Barclay-Peters
Fight Choreographer: Christopher M. Walsh
Publicity Designer: Layne Manzer*
“Jessica Wright Buha’s script is dead-on: the perfect balance between enthusiastic mockery and admiration…. it’s enjoyable fare throughout, and a fine way to spend an evening. Lift a glass, wherever you are, to the dreamers of the world - to William McGonagall and the life of a poet.” – John Dalton, Centerstage Chicago
“The Plagiarists’ latest offering, The Feast of Saint McGonagall is a hilarious testament to the life of this notoriously bad poet… Every bit of the space is used and is cleverly transformed to fit the scene with the use of simple but effective sets and props… You will find yourself engrossed in the show and just a little more knowledgeable about English literature than perhaps you were. And, I do believe, fun will be had by all.” – Anuja Vaidya, Chicago Theatre Beat
Erika Haaland, Sara Jean McCarthy*, James Dunn*, Amber Walker, Jack Dugan Carpenter*, Kristen T. King, and Ken Miller. Photo by Jasmine Dunn.
Written by: Gregory Peters
March 6th – April 13th, 2013
at Red Tape Theatre
Matryoshka is 1,001 Nights as covered by 20th-century American pop culture, a manic gumbo of television, b-movies, and comic books, populated by gangsters, cops, super-scientists, zombies, demons, comedians, soldiers, hit men, detectives, femme fatales, fallen angels, knights, and wizards – all brought to life by a powerful ensemble of actresses… and one very terrifying man. On Fridays after Matryoshka, The Plagiarists hosted The Harlotry and Necromancy Appreciation Society, who presented their original piece, One of These Clowns is About to Die.
Featuring: Kara Davidson, Kristen T. King, Rachel Griesinger, Rachael Miller, Robert Montgomery, Mallory Nees, Angelica M. Roque, Jessica Saxvik, Julia Stemper, and Lisa Tosti.
Director: Jack Dugan Carpenter
Stage Manager: Shauna Warren
Assistant Stage Manager: Erin Outson
Technical Director: John Ofori
Assistant Director: Kit Ryan
Scenic Designer: Lauren Angelopoulos
Lighting Designer: John Jacobsen
Sound Designer: Melissa Schlesinger
Costume Designer: Emma Cullimore
Violence Designer: Orion Couling
“The first few minutes of the Plagiarists' production of Gregory Peters's new drama, a modern retelling of 1,001 Nights, rank among the most terrifying I've seen onstage. Sherry (a stunning Jessica Saxvik) wakes up bound in the basement of a serial killer, whose previous victims have turned up dead after weeks of torture. As he sets silently about his business, she launches into a story about a wiseguy and a watermelon seed. Suddenly we're inside a clever, kaleidoscopic tunnel of tall tales, acted out by Sherry, the serial killer, and his eight previous victims. The stories, which borrow from urban legends and genre fiction, are smart, funny, and captivating—but never so polished that their thread of desperation disappears entirely. Jack Dugan Carpenter directs a mesmerizing cast.” —Keith Griffith, The Chicago Reader (Recommended Review)
“Gregory Peters’ story-within-a-story structure consistently charms; each sequence is explored just enough to satisfy before the thread reveals another narrative. The ensemble is fluid and adventurous; half of the fun of the show is the infectious enthusiasm and energy the performers bring to the text. Director Jack Dugan Carpenter masters the swift pacing necessary to keep the stories interesting; his utilitarian staging exploits Lauren Angelopoulos’ grimy, functional set to its fullest. Each story is successfully suggested, not recreated. It’s an evening dedicated to an ancient tradition with a postmodern twist.” – Lisa Buscani, NewCity Stage (Recommended Review)
Video trailer for the production by Chad Brown*.