Resurrection Theatre wants to love its shows—and they want you to love them, too
What happens when you select plays for a theatrical season based on pitches from local directors? You’re about to find out, as Resurrection Theatre kicks off its second season with plays that all turned out to be about the way we see the world.
“Things came out of the woodwork differently,” said Alysha S. Krumm, “One play was presented scholastically, and another was practically thrown at us, but the season came together organically.”
Krumm co-founded Resurrection Theatre with Margaret Morneau in 2010. The two had worked together in Beyond the Proscenium, and decided to start a new company when BYP closed.
“What I liked was that people who pitched shows were also extremely passionate about that particular show,” said Morneau. “It’s hard to direct when you’re not in love. It’s like a homework assignment, and we wanted people to really love the work.”
You might expect that it would lead to a rather disjointed collection of plays, but instead, what Krumm and Morneau found was that the plays all seemed to be concerned with how perspective affects perception.
Krumm describes the season as being “stories that broaden our perspectives as humans.”
And to that end, the first show up will certainly challenge perceptions: Krumm will direct John Patrick Shanley’s Doubt, a play that uses the possible molestation of an altar boy by a young priest in an early-1960s parochial school as a point of departure to look at the difference between believing and knowing, between certainty and doubt. Of course, as it’s a play by John Patrick Shanley, Doubt also manages to raise questions about experience vs. naiveté, race, gender and hierarchy.
And that’s just the season opener, which Krumm will direct.
Resurrection has also added some contributing artists this year, which the principals hope will continue their growth.
“We started with $900, a can of paint and a prayer,” said Krumm. “We went from having four people in the audience for Burn This to selling out 12 shows of An Adult Evening of Shel Silverstein in one year.”
To keep that momentum going, Jeffrey Lloyd Heatherly has joined the company as the technical director. Coming on board as associate producers are Laura White and Joshua Glenn Robertson, and Joelle Robertson will step into the role of director of outreach starting in 2012.
“Our goals are consistency, production control and top-notch design,” said Krumm.
Heatherly was even more specific. “There needs to be a consistently high aesthetic across the whole production. Just because the acting is great, don’t ignore the set.”
The lineup will give the troupe a workout this year. After Doubt comes William Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet¸ adapted and directed by Nina Collins Breton, in February. In March, Shawn B. O’Neal will direct Jane Martin’s Talking With … followed by Sarah Ruhl’s Dead Man’s Cell Phone, directed by Jouni Kirjola in May.
Then, for the big one: Balm in Gilead, the Lanford Wilson play, which will be directed by Michael R.J. Campbell.
Krumm and Morneau see this show as a tribute to their local theater roots.
“So many people from Beyond the Proscenium wanted to do this show, and we were never able to do it,” said Morneau. “This is a way to bring together our roots with BYP and our new theatrical family at Resurrection.”
“We have really wonderful people here, and we want everyone to come play with us,” said Krumm.