Thursday, February 22, 2018
Stage

Based on a true story, 'The Guys' follows rebuilding after Sept. 11

SOMBER REMINDER: THE GUYS

A New York firefighter captain calls a newspaper editor after the Sept. 11 terror attacks, asking for help preparing eulogies for the men he lost. The Guys, which journalist Anne Nelson based on a true story, took just nine days to write. Jobsite Theater performed the show in 2003 and has renewed it periodically with husband-and-wife actors Paul and Roz Potenza, including this weekend in Clearwater.

"To me, the show has less to do with Sept. 11 but more to do with the aftermath," director Shawn Paonessa told the Times. "What's more relevant is that drastic changes of Sept. 12."

Paonessa doesn't think the show has aged; if anything, present conflicts only deepen its meaning, he said.

"I think it's a really good reminder of the humanity that is still there within us," Paonessa said. "And I don't know how much of that is still there The community is still there. But I think we have forgotten that the humanity is there." 7:30 p.m. Saturday, 3 p.m. Sunday, and 1 p.m. Monday at Ruth Eckerd Hall, Murray Theatre 1111 N McMullen-Booth Road, Clearwater. $24, $12 students. (727) 791-7400. rutheckerdhall.com.

SURVEILLANCE CHIC: NAMELESS NUMBERHEAD

Henry Riggs and Maari Suorsa met working with an improv troupe in Chicago. Five years later, they moved to Charleston, S.C.

"We started to get to that point where all of our friends were moving to New York or Los Angeles to try and take the next step in their careers," Riggs told the Charleston Post and Courier. "We felt like we were still exploring what that was for us, so we decided to move somewhere smaller where it would be easier to create a brand and rally the support of the community."

It turned out to be an inspired move. Nameless Numberhead, their two-person troupe, has been performing at fringe festivals and other venues around the country. Described as "something between surveillance chic and voyeurism of the mundane," they produce sketches intended to serve as a "lesson on society." 8 p.m. Sept. 13. Spitfire Theater, 14 18th St. S, St. Petersburg. $10. spitfiretheater.com.

AUDITIONS: HAT TRICK THEATRE

Hat Trick Theatre, the resident theater company at Ruth Eckerd Hall, is casting this weekend for its third season. Actors should dress to move comfortably (avoid jeans, skirts, heels or flip-flops). Come with a resume and one-minute monologue (no longer or you'll get cut off).

The season opens with Night of the Living Dead (Oct. 26-Nov. 5; five men, four women). What the Bellhop Saw (March 8-18) calls for eight men and four women. The season closes out with Waiting for Godot (May 17-27; four men, one boy). Hat Trick offers a small stipend for performances but does not pay Equity contracts. Auditions are scheduled in hourlong blocks between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. Saturday at Ruth Eckerd Hall's Murray Theater, 1111 N McMullen-Booth Road, Clearwater. facebook.com/HatTrickTheatre/.

DRINK TO THAT: BROADWAY BENT

Aaron Washington and Keith Eisenstadt came up with the concept — a musical revue celebrating villains, only in a clubby atmosphere. Admission includes an open bar. In another twist, the actors and characters swap genders.

Broadway Bent debuted in February at the Carrollwood Cultural Center. It was so popular, Washington and Eisenstadt have brought the show back this weekend, with return engagements in February and August next year.

"We wanted to give the theater audience a party atmosphere while being entertained," Washington said. Selections include songs from The Wiz, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Bring It On: The Musical and Hamilton. 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the Carrollwood Cultural Center, 13345 Casey Road, Tampa. $30. (813) 922-8167. carrollwoodcenter.org.

FLORIDA ORCHESTRA: MESSIAH

Tickets are now on sale for the Florida Orchestra's holiday concert, Handel's Messiah. The orchestra is going huge to celebrate its 50th season, opening with Carl Orff's Carmina Burana (Oct. 6-8), bringing in Sting for its fundraising gala (Dec. 9) and bringing back 14-year music director Jahja Ling to guest conduct (Jan. 6-7).

Messiah should fit right into that mold. Music director Michael Francis will lead the orchestra, the Master Chorale of Tampa Bay and probably the audience (which could climb as high as 10,000 in three large venues) in the Hallelujah chorus. 8 p.m. Dec. 21, Idlewild Baptist Church, 18333 Exciting Idlewild Blvd., Lutz. 8 p.m. Dec. 22, Mahaffey Theater, 400 First St. S, St. Petersburg. 8 p.m. Dec. 23, First Baptist Indian Rocks, 12685 Ulmerton Road, Largo. (727) 892-3337. floridaorchestra.org.

   
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