By SUE SUCHYTA
If you’d ever been pushed to the edge by a roommate with an opposite personality, you won’t want to miss the humor and hilarity of the Southgate Community Players production of the Neil Simon comedy “The Odd Couple.”
The show runs 8 p.m. Feb. 5, 6, 12 and 13 at Davidson Middle School, 15800 Trenton Road in Southgate.
Tickets are $15, with a $2 discount for students and seniors. To order, call 734-282-4727 or go to scponstage.com.
When Felix Unger is thrown out by his wife, his divorced buddy Oscar Madison lets him stay with him. However, Felix is a neat-freak, and Oscar is a slob. Poker night is forever changed, and their double date with two eccentric sisters will leave you laughing.
Directed by Jema McCardell of Trenton, the show features Chris Rollet of Southgate as Oscar Madison and Marc Rosati of Wyandotte as Felix Unger.
The poker buddies include Chuck Ingram of Wyandotte as Murray the cop, and Trenton residents Patrick Reed as Roy, Nick Castle as Speed and Michael Lomas as Vinnie.
Playing the Pigeon sisters are Lara Keathley of Trenton as Cecily and Brigette Clements of Flat Rock as Gwendolyn.
McCardell said Simon is her favorite playwright, and she enjoys his humor.
“This is a classic Neil Simon,” McCardell said. “People of an age who watched it on TV know what’s coming next.
“The enjoyable thing is seeing the slightly different flavors, the way the different actors bring out the characters in slightly different ways than they may have seen the famous people do.”
McCardell said the show is hilarious and the cast is phenomenal.
“From day one everybody has been completely sold on their character, completely sold on doing the show well,” she said. “It’s just going to be a tight show.”
McCardell said the show is set in its original time period in the sixties.
“I just feel like a lot of the humor is lost when you try to bring it forward,” she said. “The suicide telegram just won’t translate to a text.”
She said rehearsals have been entertaining.
“Every rehearsal somebody different makes me laugh in a different place than they did before,” she said.
Adding to the laughter is Rosati, who has played Felix before, for the Players Guild of Dearborn and the Downriver Actors Guild in Wyandotte.
He said he enjoys Felix’s idiosyncrasies.
“I wouldn’t say I am kind of a Felix, but I just find him fascinating to play,” he said. “It’s just a challenge to play, and I try to play him differently every time. I don’t like to keep it the same – it would bore me.”
He said he is more like an gregarious Oscar in real life, though he will admit to having some finicky Felix traits.
Rollet, who plays Oscar, played the role of Felix nine years ago to Rosati’s Oscar at SCP’s Corner Playhouse, 12671 Dix Toledo Road.
He said his personality reflects both characters, but he is less Oscar and more Felix.
“When there are things that are out of place I keep putting them back, armrests and stuff like that,” Rollet said. “It’s not like I have a neat house, but those little things bother me, and so it’s hard to just let it go when I see it here.”
Because he currently directs more than he performs, Rollet said his friends and family are eager to see him onstage.
“It’s a great show,” Rollet said. “Everybody knows it, and it is still a funny show years later.”
Keathley said her comedic character, Cecily, is opposite her own personality, almost annoyingly so.
“To be honest, when I get off stage, I kind of want to punch myself in the face,” Keathley said. “We have to be so annoying. I have to think, ‘OK, turn on the bubble factor.’”
She said the show is hilarious.
“Anyone who has ever lived with anybody, we all have those moments when we want to choke them,” Keathley said. “It’s all in here.”
Clements, as Gwendolyn, said the sisters are bubbly and fun-loving.
“It is totally opposite of how I am, so it is kind of fun to play that character and do the English accent,” Clements said.
She said the interactions between the men in the cast are also funny.
“They work so well together,” she said. “It’s a fun good time.”
PGD ANNOUNCES TENTATIVE 2016-17 SEASON
The Players Guild of Dearborn board approved a tentative slate for its 2016-17 season, pending the acquisition of royalty rights.
In addition to two summer youth musicals, the regular season will feature three musicals, a dark comedy and an historical drama.
The proposed summer Guildling musicals are “Footloose” and “Super Hero Olympics.” The first show, “Footloose,” will feature teens, with auditions May 2 and 3, and a July 14 to 17 run. “Super Hero Olympics” for younger thespians, will hold auditions May 9 and 10, with an Aug. 4 to 7 run.
The Guild’s proposed 89th season will open with the musical “Two by Two,” with music by Richard Rodgers, lyrics by Martin Charnin and book by Peter Stone. It follows Noah through his preparations for the flood and its aftermath. Auditions are July 18 and 19, with a Sept. 16 to Oct. 2 run.
“Legally Blonde,” with music and lyrics by Laurence O’Keefe and Nell Benjamin, and book by Heather Hach, is the season’s second musical. Based on the movie by the same name, it follows Elle Woods, a sorority girl, who enters Harvard Law School to win back her boyfriend. She defies expectations and succeeds, while staying true to herself. Auditions are Sept. 19 and 20, with a Nov. 11 to Dec. 4 run.
Joseph Kesselring’s dark comedy “Arsenic and Old Lace” follows a homicidal family, with the focus on two spinsters who kill lonely old men with poisoned wine. Auditions are Nov. 14 and 15, with a Jan. 13 to 29, 2017 run.
James Goldman’s historical drama “The Lion in Winter” depicts the personal and political conflicts between England’s Henry II, his wife Eleanor of Aquitaine, and their sons and guests during Christmas 1183. Auditions are Jan. 16 and 17, with a March 10 to 26, 2017 run.
The season concludes with the musical “Sugar,” based on the film “Some Like It Hot,” with music by Jule Styne, lyrics by Bob Merrill, and book by Peter Stone. It follows two musicians who witness a mob massacre, and dress in drag with an all-female band to escape the murderous mobsters on their trail. Their disguises, though, lead to comical romantic complications.
Auditions are March 13 and 14, 2017, with a May 5 to 28, 2017 run.
For more information about the group, go to playersguildofdearborn.org.
SCP SUPER BOWL SUNDAY AUDITIONS SHIFTED
The Southgate Community Players have shifted the auditions dates for “Guys and Dolls” to avoid competition with Super Bowl Sunday.
The new audition dates are at 7 p.m. Feb. 8 and 9, with registration beginning at 6:30 p.m. at the Corner Playhouse, 12671 Toledo Dix Road in Southgate.
Performance dates are 8 p.m. May 6, 7, 13 and 14 at Davidson Middle School, 15800 Trenton Road in Southgate.
For more information, call 734-558-9779 or go to scponstage.com.
WATERWORKS HOLDS AUDITIONS FOR ‘RICHARD III’ AND ‘TWELFTH NIGHT’
The Waterworks Theatre Company will hold auditions for Shakespeare’s “Richard III” and “Twelfth Night” from 1 to 9 p.m. March 5, 6 and 7 at Starr Presbyterian Church, 1717 W. 13 Mile in Royal Oak.
Those auditioning should prepare two contrasting Shakespeare monologues, up to four minutes combined time, and provide two copies of their resume with a head shot.
Audition slots may be scheduled by calling 248-399-3727 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information, go to shakespeareroyaloak.com.