This Thursday the Elgin Short Play Festival will begin its second year. In many ways it will be a departure from previous Janus productions.
This year we’re cracking a smile.
You see, the last few seasons we’ve produced a steady diet of what some people might call “heavy drama” or plays that leave you feeling a bit cathartic. It started in 2009 when produced Oedipus Rex, Miss Julie, Romeo & Juliet and then continued in 2010 with Macbeth, The Guys, and the short plays of Theresa Rebeck. Sure Rebeck’s plays were funny, but they were also pretty dark.
So for 2011 the sun will be coming out – in full force. It starts with this week’s short comedies from David Ives – a master wordsmith, who loves to turn the world of a play upside down.
Janus is no stranger to Ives. This is our third encounter with the master’s work. Every time we produce his plays, something new is discovered. And these plays are a perfect start to the summer season.
Following Mr. Ives, we’ll be producing our first summer rep series when we present two classic comedies in August – The Importance of Being Earnest and Twelfth Night. Good times.
So you may be asking, why the change? Where’s the vengeance of Medea or the melancholy meanderings of Hamlet or the fiery defiance of Antigone?
Well, like any good meal, you need to have an appetizer before the main course. And frankly, the last few years have been nothing but large meals full of starch. I sure do love a wonderful Fettuccini Alfredo (with a side of crusty bread), but sometimes you just want some cheese and crackers and a glass of Sangria. Or maybe just the Sangria.