At the Adirondack Theatre Festival, previous artistic producers were never afraid of breaking new ground or exploring uncharted territory. With Chad Rabinowitz at the helm, that’s not going to change.
Rabinowitz, in fact, will take things a step further.
“ATF is a known entity outside of its region as a place where the excitement is being a part of premieres, where the audience has an impact on the outcome of the show,” said Rabinowitz, who was serving as artistic director at the Bloomington Playwrights Project in Indiana when he agreed to succeed Marc Fleischer at ATF.
“We’re about expanding that reputation. For me the most important thing in theater right now is developing new art. We’re going to give our audience a backstage view of the theater world and devote ourselves to developing new, contemporary works.”
WHERE: Charles R. Wood Theater, Adirondack Theatre Festival, 207 Glen St., Glens Falls
WHEN: Opens Tuesday and runs through July 3; show times are 7:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, and a 2 p.m. matinee on July 1
HOW MUCH: $40-$26
MORE INFO: 480-4878, www.ATFestival.org
The ATF season begins Tuesday with a production of a new play by Michelle Kholos Brooks and Kelly Younger called “Kalamazoo.” Kholos Brooks is the daughter-in-law of comedy legend Mel Brooks.
“We did ‘Kalamazoo’ in Bloomington just this past September and it was the best-selling show in 35 years,” said Rabinowitz. “For a straight play to beat out a popular musical is a great feat. It’s a darn good story about two 70-year-olds who meet online.”
The two leads in “Kalamazoo” are played by Kate Braun and Ken Farrell, the same two actors who performed those roles in Bloomington.
“We extended the run in Bloomington three times, but it still is under development,” said Rabinowitz, who directed the show in Indiana and is directing this production.
“I’m still working with the writers, and we will be finalizing the script based on the reaction of our audience here in Glens Falls. This is a laugh-out-loud play, but along with being funny it’s also one of the most touching and meaningful comedies that ever existed.”
Also on ATF’s season this summer are “The unCivil War,” by Rick Kunzi, Justin Zeppa and Brian Arnosky, “Spun: A Brother/Sister Rock Musical,” and “Think Again: An Evening of Mind Reading and Magic,” with mentalist Max Major.
“Typically, a lot of theater companies will produce a lot of known work and then slip in one unknown play,” said Rabinowitz.
“When you throw a new title into that mix, that play does the worst. But the strategy for me is to create a whole season of new plays, and sell the experience of coming to see something new. You’re going to hear me say over and over again, ‘it’s time to see something new.’ That’s our slogan.”
ATF will also offer a series of cabaret events along with a staged reading of another new play, “The Banana Tree.”
Here is the schedule:
June 23-July 3: “Kalamazoo”
July 9-18” “The unCivil War”
July 23-Aug. 1: “Spun: A Brother/Sister Rock Musical”
Aug. 4-7: “Think Again: An Evening of Mind Reading and Magic”
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