Saturday, January 28

Theatre Conspiracy opens season with Clown Bar

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Theatre Conspiracy at the Alliance for the Arts announces its 29th consecutive season, which includes beloved classics, comedic favorites and award-winning new plays from the most popular unknown playwrights.
Performances are Thursday, Friday and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday matinees at 2 p.m.
Here is the season:

Clown Bar by Adam Szymkowicz
Directed by Bill Taylor
Performances are Aug. 18 – 20 and 25 – 27 at 7:30 p.m. and Aug. 28 at 2 p.m.
Join Theatre Conspiracy for this immersive experience as they transform the Alliance theatre into the Clown Bar, plunging you into the dark and secret world of these hilarious, yet frightening, gangster clowns.
Happy’s brother Timmy is found dead. Now Happy must return to his former life as a clown to ask a few questions. But will Happy be able to go home again without getting sucked into the seedy clown underbelly of vice and violence?

August Wilson’s The Piano Lesson
Directed by Sonya McCarter
Oct. 20 – 29
The Piano Lesson, set in 1936 Pittsburgh, focuses on the conflicting wills of brother and sister, Boy Willie and Berniece, regarding their family’s most important heirloom, a piano. But this is no ordinary piano as it contains intricate carvings by their great-grandfather depicting the many struggles in their family history. The piano was originally owned by the slave owners of their family, with carvings of their great-grandmother, grandfather, and the likeness of their whole family tree.
Boy Willie wants to sell the piano to purchase a parcel of land in Mississippi, a piece of the very land on which his ancestors had been slaves. This would allow him to finally achieve his dream of making a living farming his own property. But Berniece holds strong, viewing the piano as an integral reminder of where they came from, who they are now, and as a legacy for their future generations.
This complex play filled with subplots conveys tremendous significance as it examines slavery and the difficulty of black Americans seeking economic and social equality.

The Parking Lot by Adam Szymkowicz
Directed by Madelaine Weymouth
Dec. 8 – 18
J and Terry are married, but they might not stay that way for long. While most couples have the benefit of negotiating the ups and downs of marriage in private, or in therapy, J and Terry have taken a different approach. Instead they have chosen a parking lot as the setting to answer one of life’s biggest questions: Should we get divorced?
The show stars Rachel Endrizzi and Ken Quiricone.
Note this performance takes place outside in the parking lot. Ticket holders should bring their own chairs and coolers. In the event of inclement weather, they will reach out to you to either refund or reschedule the viewing.

Faceless by Selina Fillinger
Directed by Miguel Cintron
Jan. 19 – 29
On her way to Syria, Susie Glenn, a Caucasian 18-year-old from the Chicago suburbs, is arrested and charged with terrorism. Susie had been radicalized online resulting in her conversion to Islam. How does that even happen? That’s exactly what prosecuting attorney Claire Fathi, a Harvard-educated Muslim, would like to know. This courtroom drama delves into the many facets involved in this true story as it examines how Susie found herself engaged to an ISIS fighter through social media and believing wholeheartedly in radical Islam. It also examines the complex feelings of Claire, who wonders what right Susie has to profess herself as a true Muslim, along with knowing she herself is being used as a token in the prosecution of this case.


The Last Show
Written & Performed by Derek Lively
Directed by Bill Taylor
Feb. 16 – 26
Set in an illegal underground nightclub in a city where all public social gatherings and all forms of art have been banned, a performance artist risks arrest to perform for the first (and last time) in front of his dying mother. With nothing but props, a microphone and a bottle of cognac, the performance artist holds nothing back because this show is unlike any other that he has performed.
Derek Lively is a veteran of the New York stage, but happily calls Southwest Florida his home. is thrilled to be back at Theatre Conspiracy. Previous performances at the Alliance for the Arts include King in King Hedley II, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in The Mountaintop, Frederick Douglass in The Agitators, Walter Lee Younger in A Raisin in the Sun and Canewell in Seven Guitars.

The Hatmaker’s Wife
by Lauren Yee
Directed by Carmen Crussard
March 16 – 26
The expression, “if these walls could talk,” comes true for a young woman who moves into an old home with her boyfriend. Expecting to be happy living together, the couple find it less than ideal and soon the woman hears a wall speaking to her and begins receiving notes. It appears the wall wants to help this couple by sharing the story of two former residents, a hatmaker and his wife. The hatmaker is upset about the loss of his favorite hat, oh as well as his long-suffering wife leaving him after decades of marriage. But there’s a reason for this bizarre communication and stories about true love never get old.
This play will have you believing in the possibility of transcending worlds where love and family will always remain the most important aspects of life.
Season subscriptions range from $112 per person for four shows, $125 for five shows and $144 per person for all six shows. Flex passes are also available. Individual ticket prices are $30, $13 for students or $25 for Alliance members.
To purchase tickets or for more info, call 239-939-2787, visit 10091 McGregor Blvd. in Fort Myers or go online at www.ArtInLee.org/Theatre.

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