I haven’t linked to them explicitly before now but John Porter’s reviews of “[title of show]” and “Bloody Murder” were both posted relatively recently. For that matter, I didn’t link to the T-D review of “Murder” either – click here for Ms. Lewis’s take.
When the Barksdale “Signature Season” announcement came out a couple of weeks ago, one of the entries was listed as “rights pending.” Apparently, the rights for “God of Carnage” have come through and so now it’s their official “Acts of Faith” entry for next year, definitely an exciting development.
One of the fun things about season announcements has always been playing the casting guessing game. I know when word first started circulating that Barksdale was doing “Spring Awakening,” the speculation among “SA” devotees (e.g., my lovely wife) about who in town could / should play each part began in earnest. Now the same thing can happen with “God of Carnage.” The stars who originated the lead roles on Broadway definitely put distinctive stamps on them, making it hard for me to immediately plug local actors into each slot. It’s also interesting that the roles in this show have sometimes been swapped by the leads in each gender before so perhaps the specific person is not as important as someone who is just a damn good actor. Hmm.
The Barksdale shows aren’t the only ones that lend themselves to this game (“My Fair Lady” being precast took that one out of the running). Firehouse’s “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” certainly was rife for speculation (though not anymore since casting has been finalized). I’m still fascinated by thoughts of who among the extremely talented local youngsters will be tapped for Triangle Players’ “Stupid Kids.” Certainly, someone of substantial skill will need to play Shylock in Henley Street’s “Merchant of Venice.” Sycamore Rouge’s “Topdog / Underdog” should spark some intense competition for the two leads. And even Theatre IV’s season generates conjecture: who, for instance, would be appropriate to step into the shoes – or webbed feet, as it were – of either Frog or Toad?
This kind of casting conjecture happens all the time for movies: anyone remember the strum and drang over the casting of the "Twilight" leads? Similar anticipation followed the announcement of an American adaptation of the "Dragon Tattoo" series. More recently, the producers of "The Hunger Games" got a lot of press for their decision to make Jennifer Lawrence their Catniss (an excellent choice, IMHO). The final decisions are always the director’s, of course. But even so, it’s fun to imagine who might be perfect for a specific role. Anyone out there want to offer up your thoughts for upcoming Richmond shows? You'll probably have a better chance guessing who'll be Richmond's Stinky Cheese Man than Hollywood's Lisbeth Salander.