Tuesday, September 30, 2008

[Coweta Arts Tidbits] Joe Landry Interviewed About His Play Vintage Hitchcock Premiering at Legacy Theatre


Coweta Arts Tidbits


The Successor To Newnan-Coweta Arts Council News Releases


Composed By: Forrest W. Schultz 770-583-3258

October 1, 2008

Website Created About World Premiere of VINTAGE HITCHCOCK at Legacy Theatre


Playwright Joe Landry Interviwed by Artistic Director Mark Smith

     In anticipation of the performance later this month of Vintage Hitchcock, a website has been created to answer the questions generated by this unusual play and the reason why
its World Premiere is being held in the small town of Tyrone rather than in a large city like Atlanta.  (In the info provided below, the word "Atlanta" means "Atlanta area".)  The information below comes from two websites, the Legacy Theatre website www.thelegacytheatre.org and www.vintagehitchcock.com.  The Legacy Theatre is run by a couple from Newnan, GA:  Mark Smith, the Artistic Director, and Bethany Smith, the Executive Producer.     
Vintage Hitchcock: A Live Radio Play

by Joe Landry

October 17 - November 2, 2008



Joe Landry, author of one of the most produced plays in America in 2007, It's A Wonderful Live: A Live Radio Play, has chosen the The Legacy Theatre to premiere his new play, Vintage Hitchcock: A Live Radio Play. "This is New York City and WBFR presenting Vintage Hitchcock. Each week, at this hour, we bring you the excitement of the great stories of the strange and unusual. Dark and compelling yarns culled form the four corners of the world. Tonight, we present a trio of thrilling tales immortalized by the Master of Suspense, Mr. Alfred Hitchcock: 'The Lodger,' 'The Thirty-Nine Steps' and 'The Lady Vanishes'." The author himself will be working hand in hand with director, Mark Smith, and the cast to craft a piece that will be released for world-wide production in the near future. The Legacy will the be the first EVER to present this fantastic evening of thrills and suspense. Audiences will not want to miss out on the chance to be a part of this history-making production.

For more information about the play , please visit the author's show website at http://vintagehitchcock.com/

Buy Tickets

Box Office (404) 895-1473


"Vintage Hitchcock: A Live Radio Play" is an evening of radio play adaptations of three early films directed by Alfred Hitchcock. In "The Lodger," a landlady suspects her mysterious new tenant may be a serial killer. In "The Lady Vanishes," a young woman on vacation triggers an international incident when she tries to track an elderly friend who has disappeared. And, finally, in "The 39 Steps," a man falsely accused of murder races across Scotland handcuffed to the beautiful blonde who turned him in. These stories come to life in the style of a 1940s radio broadcast, with five actors playing dozens of characters, live sound effects and musical underscoring.
"Vintage Hitchcock: A Live Radio Play"
will premiere at The Legacy Theatre
in Atlanta, GA in October, 2008.
Click here for details
JOE LANDRY (Playwright)
At age 12, Joe's first job was in the film department at the library in his hometown of Fairfield, CT. This was before the dawn of home video, back in the days of 16mm, and their permanent collection included "It's a Wonderful Life," "The Lady Vanishes" and other early Hitchcock films. Joe's other main interest was the theatre. Encouraged by his parents, Joe was introduced to various theatres which he came to call home, including Playwrights Horizons and Roundabout Theatre Company in New York, Westport Country Playhouse and others. In 1995, Joe founded Second Guess Theatre Company, which produced over two dozen new plays, adaptations and revivals to critical-acclaim. In 1997, "It's a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play" premiered in Stamford, CT and has since enjoyed productions around the country. This fall, Joe's adaptation of the cult classic "Reefer Madness" is being published by Playscripts, Inc. In January, 2009, "Mothers and Sons," a musical co-written with Kevin Connors, premieres in Connecticut. Other future projects include a work inspired by Erich von Stroheim's "Greed." joelandry.com

The following interview is between Mark Smith, Artistic Director of the Legacy Theatre in Atlanta, GA, where "Vintage Hitchcock: A Live Radio Play" premieres in October, 2008.

MARK SMITH. Could you tell us exactly what is a "radio play?" What uniquely separates it from a "regular" play?


JOE LANDRY. What uniquely separates a "radio play" from a "regular" play is the style of theatrical storytelling. In the "radio plays" I've written thus far, ("It's a Wonderful Life" and "Vintage Hitchcock") the audience is invited to experience the magic of a live 1940s radio broadcast. The golden age of old time radio is recreated using a handful of actors who play the dozens of characters in the stories and create sound effects and musical accompaniment to assist in engaging the imagination.

MARK. Why were you drawn to adapting radio plays for the stage? What is it about this medium that inspires you?


JOE. I had originally adapted "It's a Wonderful Life" as a full-stage version with twenty actors and full sets. While this version enjoyed a modest success with high schools and community theatres, the piece proved too large in scope and budget for most professional producers. While I was trying to pare the piece down I was also becoming a fan of old time radio and started thinking that "Wonderful Life" would be a perfect match for this medium. It was this new radio play version that really started the ball rolling, and word of mouth spread from one production to another. The blend of simplicity and nostalgia which initially attracted me to the radio play medium continue to inspire me today.

MARK. "It's A Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play" was named one of the most produced plays in the country in 2007. How did that make you feel?


JOE. I was delighted to learn that American Theatre Magazine named my adaptation of "It's a Wonderful Life" among the top-ten most produced plays of 2007. And I was flattered to feel that my play had generated this level of interest around the country. While Frank Capra's original continues making new fans every year, I couldn't be happier in helping share the timeless tale of George Bailey through this additional medium.

MARK. Why did you choose the early British films of Alfred Hitchcock to adapt into the radio play?


JOE. Hitchcock is one of my favorite directors, and my first memories of seeing his films were those from his early years. Hitchcock developed a storytelling style and motifs in these early pictures which would follow him throughout his long career. I've chosen to adapt from this period because I don't think as many fans know these films as well as "Psycho" or "The Birds," and, if you're anything like me, there's nothing like discovering a new treasure from a filmmaker you love.

MARK. How will this production be different from "It's A Wonderful Life?" How will it be similar?


JOE. The biggest change is the number of stories. While "It's a Wonderful Life" tells that one story, "Vintage Hitchcock" tells three. The radio play elements in both "Wonderful Life" and "Hitchcock" are similar stylistically and each require the same number of actors (two women and thee men) to create the dozens of characters and sound effects over the course of the evening.

MARK. Why did you choose The Legacy Theatre to produce this World Premiere?


JOE. I first became aware of The Legacy Theatre when they chose to produce "It's a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play" last season. Every year I try to visit at least a few productions, and I was fortunate enough to see Legacy's production last year. Not only was the production itself amazing, but the theatre was such a beauty (I equate The Legacy to a boutique hotel when telling my friends about the place) and Mark, Bethany and the cast couldn't have been more welcoming. In my bio last year, I mentioned I was working on a radio play based on early Hitchcock, Mark sounded very interested and I was thrilled he was able to include the play's premiere this season!

MARK. What will your involvement be in this very first production?


JOE. I'm expecting to be very involved with developing the script itself, and will do so from my home in Connecticut as well as in residence at the Legacy during rehearsals. Being on site for the opening weekend will provide the opportunity to see how the piece plays in front of an audience, which is always the true test of a play. I'm grateful to the Legacy for providing me with this amazing opportunity, and couldn't be more excited to share in this premiere!

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