A most provocative start to season 59 awaits patrons of Edmonds Driftwood Players as director Paul Fouhy does a switch-a-roo on traditional casting of the troupe’s opening production, Baskerville: A Sherlock Holmes Mystery. (Fouhy also directed Driftwood productions Proposal by Neil Simon as well as the Festival of Shorts play, Good Ole Mom & Dad by Eric Bischoff, which won “Judge’s Selection”.)
Leaving the mystery of the extent of the “switch” to director Fouhy’s telling, Artfully Edmonds presents an exclusive: “Notes from the Director”, provided by Edmonds Driftwood Players:
Director Paul Fouhy:
“Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson have been a staple of our culture since the 1890s. Conan Doyle all but invented the mystery/detective stories we have grown to love so much. He developed a character in Sherlock Holmes that becomes our hero, despite his flaws, quirks, and obsessions.
I first encountered this play last January when the prospect of directing this season at Driftwood presented itself. The play’s original casting requirements called for four men and one woman. After reading the play a few times and preparing for the interview at Driftwood, I realized this play is about the creative joy live theater brings to sharing a compelling story and that the original traditional casting requirements were not a necessity. I then asked the playwright if it would be possible to reverse-cast the play to four women and one man, and the playwright agreed it would be an interesting idea and could possibly add even further insights into the relationship of Holmes and Watson and the overall story of the play.
We have not made the principal characters female but rather have simply cast women to play the parts.
[Playwright Ken] Ludwig has stated, “My hope is that Baskerville is about the theatre as much as it is about Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson.”
[Edmonds Driftwood Players] goal is to have you, the audience, be a part of this adventure and join us as both (audience and actors) watch the story unfold with deliberate awareness of a theatrical performance.
Ludwig believes the story is about fellowship and courage and adventure, and has stated in interviews that he was trying to stretch the genres of comedy and mystery by telling a story on a large scale but using only five actors, three of which play about 40 roles between them.
Our amazing cast and crew have more than risen to this challenge.
It has been a joy working on this show with such talented actors, craftsmen, and producers. I would like to thank Driftwood Players for the opportunity to direct this play and to Ken Ludwig for his willingness to allow us to creatively explore the fascinating world he created.”
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Although screen actor Lucy Liu was cast as Dr. Joan Watson (a female in a female role, obviously) in the CBS series, Elementary; and in 2015 Steven Moffat the creator of BBC’s Sherlock ruminated on a female Sherlock Holmes “in the future”, Artfully Edmonds has not found an instance of cross-gender acting in which a female plays a male in a traditional male role, for any adaptation of Sherlock Holmes.
It must be pointed out, however, that actor Emma Thompson has expressed an interest in playing Holmes in cross-gender casting.
This casting, by director Fouhy, represents an intriguing move by a troupe that has earned its chops through bold decisions. We’re fascinated as we look forward to Friday’s opening night!
Artfully Edmonds and My Edmonds News would like to congratulation Edmonds Driftwood Players on their upcoming 59th Season.
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Friday, Sept. 8
Edmonds Driftwood Players in its
By Ken Ludwig ~ Directed by Paul Fouhy
James Wade Theatre
950 Main St.
“A murderously funny adventure.”
Sherlock Holmes is on the case. The heirs of the Baskerville line are being “dispatched” one by one. To find their ingenious killer, Holmes and Watson must brave the desolate Scottish moors before a family curse dooms its newest heir.
Enjoy the antics and the conundrums as two intrepid investigators try to escape a dizzying web of clues, silly accents, disguises, and deceit while five actors deftly portray more than forty characters. Does a wild hellhound prowl the moors of Devonshire?
Can our heroes discover the truth in time, “elementary” as it might be?
The cast for Baskerville: A Sherlock Holmes Mystery includes:
Sherlock Holmes – Kris “Pepper” Hambrick
Dr. Watson – Brynne Garman
Actor One (playing 14 different characters) – Ingrid Sanai Buron
Actor Two (playing 7 different characters) – Robert Alan Barnett
Actor Three (playing 14 different characters) – Elex Hill
The Driftwood Players’ online ticket outlet is accessible through this link, or by calling the box office at 425-774-9600.
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Eclipse causes art!
If you are one of the many who stroll past the construction site at Main St. and 2nd Ave. where arts center Graphite will ultimately sit, you no doubt have noticed the rock sculpture and flowering metal piece that has held court at that location since about 11 a.m. on Monday, August 21.
That date, of course, marks the day on which the full solar eclipse took place, obviously providing just enough muted cover for “a mysterious force” to assemble said rock sculpture.
Edmonds business woman Tracy Felix, business partner in the Graphite venture exclaimed, when asked by Artfully Edmonds who should be credited with this Edmonds-Kind-Of-Art, that she had no idea who built it, or who should be credited with its creation.
“It just mysteriously appeared – during the solar eclipse!”
For progress notes regarding Graphite, which will house ARTstart and many other arts endeavors, follow My Edmonds News.
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Sept. 9/ 10
Quirky questions welcome!
The Odd Plant Show and Sale
18528 Aurora Ave. ~ Shoreline
“Odd plants” is what the Cascade Cactus & Succulent Society has in mind for us this weekend for an exhibit of many exotic, rare, and attention-grabbing plants.
The Society promises “fantastic displays of unusual specimens for both indoors and outdoors, with many unique varieties for sale”.
Plus, “odd plant” experts will be in attendance to answer all of your unique and quirky questions.
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Saturday, September 9
1 – 4 p.m.
Beauty of the Northwest
401 Main St.
Gallery North invites the public to the reception honoring the artists juried into this year’s “Beauty of the Northwest” exhibition.
Entries to the 8th Annual Invitational Show were judged by watercolorist and sketchbook artist Charlene Collins Freeman.
The painting selected will receive a $100 Poster Award sponsored by Digital Canvas Northwest, which is owned by Cary Cartmill.
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Music Scene Mention
Artfully Edmonds cannot think of any attract-the-public-to-art venture nowadays that can pull off wild success without an energetic social media presence. And that is what makes Richard Allen so appealing to this arts columnist – in addition to his authentic Acadian music, dedication to music education, and great sense of humor.
Teacher, musician, composer and singer/songwriter, Allen leads Richard Allen & The Louisiana Experience; in addition to his many other endeavors.
We first discovered him gigging with his group a couple of weeks ago at Engel’s Pub in downtown Edmonds. If one follows Richard’s Facebook page (which we do now) it’s immediately obvious that Richard Allen has a growing band of followers who take to his brand of music like ‘Nawlins’ tourists to beignets.
So many cultures share the tradition of boisterous family gatherings; with children chasing each other in and out of the house sharing secrets and devising plots, the women managing elaborate meals with the men talking over family business. It’s no surprise that Richard’s bio regales this same sweet story, “It was a childhood filled with the smell of cooking, spicy gumbo on the stove, a cornbread stuffing in the oven, crawfish on to boil and okra frying, with mom presiding over the stove, laughing with the cousins crowding into the kitchen.”
His hometown of Lafayette is the site of LARC Acadian Village, showcase of the cultural heritage of the forcibly-deported Canadians of French Acadie (1700s).
Leaving a home life rich in Cajun culture and Zydeco music Richard easily found his way to LSU/Baton Rouge for his undergraduate studies. From there he continued a star-studded music career, while at the same time pursuing a graduate education at University of Texas/Austin. His doctoral studies began in Houston.
One of his early professional appearances as a maestro was in Seattle, conducting Singing In the Rain, which Artfully Edmonds finds quite apropos.
Chubby Carrier, 2011 Grammy winner, suggests when listening to Richard’s music, “Bring your dancing shoes, so that you can throw them in the corner!”
So! For the following two Richard Allen “date” suggestions, go ahead and wear those sparkly, rhinestone toe-pinchers, if you must. But when you hear the Richard Allen downbeat – you’ll be throwing them in the corner!
Here’s where you’ll find Richard Allen in the greater Edmonds vicinity this month:
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Wednesday, Sept. 13
Richard Allen with Seattle native, Jesse D Weston
11601 Harbour Point Blvd. ~ Mukilteo
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also Friday, Sept. 15
Richard Allen ~ Solo
The Scotsman Bistro
11601 Harbour Point Blvd. ~ Mukilteo
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Sept. 16/ 17
10 – 5 p.m.
Edmonds Art Studio Tour 2017 (EAST)
An annual arts event celebration of Edmonds Arts Festival, EAST participating artists regale in the months of planning that goes into their open house studio tour. And, the greater Seattle area arts enthusiasts respond in kind.
What makes this tour so down-home friendly is its welcoming promotion in the way of beckoning videos, easy to decipher maps, and eager-to-share artisans.
This week Artfully Edmonds continues its liner note mentions for each of the artists participating in the 12th annual tour:
Bonnie AuBuchon teaches the art of jewelry making from her Edmonds-area studio. Working with both gold and sterling silver, Bonnie doesn’t limit herself to this media. She also excels at printmaking. She says of this art form, “Printmaking has brought me fully into the abstract world.”
Liana Bennett’s storied journey in art brought her to the Seattle in 1983 where a year later she opened Arts Umbrella Arts Center. Born in North Wales she made her way to what is now CalArts where Clayton Williams served as her teacher and mentor. She specializes in acrylics, oils and mixed media.
D’Elaine Johnson ~ “Universal cultures of the world” she explains in her video. Musically inclined, d’Elaine calls her violin playing, “nourishment for my soul”.
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Lynn McManus, in her interview with Lynnette Hensley observed about first-time viewers of her art: I would like them to [realize] the time spent to create my pieces. Her first introduction to glass art was in in an art class offered at North Seattle Community College the 1970s. Her abundant experience weighs generously toward teaching.
Tina Marohn admits, “Living in the Northwest, I am never at a loss for inspiration.” Tina is sharing her studio (Marohn’s Glass and Fine Arts Studio) with jewelry artist Ellen Chappelle for the tour. Having recently had the opportunity of completing a mandala this past April her work reflects a “profound and life changing transition.”
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Bill Ray introduces himself thusly; “I first became passionate about photography doing black and white darkroom work as a teenager, trying to make my pictures look like those of Ansel Adams after taking mine from “above his tripod holes”. Later, the great color nature photographers like Robert Ketchum, Elliot Porter, and Art Wolfe provided inspiration.
Bill will have his landscape photography on view at the studio of Bonnie AuBuchon.
Karen Simonson couldn’t be more nicely paired, for gallery space, than with Re-Juiced Studio. Her work in abstract painting, mixed media, and oils and acrylics are swirls and shapes that dance on canvass. Although a Washington native, she says that her “desire to paint quickened while living in Europe.” She cites Alden Mason as her mentor and influence.
Additional information about Edmonds Art Studio Tour 2017 is available via this link.
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Edmonds Center for the Arts
410 4th Ave. N.
On Saturday, September 23 the city’s stage belongs to Edmonds Center for the Arts as it celebrates in dazzling style the 11th Annual Gala and Auction – and the success of its spectacular bookings.
Dress Up! Sip wine with your friends, call greetings to your neighbors, enjoy a sumptuous meal, and fill your evening with laughter! A very special evening is just days away.
Tickets are available here for this top-drawer gala, which welcomes back John Curley as auctioneer, with catering by Shooby Doo Catering, Bar Dojo, and Salt & Iron.
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ECA Upcoming ‘Presented Events’
Saturday, September 30
The Four Tops, by Special Engagement
Thursday, October 5
Bria Skonberg, Canadian singer, songwriter, trumpeter
Hyper- Sell Out Alert!
Thursday, October 12
Randy Newman, by Special Engagement
Friday, October 20
Piaf! The story of Parisian singer Edith Piaf
Saturday, October 28
Las Migas, Flamenco and Mediterranean music
And, dear readers, that only gets us through ECA’s October calendar of ‘Presented Events’. There are also cinema series and many other community engagements taking place on Edmonds’ premier stage.
— By Emily Hill
Emily Hill is the author of two novels and a short story collection. Emily is retired from a career in public information and news media relations. If you would like your event listed, or featured, in Artfully Edmonds, Emily invites you to contact her at [email protected].