Make ’em laugh...
Jim Bombicino appears as a Superhero from a piece performed at last year’s Actors Theatre Playhouse Ten Minute Play Festival.

Make ’em laugh...

Ten Minute Play Fest, two comedies on deck for ATP’s 2019 season

The Actors Theatre Playhouse plans to spend its 2019 season with three different productions aimed straight at your funny bone.

ATP's annual Ten Minute Play Festival begins June 6 and runs through June 22, followed by Ron Hutchinson's Moonlight and Magnolias on July 25 through Aug. 17 and Alan Ayckbourn's The Time of My Life on Sept. 6 through 28.

The 2019 Ten Minute Play Festival kicks off the new season on Thursday, June 6, featuring the eight winners of a year-long national competition.

According to ATP, more than 600 scripts were submitted in the fall, and directors sorted through the material over a three-month period to select a group of semi-finalists.

From this group of 24, a dozen scripts were selected, and from that group, the eight finalists emerged. The collection promises a wide range of comedies and dramas.

With complex characters and plots that challenge audiences to get to the heart of a conflict quickly, 10-minute plays have become a national phenomenon.

The nine performances are Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, June 6-22, at 7:30 p.m. All tickets are $10 for general seating.

The Playhouse turns to farce in late July with Ron Hutchinson's Moonlight and Magnolias, based on the true story of the making of the classic film, Gone with the Wind.

It's five weeks into filming and Atlanta has burned. Scarlett O'Hara has been cast. The problem is there is no workable script and George Cukor, the director, has been fired by legendary film producer David O. Selznick, who seems to have a big white elephant on his hands and only five days to save the production from failure.

Desperate, Selznick recruits the formidable Victor Fleming to take over as director and famed screenwriter Ben Hecht to rewrite the script. The only problem is that Hecht has not read the book and the clock is ticking.

With shades drawn, phone calls unanswered, and a diet of peanuts and bananas, Selznick and Fleming frantically re-enact the scenes for Hecht, with hilarious results.

According to the New York Daily News, “Frankly, my dear, this is one funny play.”

Twelve performances take place on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, July 25-Aug. 17. Tickets on Thursdays are $12, and $15 on Fridays and Saturdays.

The Playhouse's final offering to the gods of comedy is an Alan Ayckbourn family classic, The Time of My Life, a fast-paced comedy concerning the well-to-do Stratton family. The setting is the family's favorite restaurant, where life's events have been celebrated for decades, despite the less than stellar service.

Scenes shift between three different tables, allowing Ayckbourn to have fun with time and space, flipping from the present to the past to the future and back to the present as this seemingly normal family's pronounced judgments on each other, the family infidelities, and their disappointing children are exposed in awkward fits, situational misconceptions, and flailing arguments.

Eight performances take place on Fridays and Saturdays, Sept. 6-28, Tickets are $15, $8 for students.

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