Quill Theatre to debut 1970′s award winning play ‘American Buffalo’ next week
Quill Theatre has a simple mission statement: theatre worth talking about.
When trying to decide what Fall show would do well within the Quill Theatre walls, old undergraduate pals Daniel Moore, Director and Jan Powell, Artistic Director, put their heads together and decided on American Buffalo.
Moore and Powell have agreed that this show would uphold Quill Theatre’s that very statement.
“Quill is all about plays that focus on the richness of language,” Moore said.
David Mamet’s American Buffalo debuted in Chicago in 1975, and had plenty of audience reactions. This October, Quill Theatre is hoping to keep that momentum going.
There are ample plays out there that would do well at Quill, but American Buffalo stuck out this season. Moore previously directed the show in 1978- it was actually his first professional directorial show-and he thought it would be a great show to bring to Quill.
“It’s an American classic, and so it’s of interest to us for that reason alone,” said Powell. “A “classic” is a work of such depth that it is of enduring fascination over the decades. This play was written in the mid-70′s and speaks to us just as potently today, with so much humor and heartbreak–watching it is one of those experiences that you never forget. These guys are not the sharpest tools in the shed, but they climb inside your skin and you live through their triumphs and despair with them.”
American Buffalo is set in Chicago, which is evident in the distinct dialect of within the show.
Moore and Powell both spoke of the distinct language of playwright David Mamet, with Moore having said, “his language is the language of the street.”
The duo also agreed that even though they saw Mamet’s dialogue as well thought out and brilliant, some patrons would more than likely agree that it was vulgar.
“It’s not everyone’s cup of tea,” said Moore. “He does use a fair amount of profanity but it’s not gratuitous.”
Both Moore and Powell spoke of Mamet’s distinct writing style, explaining that the profanity is used as a tool and that the language he uses is masterful. When it comes to plays, words are probably the most important. With Quill Theatre, that is a definite.
Powell said that her job is to make sure that the quality of the shows being produced ensure that. “I do what I call “hovering supportively”–making sure that the artistic quality is extremely high, and that the whole show feels like a Quill production,” she said. “That means, the language is fully realized and the interpretation is detailed–we don’t gloss over meaning. We explore the power of the spoken word as fully as we possibly can.”
Moore and Powell both hope that everyone who comes out to see the show will be further intrigued to read more of Mamet’s works.
Opening night for American Buffalo is next Thursday Oct. 8 and the show runs through Nov. 1. Tickets are $15 for students, $25 for seniors, RVATA (RAPT) members tickets are $20 and adults are $30. https://henleystreet.showare.com/eventperformances.asp?evt=30
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