Circle Theatre Players
REMEMBER SATURDAY NIGHTS AND THE SHOW OF SHOWS SID CAESAR'S HOUR?
Circle Theatre Players present the comedy Laughter on the 23rd Floor by Neil Simon on stage at the Sand Lake Center for the Arts, 2880 NY 43, Averill Park, N.Y. Dec. 6,7,12,13,14 at 8 p.m. and Dec. 8,15 at 2:30 p.m. Tickets are $18 for adults, $10 for those under the age of 18. The building is handicap accessible and has ample parking. For details see slca-ctp.org or call 518-674-2007
Now come behind the scenes as the play focuses on Sid Caesar-like Max Prince, the star of a weekly comedy-variety show circa 1953, and his staff, including Simon's alter-ego Lucas Brickman, who maintains a running commentary on the writing, fighting, and wacky antics which take place in the writers' room. Max has an ongoing battle with NBC executives, who fear his humor is too sophisticated for Middle America. The play is notable not only for its insider's look at the personalities and processes of television comedy writing but also for its reflection of the political and social concerns of the time
Fellow Comedian Imogene Coco recalls: There was special chemistry to Your Show of Shows, I think, because [producer-director] Max [Liebman] wasn't afraid to throw out material at the last minute. And I think when you do live television — well, we stopped for nothing. We had no cue cards, no TelePrompTers, and no ad-libbing on the air because Max would have died if anybody had ad-libbed. It would have been an utter disgrace, and you would have been drummed right out of the corps. ... Nobody ever forgot a line, and that was the amazing part of it.
The show was Simon's 28th show and is directed by Melanie Douglas. The boys in the backroom include Brian Sheldon, Anthony Halloway, Bill Douglas, Fred Sirois, Jerred Hickey, Henry DiMaria and Dennis Skiba accompanied by Erica Pandolfo and Grace Burkart. Audiences can anticipate another award-winning set by Bob Dawes and costumes by Barbara Neu.
Circle Theatre Players is celebrating its 39th year of producing community theater. After renovating the old town hall in Sand Lake in 2002, they expanded to become the Sand Lake Center for the Arts which now also features concerts, after school programs, art galleries and theater classes.
TALK TO US
If you'd like to leave a comment (or a tip or a question) about this story with the editors, please email us. We also welcome letters to the editor for publication; you can do that by filling out our letters form and submitting it to the newsroom.