Starlite Players presents “My Funny Valentine” in a matinee and four evening shows:
Four fast, fresh, funny comedies promise laughs about love on January 21-24
Company also announces themes and dates for February and March shows
SARASOTA, FL: Starlite Players gets a jump on that special day for real and would-be lovers with “My Funny Valentine,” a collection of four short comedies that take a comedic look at love in the 21st century. All four plays are presented for each of five performances in The Starlite Room, 1001 Cocoanut Avenue. The shows are set for Thursday through Saturday, January 21-23, at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, January 24, at 2 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. The selected plays, many of them award-winners, feature talented theatre professionals from the Tampa Bay area (roughly Tampa to Venice) serving as playwrights, directors, actors and tech crew.
The young performing arts company has also announced the themes and dates for its February and March plays, running from February 18-21 and March 17-20 respectively. “We’ve chosen the theme of ‘Mind Games’ for our February show, when we present some of the humorous ways people try to outsmart one another,” says Jo Morello, producer. “In March, with ‘Let Me Call You Sweetheart’ we return to love, a favorite theme of many playwrights who submit scripts to us.”
The January plays are:
VALENTINE’S DAY by Richard J. Budin, directed by Tim Guerrieri. Sharon arrives home to find her boyfriend Harold hiding in the bushes, naked. He claims a bow-and-arrow armed thief named Cupid stole everything including his clothes.
1-900-SEX DATE by Julian Olf, directed by James Thaggard. Naïve, lonely Milton musters his courage to call “Veronique,” a veteran phone sex worker who handles such calls routinely—but her conversation with Milton is far from routine. Winner, Nantucket Short Play Competition; Previous productions: Nantucket Actor’s Theatre and New Century Theatre (both in MA), University of North Carolina (Charlotte), West Coast Ensemble (Hollywood) and Phare Play Productions (NYC).
T.G.I.F. by Michael E Wolfson, directed by James Thaggard. A man unwinds after a busy week of work by sitting quietly in a cocktail lounge with his newspaper and a drink when a well-dressed woman insists on joining him. Annoyed, he questions her motives—and profession—as they negotiate their way to an unexpected resolution of their conflict. Previous productions: Nantucket Short Play Festival (MA), Spokane Civic Theatre (WA), Palm Springs Short Play Festival (CA), Brief Acts Company (NYC).
CONNUBIAL BLISS by Jo Morello & Jack Gilhooley, directed by Bob Trisolini. This comedy about a husband-and-wife playwriting team, written by real-life husband-and-wife playwrights, explores the reactions of Marie, Charlie and their hard-edged agent Leslie. When two of their plays meet with unaccustomed failure the couple decide to begin separate careers and lives—to Leslie’s delight (she likes Charlie) and dismay (she knows they can’t write separately). Previous productions: Gypsy Stage Repertory (10-venue tour of Tampa Bay area; Lantern Theatre, Sheffield, Kent, UK). Adapted from the award-winning full-length play “The Split” by the same authors, produced by Manatee Players.
Tickets cost $17.50 and include a 15% discount on an optional pre- or post-show meal at The Starlite Room. The restaurant regularly opens at 4 p.m. but will open at noon on Sunday matinee dates for a special brunch. Show tickets and information are available from www.starliteplayers.com, [email protected], and 941.587.8290 (2 p.m. to 4 p.m.). Also see the Starlite Players Facebook page. For meal reservations, call The Starlite Room (starlitesrq.com) at 941.702.5613.
(Please note the spelling of “STARLITE.”)
Starlite Players is new performing arts company that presents afternoons and evenings of short plays, primarily comedies, for one weekend each month. Formed in June 2015, the company features the finest of local talent. Starlite Players presented its first show in July and has produced 21 short plays to date. Jo Morello, Inc. is the producer. The Starlite Room donates space for performances and rehearsals and the Jazz Club of Sarasota also provides sponsorship.