The White Plains Performing Arts Center located on the third level of City Center in White Plains is celebrating its 10th anniversary with a dynamic 2012-13 season.
Jeremy Quinn, artistic director for WPPAC, is excited about the center’s just released line-up. “We’re taking an edgier attitude this season,” Quinn said. Coming off a three-month planning process, Quinn feels he has selected shows with meaning. “There is something here for everyone,” he said, and that includes a good experience for both the audience and the actors.
Quinn spends a lot of time looking at what’s out there and has done well on Broadway and national tour. “When the rights become available for professional regional theater, I go for it,” he says. Many times the actors who have been on tour audition for the regional production.
The rights for The Color Purple, scheduled at WPPAC in February, had just been announced and Quinn is pleased to say, it will be showing in White Plains before it goes anywhere else. August: Osage County is showing in October, and the Importance of Being Earnest, in April. These three shows make up the main stage performances. Tommy, in December, and Hair, in May, are part of WPPAC’s Spotlight theater, which include an orchestra on stage. Rumors indicate that Hair might be returning to Broadway, but White Plains is the only theater with rights to the production for now.
The cast for August: Osage County has been selected and rehearsals begin this week. “We had 300 professional actors come up from New York City and those who live locally audition,” Quinn said, adding that WPPAC is an Equity theater. The actors on stage are paid professionals.
“The creative process is a fluid one at WPPAC,” Quinn noted. “The cast becomes a tight and supportive family. I believe in a collaborative working environment. Everyone brings something to the table, the actors, the designers, everyone.”
Quinn says he models each production after the original. He studies productions, goes to the theater regularly and is part of a large network, which helps him to develop creatively. “I begin each show with an image in mind,” Quinn says, “but many things come about during rehearsal. That’s part of the creative process.”
Quinn is thrilled with his choice for the lead in August: Osage County. Robin Lilly, who plays Violet Weston, is just a wonderful person and she’s perfect for the part he says.
So what’s the play about? A vanished father. A pill-popping mother. Three sisters harboring shady little secrets. When the large Weston family unexpectedly reunites after Dad disappears, their Oklahoman family homestead explodes in a maelstrom of repressed truths and unsettling secrets. Mix in Violet, the drugged-up, scathingly acidic matriarch, and you’ve got a major new play that unflinchingly—and uproariously—exposes the dark side of the Midwestern American family.
Subscriptions for the three main stage shows are available for $95; all five shows for $132.50. Individual tickets range from $25 to $40.
For more information about WPPAC, including concerts and other events held at the theater, visit wppac.com or call 914-328-1600.
Filed Under: The White Plains Examiner