"Hee-Haw" is a darkly funny countertelling of "It's a Wonderful Life." An un-holiday show, it should shake things up this December in NYC.
Everyone loves George Bailey (including this author). That's a fact. But what if a historically overlooked character, the outwardly clowning Sam Wainwright, were given the chance to tell his side of the story? Could he give voice to people not quite at the center of their community, those less likable types who hold grudges, impress with money, sit on their jealousy...ie. the rest of us?
Enter "Hee-Haw." The idea came from watching the famous telephone scene in "Wonderful Life" where Mary and George, talking on the phone to Sam, admit their love for each other, kiss and hug. The phone is dropped. But what about Sam on the other end? What was he thinking? Had he just lost Mary forever? Part morality tale, part vaudeville comedy, "Hee-Haw" looks at the underbelly of Bedford Falls...those people who are at the fringe of their community.
Sam hosts a night at the Palace to make his case and maybe, tonight, will be the night he can win back Mary Hatch.
Hee-Haw has been invited to do a full production at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe in New York City, Dec. 4th-20th http://www.nuyorican.org/. This is an incredible opportunity to put on the play in the middle of the holiday season. I would like to direct this production. I've already assembled an amazing design crew, including Sheila Phalon, Sets, Natalie Robin, Lights, and Anna Lacivita, costumes. I also have a cast of 7 wickedly talented actors. The dilemma: Wainwright Plastics isn't around to fund the production.
Purpose of Money:
Because ticket prices are kept low to encourage a broad audience, and seating limited, Box Office receipts will not cover the cost of the show (typical of Off-Off-Broadway). In order to keep the actors and designers I have on board, I need to raise the funds to pay them. If I can't pay, I simply won't be able to keep them and will likely not be able to produce the show. In addition, money is needed to provide minimal budgets for my designers. I believe in this play, in its commercial appeal and its power to touch people who feel they're not always the hero of their story. I am confident that if I can mount this December production and make it successful, then the play will continue to move forward, whether that be here in New York or in other regional theaters. We have plenty of holiday shows that run every year, but none quite like this one.
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