Political summit goes awry in TLT farce “Let’s Be Civilized”

Published 10:00 pm Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Rehearsals begin for “Let’s Be Civilized,” an original workshop production by Petra Harrelson.

Rehearsals begin for “Let’s Be Civilized,” an original workshop production by Petra Harrelson.

Tryon Little Theatre is very pleased to offer a special workshop production of an original work, “Let’s Be Civilized.” Written by veteran TLT performer Petra Harrelson, “Let’s Be Civilized” is a hilarious farce that pits famous historical figures against each other in a political summit that quickly goes awry.

Performances will be Friday, May 29 at 8 p.m. and Sunday, May 31 at 3 p.m. at the    Tryon Little Theatre Workshop at 516 S. Trade Street in Tryon. Admission is free, but donations benefitting Tryon Little Theatre’s scholarship funds will be gratefully accepted.

When Napoleon and Caesar contemplate hosting a political summit, they decide to assure attendance by disguising the event as a weekend of fun and games at Napoleon’s chateau. Considering themselves to be masters in the art of gamesmanship, the hosts expect to dominate all competition. However, their well-laid plans go awry as soon as the guests arrive.

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Surprisingly, nine highly dysfunctional world leaders do not get along. Despite the best efforts of quirky philosophers Gandhi and Plato, the façade of civilized conduct begins to crumble and quickly gives way to insult, intrigue and injury. Comic complications arise when, given everyone’s high power status, these maladjusted individuals try to do everything possible to conceal the evening’s events from each other and the outside world.

Lavin Cuddihee directs an all-star cast of Tryon Little Theatre performers. “Let’s Be Civilized” is presented as an in-progress workshop, and a talk back with the director and playwright will follow the production. This is a unique chance to be part of the development of an all new, original work.

Members of the cast include Josh Moffitt as Caesar, Ed Harrelson as Napoleon, Dean Trakas as Plato, Gordon Pendarvis as Winston Churchill, and Carol Cox as Elizabeth I.

Isabella I will be played by Helen Byrd, Benjamin Franklin by Henry Bright, Otto von Bismarck by Steve Porter, Maria Theresa by Tena Greene-Porter, Nikita Khrushchev by Mark Schweizer and Mahatma Gandhi by Steve Harvey.

The play is produced by Michelle Fleming and directed by Lavin Cudihee. Petra Harrelson is the playwright.

For more information, contact Producer Michelle Fleming at tryonlittletheatre@gmail.com.

– Submitted by Michelle Fleming