This September, 84 Productions is happy to present a Murray Schisgal festival in Sheffield, MA! We will be performing The Typists and The Tiger in repertory. The ensemble will be rehearsing throughout the glorious Berkshire summer and performing Labor Day Weekend in Dewey Hall in downtown Sheffield.
Who is Murray Schisgal?
Murray Schisgal is an American playwright, producer, and screenwriter born in Brooklyn. Schisgal was actually first recognized for his 1963 off-Broadway double-bill of The Typists and The Tiger. Schisgal’s works are comprised of over 50 different stageplays.
Why Should You Care About Schisgal and This Festival?
The Typists tells the story of two people, spending their lives at as typists (the people who used to manually typewrite addresses on promotional materials companies would send out). This two-hander jem pokes at the question of why we stay complacent, stagnant, in spite of our dreams. This dark comedy rings true to those of us who’ve ever thought of themselves stuck and canters through the politics and humor that sparks in the depths of these places.
On the other hand, there is The Tiger; the tale of a kidnapper and his victim.These two people, clawing for a way out of their neat, clean lives, might just get what they’re asking for. A battle of strength, wits, and patience sparks this dark situation, dropping the character into a situation neither of them expected after a kidnapping.
These two short plays, while written in a different time for a different audience, still hits the nail on the head about what we do to fit in, and how much we’ll fight to break that same mold. With the uncertainty that riddles this country, we are all fighting to find our place in it, or out of it. Whether in the office or where we ought not be, we still search for the right side to be on.
In the rehearsal rooms, all four actors will be directed under an ensemble mindset. While the two shows are separate, they will work as an ensemble, building work upon each others to allow for the pieces to be more in conversation with each other.
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Director: Lia Russell-Self
Designer: Wes Elliot
Sylvia/Gloria: Sarah-Winter Thorne
Paul/Ben: Wes Elliot