Peninsula Players Theatre is thrilled to present in-person and virtual audio recordings of the recent works by playwrights Kristine Thatcher and Sean Grennan as part of their winter play reading series, The Play’s the Thing. Previous works by both playwrights made their world premieres at America’s oldest professional resident summer theater, including Thatcher’s “Apparitions,” based on Door County’s rich history, and Grennan’s “Now and Then,” “The Tin Woman” and “Making God Laugh.”
A reading of Thatcher’s “The Safe House” will be performed in-person at Björklunden at 7590 Boynton Lane, Baileys Harbor on Monday, March 7 at 7:00 p.m. while Grennan’s “A Rock Sails By” will be performed Monday, April 4 at 7:00 p.m. Both readings will have a capacity of 80 patrons. Advance reservations are required for all events. Phone the theater’s winter Box Office on weekdays at (715) 718-0347 to register for the in-person events. For those who would like to enjoy the readings in their homes visit http://www.onthestage.com/peninsula-players-theatre to register for free access to the virtual audio reading of each production. Access is limited to 300 households for the virtual readings.
“The Safe House,” Thatcher’s newest work, is a charming and heartbreaking piece about family. In 1982, Bridget returns home to Lansing, Michigan, from New York City, where she gets by as an actor. While she longs for a comfortable stay with her grandmother, Hannah, what she finds is a family struggling with change. Hannah, the strong, independent matriarch of the family, is no longer as self-sufficient as she was, and her family is at odds on how to ensure her well-being. With gentle humor, honesty, and heart, this play is a beautiful examination of family, transition, and the importance of being there for each other. “A Safe House” may be heard virtually beginning Monday, March 7 at 7:00 p.m. and ending at 7:00 p.m. CST on Tuesday, March 8.
Thatcher’s other works include the award-winning “Emma’s Child,” “Among Friends” and “Niedecker.” She served as artistic director of Boarshead Theatre in Lansing, Michigan and has numerous stage credits throughout the Midwest as a director, actor and playwright. In 2015, she was honored with a Wilde Award for her contribution to Michigan’s professional theater.
“A Rock Sails By,” Grennan’s new play features Dr. Lynn Cummings, a troubled astrophysicist who is shaken when a strange object from outside of our galaxy heads towards Earth and calls into question her belief about what’s “out there.” “A Rock Sails By” may be heard virtually beginning Monday, April 4 at 7:00 p.m. and ending at 7:00 p.m. CDT on Tuesday, April 5.
In addition to playwriting, Grennan has also performed around the country. Originally from Oak Park, Illinois, he was last seen on Peninsula Players Theatre’s stage in “And Then There Were None” and “The Mystery of Irma Vep.” He can be seen in such movies as “Rudy” and “The Untouchables,” and television programs including “Mindhunter” and “Law & Order CI.” He is a member of The Dramatists Guild.
In-person attendees will be required to be fully vaccinated (including eligible boosters) and must wear a mask at all times in Björklunden and throughout the performance. Proof of vaccination, photo ID and tickets will be checked at the door by staff members. No walk-ins will be allowed.
Virtual, pre-recorded audio versions of the play readings will be available to those who wish to enjoy The Play’s the Thing at home. Please note that you must register in advance for the virtual audio reading by visiting www.onthestage.com/peninsula-players-theatre.
“The Safe House” and “A Rock Sails By” are part of Peninsula Players Theatre’s winter program, The Play’s the Thing. It is funded in part by a grant from the Wisconsin Arts Board with funds from the State of Wisconsin and the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as generous grants from Door County Medical Center, Friends of Door County Libraries, The Shubert Foundation and operating funds of Peninsula Players Theatre.
Peninsula Players Theatre is America’s oldest professional resident summer theater. The Play’s the Thing is part of Peninsula Players Theatre’s winter outreach programming, presenting professional play readings for the public. Learn more about Peninsula Players Theatre and its 2022 season at www.peninsulaplayers.com.