Spotlight on The Wonderful Adventures of Don QuixoteBy Laura & Mike Clark • Jul 10th, 2007 • Category: Interviews
Listen to Mike talk with Jamie Bartosavage Erdman, director of the Vpstart Crow production of The Wonderful Adventures of Don Quixote [MP3 6:47 1.9MB], opening this Friday.
Mike: Hi this is Mike Clark with ShowBizRadio. I am talking with Jamie Bartosavage Erdman. She is directing the Vpstart Crow production of The Wonderful Adventures of Don Quixote. Thank you very much for talking with me Jamie.
Jamie: Thank you.
Mike: What is the Wonderful Adventures of Don Quixote about?
Jamie: It’s basically a retelling of Cervantes’ novel about Don Quixote De La Mancha. This version is a little different because it’s very family friendly and funny. If people are familiar with the musical The Man of La Mancha, it’s not that. The Wonderful Adventures of Don Quixote is about an older gentleman who has decided that he is a knight errant and he has to go out and wander and have adventures for the sake of his lady Dulcinea del Toboso. He takes along with him a squire by the name of Sancho Panza, a local village, his niece, Antonia along with their housekeeper Josephina. They are very worried about him. They recruit the village scholar, Dr. Carrasco to help them stop Don Quixote. Once Dr. Carrasco creates a plan that is when the adventures begin.
Mike: So what makes it different from The Man of La Mancha besides not being a musical?
Jamie: Besides not being a musical, it’s funny, it’s family friendly. There’s no rape scene, no jail. It’s purely the tales of different adventures.
Mike: So who is performing in the show? Who got the title role?
Jamie: David Burkenbelt who is an Vpstart Crow veteran. He was in Of Mice and Men in 2005.
Mike: Have you had any challenges with this show?
Jamie: Actually the cast has been absolutely wonderful. From the moment we started everybody got right into character and it’s been a wonderful adventure. You know, it sounds hard to say, but there’s really not been any major challenges. We’ve got a very diverse cast. David is 70 years old. I’ve got children in it as well. I’ve got someone as young as 9. It’s a diverse cast, but they’re all coming together wonderfully.
Mike: Is there a windmill in the show?
Jamie: Yes there is.
Mike: Does he actually charge it and have a battle with it?
Jamie: He doesn’t actually have a battle with it, but he does charge it.
Mike: That’s good. That’s the one thing I remember from Man of La Mancha from reading the descriptions of the show. So share with us something that happens in the show that we will want to come see?
Jamie: There’s lots. There’s a sword fighting scene. I don’t want to reveal too much about that because it is the climax. There’s a wonderful scene involving a puppet show. It will have the audience laughing I’m sure. There’s also a very fun scene where Don Quixote thinks a shepherd is a wizard and is trying to enchant a little boy into a pig.
Mike: So do you get the opportunity to do special effects in this show?
Jamie: Not too much. We’re basically going with a very storybook style theme for this. Everything is very 2D. We covered the stage in astroturf. We’re just trying to go with a very colorful very storybook, almost Shrek like feel. It’s fun and interactive. The windmill actually turns and stuff like that. But that’s as close to a special effect.
Mike: Have you thought of having a mini golf course?
Jamie: Actually that’s been a common joke because we actually have a ramp going up the front of the stage because of the horse that we have for Don Quixote. It looks just like a golf course.
Mike: That’s pretty good. Is there anything else we need to talk about that we haven’t touched on?
Jamie: Just want to make people aware that it is an extremely family friendly show. Much more so than other shows Vpstart Crow has done recently. We’re really trying to get the kids out since it’s Summer time. It’s a great show for them to come see and enjoy a little bit of adventure and learn something, too.
Mike: So tell me about what other shows you’ve worked on both as director and as other parts.
Jamie: I have directed by myself Jimmy Shine and A Doll’s House for NOVA Woodbridge Theatre Group. I’ve also twice directed the Baltimore Waltz by Carl Vogle, once for the NVTA One Act Festival and once again for a fundraiser last December. I’ve also worked with Elden Street doing costumes and props as well as with Vpstart doing costumes and props, assistant stage managing and other behind the scenes work.
Mike: Is directing something you want to do more regularly? Do you prefer doing onstage?
Jamie: Oh, no. Definitely directing, costumes, props. Anything behind the scenes. I have acted occasionally, but it’s not my first choice.
Mike: Do your skills mesh well with your husband Bret’s skills?
Jamie: Actually we work very well together. He’s my master carpenter and secondary set designer on this. I came up with the image and he’s pulled it together for me.
Mike: Very good. Tell us how people can get tickets and when the show is being performed.
Jamie: The show opens on July 13th and runs the next three weekends. We close on July 29th. We do have a pay-what-you-can preview on July 12th. Tickets can be ordered through BoxOfficeTickets.com. On July 15th after the show we will be having a talk back with the cast. It gives the audience a real page to stage feeling. They will be able to talk with the cast and crew and it will be recorded by ShowBizRadio.
Mike: What’s the website for VpStart Crow?
Jamie: It’s VpstartCrow.com.
Mike: Well, thank you very much for talking with me today, Jamie.
Jamie: Thank you.
Mike: We’re looking forward to coming out to see the show that first weekend.
Jamie: Yes, looking forward to it.
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Laura & Mike Clark started ShowBizRadio in August 2005 because they love live theater. They each have both performed in and worked behind the scenes in DC area productions, as well as earned a Career Studies Certificate in Theater from Northern Virginia Community College. Mike & Laura are each members of the American Theatre Critics Association, and Mike is a member of the Online News Association.